Professor Carter Helps Honors Students Conquer College Consortium

A typical college student might have five professors in a given semester while a professor may have over 100 students in the same semester.

Beyond grading papers, running scantrons through a machine, and responding to a few emails, some college professors do not spend the one-on-one time with students that go above their duty as an instructor of education. This applies to a number of college professors, but not to San Jacinto College Central Campus speech professor, Shera Carter.

For a large part of the semester, five honors students spent time outside the classroom with Carter in order to prepare for their participation in the Honors conference at the Gulf Coast Intercollegiate Consortium (GCIC) on Oct. 17.

“The GCIC is a consortium of regional community colleges and includes several divisions, including honors, sports, and the arts,” Carter says.

Carter, along with Central campus Honors Coordinator and anthropology professor Dr. Pamela Maack, accompanied Clayton Brown, Mariana Martinez, Chris Avallone, Olivia Villanueva, and Marina Schneider to Lone Star College – North Harris where the meeting was taking place.

According to Carter, “the purpose of the annual GCIC fall conference is to encourage and promote student presentations and publication.”

Meanwhile, Carter says she hopes the students learn from the hours they invest “researching, writing and practicing their presentations,” but she also wants them to mingle with peers from other institutions.

“I hope that my students develop confidence from developing the ability to synthesize, evaluate, and present research,” Carter says. “I also hope that they connect with diverse students from other colleges.”

Moreover, the students worked alongside each other and with Carter in order to refine their presentations before the conference.

“They are provided with multiple opportunities to practice and receive immediate feedback from me and their colleagues…,” Carter says.

Furthermore, it is an honor for students to be presenters at the GCIC since, according to Carter, it offers the opportunity to commend individual excellence in front of eight other academic institutions.

“Students have to submit abstracts and be selected to present to their various colleges, peers, faculty, and staff from other colleges,” Carter says.

In addition to San Jacinto College, the student presentations came from Alvin Community College, Angelo State University, Brazosport College, Houston Community College, Lamar University, Lee College, Lone Star College, and Sam Houston State University.

“The atmosphere at the consortium is high energy as students get to meet other honors students from other community colleges across the Gulf Coast Region,” she adds.

The students presented topics ranging from “Police Harassment,” to “The Behaviors of Adolescence Years,” and included expositions over gun control, the relationship between mental substances and behavioral changes, and the differences between short-term and long-term memory.

Carter says the best part of the GCIC, for her, was how her students stepped outside of their comfort zone and were able to exhibit their countless hours of hard work.

“The highlight of the event,” Carter says, “was seeing the students push through anxiety about presenting in a public forum and demonstrate their ability to present research through effective presentation delivery that was informative and refreshing.”