Junior News Editor
The HonorScholar program helps students get more out of their college experiences.
“The HonorScholar program challenges me and gives me something to achieve. Instead of a straightforward curriculum, the program is much more rigorous and social based, unlike a typical lecture class,” said Cody DiNicola, humanities and social science major.
The HonorScholar programs are divided into three distinct tracks: business administration, humanities and social science, and math and science. Each track contains rigorous and challenging courses and offer a “community of scholars” type of environment.
Benefits include better opportunities for transfer and access to scholarships, as well as a capstone project and internship. There are also cultural and social activities with honors faculty and students, and two years of academic challenge, creativity and critical thinking.
HonorScholar students interact with some of the college’s most respected faculty members. The program is built on a community of scholars, both faculty and students, who come together to explore the core concepts of thought and reasoning.
“My honors class is based on the idea that critical thinking is fundamental to scholarship,” said Daviel Polak, history, philosophy and social sciences professor. “We want our students to be valued for who they are as scholars and intellectuals.”
“And when they find themselves together, taking classes as a group, the camaraderie and the esprit de corps that comes from that accelerates their learning. This is what makes the program such a pleasure. I am but a member of this community of scholars,” Polak continued.
The perfect candidates for these programs are described as intellectually curious, serious about their academic goals, willing to challenge their own personal views and accepting of various cultures and perspectives.
To be accepted into the HonorScholar program, students must have graduated high school with a 90 percent GPA or higher and achieved a score of 1100 or higher on the SAT. High school coursework in biology, chemistry and physics are also recommended.
HonorScholar students enjoy small, seminar-based classes with an average of about 13 students, which allows a stronger academic relationship between professors and students, as well as deeper relationships with peers. The small seminar classes contain more in-depth discussion and deeper understanding of topics, as opposed to a basic program class.
“The HonorScholar program is a great way for students looking to excel in college to push themselves,” DiNicola said. “The discussion-based classes and community service help to give each student better social skills and more college experiences that will last them many years after college.”