Mission Statement

The OTC Honors Program provides academically motivated high-achieving students who conduct themselves in a responsible and respectful manner the opportunity to engage with a community of scholars through a variety of individualized or learner-directed experiences, collaboration with instructors and peers, enhanced or additional learning environments, and real-world experiences both in the classroom and beyond to explore learning that is broader, deeper, unique, or more complex than traditional educational experiences.


About Us

The Ozarks Technical Community College Honors Program is an open admission academic program designed for high-achieving students who want more out of their college experience. Students are encouraged to embrace a lifestyle of learning and investigation, expand their experiences and opportunities, and seek out excellence and success both inside and outside the classroom. The Honors Program is more than just taking great honors courses, it is about seizing opportunities to explore, create, and elevating an appetite for learning and personal growth.


Our Goals

The Honors Program strives to:

  • Encourage critical and creative thinking through a curriculum that requires analysis, interpretation, synthesis, and problem-solving.
  • Provide an enriched and innovative academic program to students who demonstrate motivation and inquisitiveness towards education.
  • Foster team building, collaboration, and leadership through effective communication.
  • Promote activities that contribute to the betterment of the community.
  • Build a network of academic and community resources.


Our History

The impetus for the OTC Honors Program began with OTC President, Dr. Hal Higdon, in late 2006. By spring 2007, it grew into a full-blown initiative with a task force to research the necessary steps to initiate a successful honors program at OTC. The task force was comprised of fourteen members from across the College. The team began meeting once a week and after thorough research and discussion, created a mission statement, program, parameters, plotted the course for the creation of the OTC Honors Program, and appointed Dr. Caron Daugherty as the first Director of the Honors Program.


Dr. Daugherty worked tirelessly to create the OTC Honors program and ensure its success. without the foundation and hard work put in by all of those who got the program off the ground, it would have never been successful. Dr. Daugherty is now the College President of Flint Hills Technical College in Emporia, KS. The position of Director was passed on to Todd Yerby, a Communications & World Languages instructor at OTC.


In spring 2009, seven students enrolled in the first OTC Honors Program course. Over the years, the program has expanded, moved physical locations, tried many worthwhile endeavors with both failures and successes, and evolved into an accessible program for every OTC student who meets program qualifications, regardless of campus location, class modality, or degree program. If a student meets the program qualifications and is willing to put in the work necessary to reap the rewards, we can provide them with the Honors experience.


The Honors Program celebrated its 14th anniversary in the spring of 2023 and boasts over 150 program graduates. Throughout its existence, students have completed thousands of hours of campus and community service, experienced unique educational opportunities, and found comradery, friendship, and impactful education through the program. As of the fall of 2023, all students that complete the requirements for completing the Honors Program will receive an Honors Studies Certificate of Specialization along with their degree upon graduation.