University Honors Program

University Honors Program

Making Wishes Come True

Spring Semester Experiential Learning Project with travel to Florida from Friday, April 25 – Friday, May 2, 2014

This pre-approved honors experience gives students a chance to learn more about the mission, vision, and daily work of two non-profit organizations: The Make-A-Wish Foundation and Give Kids The World.

Jessica & Ryan with a wish family after an "electronics shopping spree"

UHP advisors helping to grant a wish for an electronics shopping spree

The mission of the Make-A-Wish Foundation is to:

Grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. ” Since 1980, the Make-A-Wish Foundation® has enriched the lives of children with life-threatening medical conditions through its wish-granting work. The Foundation's mission reflects the life-changing impact that a Make-A-Wish® experience has on children, families, referral sources, donors, sponsors and entire communities. (

The mission of Give Kids The World is as follows:

Give Kids The World is a non-profit organization that exists only to fulfill the wishes of all children with life-threatening illnesses and their families from around the world to experience a memorable, joyful, cost-free visit to the Central Florida attractions, and to enjoy the magic of Give Kids The World Village for as long as there is a need.

Over 118,000 children have had their dream come true at Give Kids The World. No child in need has ever been turned away – and no child ever will. Give Kids The World is a place where families find joy, laughter, serenity, and a lifetime of memories. Through the tireless support of our volunteers, employees and generous partners, we dedicate each and every day to these special families. (

2013 MWCT participants

2013 MWCT participants, celebrating Volunteer Appreciation Week

Through structured opportunities, guided readings, and discussions over spring semester, students will learn more about each of these organizations and how they work together to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. Opportunities could include coordinating a toy/donation drive, volunteering at the Big Wish Gala, and supporting other efforts of Make-A-Wish as needed. Readings will look closer at the history of Give Kids the World and at data surrounding wish families and volunteers through the “Impact of a Wish” studies conducted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Anticipated time commitment for these activities is approximately 8-10 hours over the course of spring semester.

With this background and context in mind, the group will then travel together to Central Florida to volunteer with Give Kids The World from Friday, April 25 – Friday, May 2, 2014. Volunteer assignments will vary by person and by day and could range from gift shop attendant, to family greeter, to ride operator, to concessions and food vendor, to character photographer, and many roles in between. This immersion will provide opportunities to connect with visiting families and see more of the wish experience firsthand.

Click here to browse pictures from last year's experience.
World Wish Day Banner

Application and Cost

The application for this year's experience is now available.

Applications are due on January 13, 2014. Accepted applicants will be notified by the end of January and be accepted to confirm their placement shortly thereafter.

Anticipated cost for this year's trip is $900 per person. This price includes flight to and from Orlando, ground transportation while in Florida, lodging in townhomes, and one group meal. UHP students will automatically receive a $300 honors grant to offset costs, making the actual anticipated cost for the entire immersion experience $600.


Questions? Contact Jessica King or 513-556-6274