BHC Spotlight: Dalton Powers, '21
Why did you choose the Batten Honors College?
I chose to become a member of the Batten Honors College for many reasons including the promise of a rich academic experience and the built-in study away opportunities. But, what really sold me on the BHC were the people. As a member of the Batten Honors College, you are a member of a “cohort” of high caliber individuals who help each other intentionally and by developing strong friendships thanks to the program specific courses and the “living and learning” community that the program is built around.
What benefits have you gained from the BHC program?
As a member of the Batten Honors College, we are each given a funded study away experience. For me, this was a trip to Alaska in the summer of 2019. During this summer, I was also doing my first full-time internship in the Power Delivery group at Dominion Energy. I was able to combine the two by doing research on renewable energy generation in Alaska and comparing that research to projects that Dominion is working on.
Highlight a specific research, internship, or study abroad experience(s).
Environmental research was certainly not of interest to me prior to taking BHC courses. Before arriving at VWU, I was not willing to pay climate change any attention. However, taking the first honors course, “Complex Global Challenges,” taught me the importance of working across disciplines to improve environmental conditions. The course also taught me ways in which someone in my area of interest can help.
How did the BHC curriculum or program prepare you for this experience?
Being a part of the program has benefited me immensely. As a Business major in a typical university setting, I would not be exposed to many other subjects or ways of thinking. The BHC regularly places you in courses with individuals who are studying something different than you, whose minds work differently than yours, and who have a background different from your own. All the while, you are being taught on unique and important topics by subject matter experts from all different disciplines and schools of thought.
What do you hope to achieve/gain from this experience?
One thing I will certainly say that I have gained (and hope to continue to gain) from my experience with the BHC and from my internship experience with Dominion Energy is diversity of thought. From working with and living around people who have so many diverse ways of thinking, I have developed a unique thought process which allows me to address challenges through viewpoints I have learned from working with people from different academic disciplines and backgrounds.
List of things involved with on campus (sports teams, clubs, academic competitions/teams, positions held and description of duties)
- Student Vice President of the Southern Region Honors Council:
This is a position in which I play a role in planning conferences, managing our budget, and am on the board of the National Collegiate Honors Council.
- Marlin Chronicle: Member of the editorial staff for VWU’s student newspaper
- Campus Ministry Leadership
List any awards, recognitions, and/or conference presentations
My renewable energy research has since been presented at Virginia Wesleyan’s “Port Day” as well as selected to be presented at the Virginia Collegiate Honors Council and Southern Region Honors Council conferences.
Anything else you would like to share about your experiences with BHC
All in all, the Batten Honors College is a great opportunity for anyone looking to find their interests and develop a broader scope of thought. I’d recommend it to anyone given the opportunity to apply.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me using the info below: