Fulbright College Honors Program Mission and Values
The Fulbright College Honors Program promotes discovery for honors students in the College of Arts and Sciences, the opportunity to gain a deeper knowledge of their field through rigorous coursework, thesis research with a faculty advisor, and funding for study abroad and other opportunities. We also seek to continually encourage diversity and inclusion among our honors students through equitable access to advising, peer mentoring opportunities, research guidance, and other support services.
- A Culture of Inclusion and Respect
- Academic Freedom
- All Individuals and Diverse Perspectives
- Discovery, Research, Creativity and Innovation
- Diversity, Civility and Cultural Competence
- Education, Access and Equity
- Educational and Lived Experiences
- Highest Standards in Teaching and a Service-Oriented Approach
- Interdisciplinarity and Global Approaches
Fulbright College Honors Program Staff
Jill Geisler Wheeler
Jill earned her undergraduate and both of her graduate degrees from the University of Arkansas. She received her Bachelor's of Science in Business Administration in Marketing Management in 2004. She went on to earn a Master's in Higher Education in 2007, a second Master's of Science in Counselor Education in 2010.
Jill joined Fulbright Honors in January 2012 after 5 1/2 year of academic advising in the Fulbright Advising Center. While there she worked with students of all majors in Fulbright College. Jill was Assistant Director of Program Development and her responsibilities in addition to academic advising included heading the colleges recruiting efforts along with supervising the Fulbright College Ambassadors. She is an active member of both the Arkansas Academic Advising Network (ArkANN) and National Academic Advising Counsel (NACADA) where she is the incoming chair of the Webinar Advisory Board. She has presented at the state, regional and national level through these two organizations. She was named "Outstanding Academic Adviser" by ArkAAN in 2010 and her co-presentation on student veterans won Best of Region 7. Prior to the Advising Center she was an Assistant Director of Admission in the University's Office of Admissions.
A native of Brinkley, AR, Jill now calls Northwest Arkansas home with her husband Michael, their two little girls Emma and Ava. She loves to walk with her family around campus and just being outdoors in Northwest Arkansas. Her favorite part of her job is that every student is different and each one of them brings something special to the advising session. Helping students discover their passions and how a Fulbright major fits them continues to make her smile daily.
Mary Ellen Hartford
Mary Ellen was born in Delano, California, and grew up in Springfield, Missouri. Her parents are retired academicians from Missouri State University; Dr. Holt V. Spicer, former Debate Coach, Communication Department Chair, and Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities and Marion Spicer, English professor.
Mary Ellen has a B.A. in Music from Missouri State University. She is married to Hershel Hartford and they have six children, Emily Heard, Rhiannon Strick, Jasmine Cloud, Malyssa Semcken, James Fry, and Gracie Hartford, and seven grandchildren. She enjoys singing, both at St. Paul's Episcopal Church and with the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas Singers. She has sung on tour several times, including singing solos in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome and St. Mark's Cathedral in Venice. She also loves to read and cook.
Mary Ellen has been with the Fulbright College Honors Program for almost 19 years, and had been Administrative Secretary in the Department of Music at Missouri State University for five years before that. She also has extensive management experience from years in restaurants and convenience stores. She loves working with bright students and making them feel at home.
Sammi earned her undergraduate degree in English and News/Editorial Journalism from the University of Arkansas and her M.A. in English from the University of Oklahoma. While earning her M.A., she served as a Graduate Teaching Assistant for First-Year Composition for two years. Her major areas of interest are postcolonial and indigenous literature, feminism, Anthropocene studies, and non-human studies. She is currently working on editing her master's thesis for publication.
Sammi grew up in Norman, Oklahoma, which was part of what pulled her back to Oklahoma for her master's degree. She is thrilled to be back in Fayetteville with her husband, James Russell, and their dog, Lexi. As a 2016 graduate of the Fulbright College Honors Program, Sammi is excited to give back to the program that gave so much to her and help students achieve success through their honors degree.