The Office of Undergraduate Academic Integrity recently hosted over 1,500 students for a series of “Understanding the Virginia Tech Honor Code” sessions in the Graduate Life Center Auditorium designed to help Virginia Tech students understand, uphold and abide by the university’s Honor Code.

These sessions were held in late January and early February and were led by Honor Council President Michael Andrews and Vice President Lauren Hoyns. Students were presented with information about the Virginia Tech’s Honor Code and heard from presenters who covered issues including what constitutes an honor code violation, strategies to avoid violations, on-campus resources that can help students be successful academically, and ways to get involved with the Honor System.

“I loved the level of student engagement as they were asking questions, playing Kahoot!,” said Andrews. “I especially liked them being able to articulate in their own words why academic integrity mattered to them. Their engagement in these sessions was indicative of Virginia Tech’s deep commitment to integrity.”

Hoynes spoke about the VT-Shaped Learning experience she gained through leading the Understanding the Code Sessions. “I really loved the opportunity getting to interact with members of the community to talk about the Honor Code,” Hoynes said. “Understanding the Code is a great leadership event and one that I never imagined I would be giving a presentation on as large as these are.”

Faculty member Buddy Howell was in attendance and has been promoting these sessions to students taking his communication classes.  “These 'Understanding the Code' sessions are a wonderful way for faculty to promote a culture of integrity in their courses, as well as a great way for Hokies to learn how to support each other as they hold themselves, and their peers, accountable for the highest standards for academic honesty," said Howell.

Following her attendance at the Understanding the Code session, Jacquelene Herbold, an undergraduate student majoring in political science, wanted to get more involved because she was excited about “upholding the standards of the university.”

Fellow student Nicole Lopez, who also signed up to become a panel member, said, “I think it’s important for everyone on campus to be honest with how they’re getting through college and pursing their degree.”

The next scheduled event from the Office of Undergraduate Academic Integrity is “Academic Integrity Week," April 22-26. This is a week-long focus on the importance of academic integrity featuring daily events that encourage student engagement and the promotion of the culture of academic integrity.

For more information, contact the Office of Undergraduate Academic Integrity at 540-231-9876 or honorsys@vt.edu.

Written by Ashley Perry