Catherine Cummiskey presents her senior honors thesis.

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As graduation nears, many seniors work to finish their final college assignments.

Senior honors students work to finish up their senior thesis.

Family, friends, classmates, and faculty gathered together on March 22 to honor and listen to six senior College of Education honors students present their honors theses.

The Honors Liaison for The College of Education Amber Esping said the John V. Roach Honors College decided that this year each college would individually provide a platform for their college’s senior honors students to present their honors thesis.

This year those seniors were Allie Friedman, Dayna Martin, Sarah Clement, Beth Harrison, Catherine Cummisky, and Jordan MacAskill.

“It used to be that all of the students seeking departmental honors across the university would present their projects in one giant event,” Esping said.

Esping said this year the honors college decided to let each college create an event for their own students because each college knows the best platform for their students to present on.

“We decided that the best way to honor this incredibly consuming and difficult and exciting process was to give them a more elegant forum where they would have a bigger audience,” Esping said

The projects take students up to two years to complete, and students are led by a mentor and one or two other people.

“This project has taught me a great deal about the field of special education, and I’m very grateful for the support and guidance that I received from the College of Education,” Cummiskey said. “I am especially grateful for my advisor, Dr. Lindy Crawford, who helped me through this entire process.”

Friedman, unlike the many students who chose empirical studies, wrote a children’s fiction chapter book.

“While the story is fiction, it is all based on research,” Friedman said.

At the event, each student presented to a panel of judges for 15 minutes followed by a five-minute question-and-answer section.

The criteria for judging was developed by students in Qualitative Research 2, a College of Education graduate course, led by professor Gabe Huddleston. The students, who doubled as judges, created the judging criteria based on what they learned in their class.

The winner of the College of Education senior thesis presentation, Sarah Clement, was awarded $100 and will go on to present her senior thesis at the Boller Competition. The Boller Competition consists of a representative from each college at TCU competing to win the Boller Prize.

In addition to competing for the Boller Prize, many of these students will go on to publish their work, Esping said.

“I’m excited to talk to people about it and show them what I’ve learned and accomplished,” said Friedman.

Friedman said her book is now in the beginning stages of the publishing process, and that is what she is really excited about.

Soon-to-be graduates and presenters like Dayna Martin are grateful for the opportunities that The College of Education has afforded them.

“TCU and the college of ed transformed my life for the better and I’ll forever be grateful for all the experiences and love I have received,” Martin said.