Figuring out “Honors College”


Victoria Benavides, Staff Reporter

The college application process can be complicated and confusing. As someone who will be a first-generation college student myself, the struggle only intensifies. There are so many things that you don’t realize that need to be done in order to go away for college or even what the purpose of those things are. For me, one of the biggest mysteries was, and still is, the Honors College programs. I had no idea if I should apply for one or what it meant to be in one. But, after some research, I’ve cracked the code.


Who Should Apply to an Honors College?

Honors College is a great fit for ambitious students who enjoy being challenged and learning as much as possible. Students admitted to Honors Colleges typically have high GPAs starting around 3.5 and up. High SAT scores such as 1400+ can also help with admission, however, many schools are waiving requirements this year due to the impact of COVID-19. Whatever school you plan on applying to, check out their testing requirements for admissions. Additionally, even if you don’t hit that SAT score exactly you should still consider applying. Testing is just one component of an application and doesn’t represent it as a whole. People who enjoy intellectual-based or creative-based clubs would thrive in Honors Colleges. If you’re a student who performs well academically, enjoys putting in hard work for a meaningful education, and is interested in intellectual and/or creative pursuits, then you might be cut out for the Honors College Program. 


What’s the Purpose of an Honors College?

An Honors College is a smaller college program within a big university. They offer extra rigorous classes and curriculum to participants. Most of the Honors College classes are discussion-based.  Students within Honors Colleges are also offered different opportunities such as in-depth research projects and unique study abroad options.  They’re meant for ambitious students who want to be challenged within their planned field of study. Students within these programs are held to higher expectations than their peers. 


What Benefits Come from Being in an Honors College?

Once you get accepted into an Honors College you reap certain benefits that wouldn’t be offered otherwise. For one, Honors Colleges typically place honors students in the same residential building. This allows students to form close bonds with other people in the program. Additionally, honors courses are smaller classes and have smaller student to faculty ratios. If you’re looking for close connections and a sense of community, Honors College programs are definitely worth checking out. Certain universities offer special honors distinctions for Honors College program participants once they graduate. Honors Colleges at public universities also offer a liberal arts college feel without the expensive costs. Another added benefit, is that most Universities let honors students register for classes earlier than non-honors students. This is a great advantage that helps ensure honors students get the classes they want. 


Closing Note

Honors Colleges are the perfect fit for students who enjoyed being challenged academically in High School. While its rigor  may seem intimidating initially, in the long run, they serve many benefits to students. If you’re interested in an Honors College, look up what application requirements are needed based on the university you’re applying to.