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Honors alumna Anne Wallen joins Honors Program staff

Anne Wallen speaks several languages, so she knows many different ways to describe her joy at the opportunity to come work for the University Honors Program.

This is how she chooses to explain it: "I felt like the skies opened when I saw the job posted here at KU."

Not only was the position at the Honors Program, which as an Honors alumna appealed to her, but also the job was working with national scholarship opportunities for Honors students – almost exactly what she already was doing at the University of Minnesota.

To top it off, her husband, Carsten Holm, also was applying for a job as an academic advisor at KU. He received his job offer just a day before she received hers.

"I had always talked about how much I loved it here. It's an amazing stroke of luck that we both got jobs," she says.

Coming back to Honors and KU has allowed Anne to be closer to her parents, also KU Honors alumni, who live in Lindsborg, where Anne grew up. She has been well traveled since her time at KU, having lived in Germany, Denmark and Sweden, in addition to completing her Ph.D. in German and Scandinavian studies at the University of Minnesota.

Anne says her experiences with Honors and Study Abroad at KU helped set her up to succeed in academia, and she is eager to work with Honors students to reach great achievements with scholarships, such as Rhodes, Marshall and Goldwater. She also will coordinate the University Scholars program and help with Honors recruitment.

"KU gave me a better sense of the real world. I'm a big believer in public university education," she says.

Anne reaped both the educational and financial rewards herself of being a KU Honors student.

"With the Honors Program, I could get a smaller, high quality education for less money. I had all the personal attention and amazing opportunities without going massively into debt, and I realized that by staying at KU I could get further out of Kansas by studying abroad," she says.

She lived in Douthart Scholarship Hall and received scholarships from the Honors Program to cover her study abroad trips to Germany, Sweden, the Czech Republic and Russia.

Anne and Carsten have a 3-year-old son, Nicolai, and are settling in nicely to their new campus life.

KU Today
Course offerings are “among the most comprehensive in the nation,” according to “A Review of Fifty Public University Honors Programs”
98% of University Honors Program graduates are employed or accepted to graduate school within six months of graduation
40% of students in the University Honors Program conduct research before graduation
9 to 1: Average ratio of KU honors students to faculty advisors
1 of only 7 programs nationwide to receive a top rating from “A Review of Fifty Public University Honors Programs” in 2014
60% of University Honors Program students study abroad
KU honors students select their advisors from top-ranked KU faculty