Ensuring High-Impact Practices

A Hood student at the Science and Technology Fair.

Part five of the feature story in Hood Magazine fall 2023.

Forging the Future: The Campaign for Hood College

Learning should never be confined to the classroom. Beginning in fall 2025, the new Heart, Mind and Hands Core Curriculum enshrines this philosophy by guaranteeing all undergraduate Hood students, regardless of major, will have opportunities to undertake several high-impact practices as part of their graduation requirements.

What exactly are high-impact practices (HIPs)? Also known as “deep learning,” HIPs engage students in skill building through hands-on experiences. We learn best by doing, and HIPs allow students to match theory with practice. When students participate in fieldwork, study abroad, internships, capstone projects and more, they gain confidence, competence and real-world knowledge that can be applied to future careers.

Campaign donors contributed nearly $3 million toward HIPs at Hood, helping to ensure that financial status is not a barrier to any student accessing these critical learning experiences. The types of experiential learning projects happening on and around campus are as diverse as the Hood student body itself.

Angel Boardley ’24

Angel Boardley ’24 is a pre-medical biology/biomedical science student in the 4PLUS dual-degree program. While completing an internship with KamTek, Inc., a Frederick-based biotech research lab, Boardley was named Intern of the Month by the Maryland Technology Intern- ship Program. Currently, she is an intern with the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences ORISE program under the U.S. Department of Defense. Boardley is using her scientific expertise to conduct research on prostate cancer to support medical care for active-duty military personnel and veterans.

“Connecting classroom concepts to practical research in the lab has been an eye-opening experience. These internships play a pivotal role in skill development, granting us a competitive advantage when we embark on our post-college career journeys over other entry-level applicants, who may lack such practical experience. My involvement in cancer research has been transformative, unveiling an undeniable passion within me for this field of study. The hands-on experience has affirmed my desire to continue working in cancer research and further contribute to advancements in this critical area.”

Robert Penny ’24

Robert Penny ’24 is an archaeology major with a minor in history. In July 2023, he traveled to Cadir Hoyuk, Turkey, where he participated in the excavation of an ancient site as part of the Summer Research Institute (SRI) program. Alongside Jennifer Ross, Ph.D., art and archaeology department chair, Penny worked firsthand with a team of seasoned archaeologists.

“There is no substitute for hands-on experience, especially with archaeology. Scholar- ships and grants like SRI are important because they provide enthusiastic and eager students with the means to explore other avenues of their career path. The SRI grant was crucial for my travel expenditures and to help support my family while I was abroad.”

Bahador Bemani ’23

Bahador Bemani ’23 earned his BSN at Hood College. A Hodson Scholar, he also received the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. Originally from Iran, Bemani assists with advocacy work for other Iranians living in Washington, D.C. He pursued a career in nursing to fulfill his passion for helping others and championing a healthy society. The clinical fieldwork he completed while at Hood has allowed him to do just that.

“Real-world experiences are essential for nursing students. They expose students to diverse patient populations, foster interprofessional collaboration and create valuable networking opportunities. Ultimately, real-world experiences play a crucial role in preparing nursing students to become skilled and compassionate healthcare professionals.”

Read the full issue of Hood Magazine here.