Commonwealth Honors Program at Middlesex

The Honors Program offers exciting and challenging opportunities for students to learn at an advanced level with peers and professors.

Commonwealth Honors Office:
David M. Kalivas, Ph.D., Program Director and Professor;
Donna Colella, Honors Administrative Assistant;

Enrollment Center - Building 9-107D/110

[01/06/18]   If you haven't registered for honors courses, then best do so before they're closed out next week.

[12/15/17]   Best wishes to all our students as they complete final projects and exams. If you haven't registered for honors classes yet, be sure to do so soon, many are already full, so don't wait too long to sign up for classes. Have a safe and joyous winter break -Happy Holidays!

[08/31/17]   Welcome back for another great academic year!!

[05/25/17]   Commencement Day: Congratulations and Best Wishes!!

[05/24/17]   All Commonwealth Honors Graduates: meet in Cowan Center Lobby for a class photo at 8:45 AM sharp, Thursday morning.

Had a great day at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum with Commonwealth Honors Program and PTK students yesterday, great group!

[05/06/17]   Good luck - Best wishes on final projects and exams as we go into the last week of classes! And, of course, if you haven't registered for Fall honors classes then do so this week before they close. Happy End of Term!!!!!!

Middlesex Community College

Today is great day to experience poetry at the Middlesex Lowell Federal Building - free and open to everyone!

Join us as The Middlesex Humanities Center hosts La Guagua Community Poetry Festival: Voices and Translations.


La Guagua Community Poetry Festival Video

Come to our Community Poetry Festival this weekend -- free!!

Please join us for La Guagua Community Poetry Festival at Middlesex Community College this Friday, April 21 (5:00-7:30 pm) and Saturday, April 22 (8:30 am-4:...

Translations: Voices from the Community

Come one, come all to an exciting poetry festival, April 21-22!!! Middlesex Community College, MCC

MCC alum Diana Santana, a former student in the Commonwealth Honors Program completed her honors capstone at the UML Honors College with a great panel discussion on Homelessness, Food Insecurity, and Parenting! Great work, congratulations Diana!

[03/28/17]   Registration for Fall 2017 is underway, signup for your honors classes before they fill up. Make appointments with your advisers, or see an academic adviser at one of the Enrollment Centers, or make an appointment to register with Dr. Kalivas.

[02/22/17]   Where can you go for the first two years of a top quality baccalaureate program before transfering to a four year college for just $6k a year? Commonwealth Honors at Middlesex Co College! Spread the word!

[02/22/17]   Where can you go for the first two years of a top quality baccalaureate program before transfering to a four year college for just $6k a year? Commonwealth Honors Program at Middlesex Co College! Spread the word!

[01/25/17]   Welcome back -- have a great semester!

[01/05/17]   Happy New Year!!! If you haven't registered for Spring honors classes, then best to do so before all the seminars and classes close.

[11/16/16]   Registration for Spring classes is underway, so don't forget to register for honors classes before they fill up: World Cultures, Globalization, Poverty, Wealth, Capitalism, Asian Literature/Social Psychology, English Comp I and II -- all await you!! If you can't get an appointment with your adviser soon enough, then call or email to make an appointment with Dr. Kalivas: CHP Office 781-280-3553 or honors@middlesex -- thanks.

[11/15/16]   Registration for Spring classes is underway, so don't forget to register for honors classes before they fill up. Also, today is the deadline for International Fellowship Applications. :-)

[11/10/16]   Just a reminder to register for Spring semester classes -- honors classes fill up quickly, so don't wait, make an appointment with your advisor or with Dr. Kalivas and get registered!! All the best wishes to everyone!!


Middlesex Community College

Do you like a challenge? The Commonwealth Honors Program at Middlesex offers unique learning opportunities for students to study at a more advanced level. Learn more,

Click here to support Empower Women Sanitary Solutions by Fiona Jamal

A graduate of the Commonwealth Honors Program, Fiona Jamal, is doing great work in India helping women take control of their lives; this important work requires funds, so please consider this as part of your charitable donations and share this page to help spread the word and help Fiona continue doing this great work. Empower Women and Young Girls Many of you are already strong supporters of the Empower Women-Sanitary Solution project and I want to thank you for your continued support and encouragement. We hope that this project will continue to spread and inspire more people around the world. For almost...

Graduation 2016 - Congratulations Commonwealth Honors and all MCC graduates!! Will miss you, but we're all very proud of your accomplishments and wish you all the best in the next phase of life's journey!

[05/14/16]   Congratulations to all our former Commonwealth Honors Students graduating from UML today!!

[05/11/16]   If you haven't applied for graduation, well, don't wait any longer, make your application now! ;-)

[04/28/16]   The 6th Annual Honors Research Conference was a huge success with 131 student presenters. It was a wonderful day -- congratulations to everyone!!! (photos will soon follow).

Immigration and Community Challenges in Lowell Public Forum

Video from Middlesex Community College's public forum, titled “Immigration and Community Challenges in Lowell,” held from 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 12, in t...

[04/14/16]   Our 6th Annual Honors Poster Conference is fast approaching -- Wednesday, April 27, 2:00 to 5:00. For students participating in the conference, please be sure to review our website where you will see slides of past conferences as well as informative slides on "How to Prepare a Poster Presentation." Also, Commonwealth Honors students planning to graduate this May must apply for graduation at one of the college Enrollment Centers, so please be sure to do so this week.

Let us know if you can attend this forum on Immigration in Lowell. Or, just show up, should prove interesting. Hope to see you Tuesday night.

[04/01/16]   Public Forum on "Immigration and Community Challenges in Lowell" at the Lowell National Park Market Street Visitors Center
April 12, 2016 – 5:00 to 8:00pm

Panel Discussion
Dr. Christoph Strobel, Associate Professor of History, UML
Bopha Malone, Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association and Enterprise Bank
Julia Gavin, Director of Programming, Coalition for a Better Acre
Dr. David Kalivas, Commonwealth Honors Program

The forum will feature a community discussion led by a panel on immigration, community advocacy, and the role of residents (citizens and non-citizens) in shaping urban development in Lowell, Massachusetts. This forum will be an opportunity to provide public space to examine the historical and contemporary context for immigration, the perceptions about immigrants and implications of racism in urban development, the role of community leaders, and related issues associated with misunderstandings about diversity and social stability in the city of Lowell.

For more information or to RSVP contact the Commonwealth Honors Office at 781-280-3553 or

Terminally Ill Senior Gets Special Graduation Day | UMass Lowell

This is inspiring, joyous, and tragic all at once. The joy of life continues for this young woman in the face of life's bitter fragility.

[03/22/16]   It's that time of year again, time to see your advisers and register for Fall courses, 2016. If you are graduating then please make sure to submit your graduation application at one of the Enrollment Centers. If you have questions about your course schedule or need honors advising, then make an appointment to see Dr. Kalivas by calling 781-280-3553 or email to

Here are the list of honors courses for the Fall, 2016:

HUM/HST 290 World Cultures, TR 11:00-12:15, Bedford, Mooney/Kalivas

HUM/HST 291 Latin American Lit/History MW 12:30-1:45 Lowell Raya/McCarron

ETH 101-07 Ethics and Society, TR 12:30-1:45 Bedford, Brocatto

PSY 101-52 Introduction to Psychology, MW 9:30-10:45 Lowell, Keen

ECO 140-04 Principles of Macroeconomics MW 11-12:15 Bedford, Kaulfuss

Honors English Courses:
ENG 101:
01 TR 11-12:15 Pesce (Bedford)
18 MW 8 - 9:15 Saladino-Kuhl (Bedford)
50 TR 12:30 - 1:45 Carlsen (Lowell)
83 F 8 - 10:45 Mason (Lowell)

ENG 102:
01 TR 12:30 - 1:45 Pesce (Bedford)
50 TR 9:30 - 10:45 Carlsen (Lowell)

Watch Pakistani Comedians respond to Islamophobia after Paris attacks

Powerful message about Islamophobia: Paris Attack : Watch Pakistani Comedians respond to Islamophobia after Paris attacks

[11/10/15]   Honors Seminars and English classes are filling up -- register soon!!

The Story of Oxi Day

A day to commemorate one small country's words of "No" to Fascism 75 years ago. History is lost when we fail to remember those events in the past that helped shape our world in the present:

[10/20/15]   It's Registration time again, please signup for honors seminars and courses before they fill up. Either make an appointment with an Enrollment or Faculty adviser. If you can't get into to see an adviser, then call or email the CHP office to make an appointment to sign up for your Spring term with Dr. Kalivas.
Honors Seminars Spring 2016:
Bedford Campus:
HUM/HST 290 World Cultures, TR 11:00-12:20
SOC 294 Globalization: An Honors Seminar TR 12:30 -1:45
ETH 101 Ethics and Society, T 6:00-8:50pm (Broccato)
Lowell Campus
HUM/PSY 292 Asian Literature and Social Psychology F, 11:00-1:45

Honors English Courses:
ENG 102-01 TR 9:30-10:45 ENG 102-50 MW 11:00-12:15
ENG 102-02 MW 8:00-9:15 ENG 102-51 TR 9:30-10:45
ENG 101-01 TR 11:00-12:15

Commonwealth Honors Office at or call at 781-280-3553 for an appointment. Our website is - thanks.

[09/11/15]   We'll have our first meeting of the CHP Student Association and open house for all new and returning honors students. Please join us on September 23 at 2:00 in the Commonwealth Honors Center in CC-216, Bedford Campus. Refreshments will be served and Dona Cady, Dean of Global Education, will share information about study abroad opportunities. We look forward to meeting new and returning CHP students!!

[09/07/15]   Welcome back!! Donna Colella and Dr. Kalivas will be at the opening day table on "Excelling Academically," 12:30-2:30, Bedford Campus, and Dr. Keen will be at the table on the Lowell Campus. Stop by to say hello and/or let us know if you have any questions as you get ready for another year at Middlesex.

[09/02/15]   A few spaces left in HST 295 Middle East/Islamic World (Tuesday evenings Bedford) as well as in ENG 101-70 (Lowell) and ENG 102-05 (Bedford).

[08/27/15]   There's still time to sign up for honors classes: HUM/HST 291 Latin American Literature/History (Lowell) and HST 295 Middle East/Islamic World (Tuesdays at 6pm, Bedford).

If you haven't taken ENG 101 or 102 honors, there's still time to sign up for one of those English honors courses, too. Don't wait too long as most classes will be closed by early next Tuesday.

[08/22/15]   If you haven't signed up for classes yet, make sure to do so no later than Tuesday of next week! We still have spaces available in the Honors ENG 101 and 102 sections on both campuses. There are also several seats open in the seminars on Latin American Literature and History (HUM/HST 291) and the Tuesday evening offering of the Middle East and Islamic World (HST 295).

Enjoy the remaining days of summer and look forward to seeing everyone in September.

People Are Finally Talking About The Thing Nobody Wants To Talk About

This is an important issue regarding women's issues examined by NPR in this piece, but is also being actively worked on by a former Commonwealth Honors student at Middlesex, and recent graduate from Wellesley College, Fiona Jamal - here is a link to her Go Fund Me site: It's menstrual hygiene. The topic makes many folks uncomfortable. Yet in the developing world, it's a problem that keeps girls from going to school and playing in sports. Now things are changing.

Wonderful evening last night at the Celebrity Forum where CHP students received their Commonwealth Honors Foundation Scholarships, had a nice meal together, and enjoyed the evening with William Shattner aka "Captain Kirk." Congratulations to Josh, Lindsey, Bryan, Madeleine, Erin, Karen, and Maryna!

Empower Women: Sanitary Solutions

CHP Alum and Wellesley graduate, Fiona Jamal, is doing great work empowering and enriching the lives of women in India. Fiona is in India for the summer and here's a link to her FB page.

Empowering Women and Young Girls

In the summers of 2013 and 2014, I had the opportunity to conduct fieldwork and live among Siddis (people of African descent) in Karnataka, India. Much of my time was spent with women, and young girls who live in rural hostels. Many of these young girls live in abject poverty and come from villages where child bride practices and human trafficking are prevalent. My interviews with them educated me about their concerns surrounding puberty and menstruation.

For example, some castes in India pathologize menstruation to make young women feel as if they have a disease. Further, parents or caregivers feel powerless at helping their children during this process because they themselves are not well equipped with the necessary knowledge about menstruation. The girls and women also disclosed to me that they do not have access to or cannot afford sanitary pads. They resort to using rags from old clothes, newspapers and leaves which put them at a higher risk for bacterial infections. The goal of this project is to educate young girls and women about women’s reproductive health, as well as train them to make reusable cotton sanitary pads and market the pads as a sustainable small business enterprise in rural Karnataka, India.

Young girls are absent from school for fifty or more days throughout the school year and women will miss four to five days of farm work per month because of menstrual leakage and the taboos which surround menstruation. Some Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) are working with local Indian government officials to promote reusable sanitary pads, but their availability has not reached Siddi women and girls who remain at a disadvantage because of their minority status as a Scheduled Tribe. Armed with this information, I was motivated to develop a project which enabled the girls and women to gain access to resources which will help them take control of their bodies and reproductive health.

In the summer of 2014, with the generous funding from the Davis Projects for Peace through Wellesley College, I was able to start a project creating reusable sanitary pads. The project was to supply reusable sanitary pads to Siddi girls and women as well as educate and teach them about puberty and menstruation. Another component of the project was to recruit and train girls and women to learn how to sew and market the reusable pads as a sustainable small business enterprise. It brought together groups of women from different castes and tribes for a discussion about their bodies. Discussing their bodies has helped them build self-confidence as well as self-awareness, creating respect for one another and forming a network of support, which, in turn, will foster peace across castes and tribal differences.

These efforts help the girls enhance their future and financial independence while contributing to their development and that of their communities. This year I received travel funding from Wellesley College through the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, but in order to expand the project, additional funding is needed. Due to their remoteness and lack of access to materials, I am reaching out to you for your support to develop and expand this project to reach more young girls and women in other villages.

Objectives for the project:

1) To empower young girls and women by providing access to reusable sanitary pads and provide information relevant to menstruation and female reproductive health.

2) To convene focus groups in three villages to identify concerns regarding women’s reproductive health as well as create a network of support for the young girls and women.

3) To train girls and women how to sew cotton sanitary pads as a sustainable business enterprise that will generate income for financial stability.

4) To introduce the newly-trained girls and women to Non-Governmental Organizations to which they can market and sell the reusable sanitary pads.

With your help, the girls can stay in school longer and the women can continue to provide for their families by remaining at work. In addition, the young girls and women will continue to empower other women by sharing their knowledge and sewing the reusable cotton sanitary pads. Funding will be used for educational materials and supplies to make the reusable pads, such as cotton fabric, polyurethane laminate fabric (PUL), thread, scissors, sewing machines, hook-and-loop fasteners, snaps, and flannel. Your support makes a real difference in empowering the lives of these young girls and women in rural India.

Warm wishes and thanks for your support,


Middle Eastern Culture and Literature

CHP Alum, and graduate of UML, Devon Schneider has created this FB page on Middle Eastern Culture and Literature that has lots of good information. "Like" this page to keep informed about what's happening in the Middle East.

This page will explore the history and culture of Middle Eastern countries through both native and non-native written literature.

[06/08/15]   Reminder, consider the Fall Honors Seminars, which are filling up fast:
HUM/HST 290 World Cultures (currently full)
ECO/SOC 293 Wealth, Poverty, and Capitalism (2 seats open)
HUM/HST 291 Latin American Literature/History
HST 295 Middle East/Islamic World (Tuesday, 6:00-8:45)
ENG 101 and 102 Honors sections in Lowell and Bedford.
For more information, contact the CHP office: 781-280-3553 or

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MCC Food and Sustainability Club MCC Food and Sustainability Club
591 Springs Rd
Bedford, 01730

A community page for the MCC Sustainability Club

Muslim Students Association of MCC Muslim Students Association of MCC
591 Springs Road
Bedford, 01730

MSA of MCC is formed to educate the college about the Muslim religion and increase the tolerance of Islamic views. (Middlesex Community College)