Exceed even your high expectations
If you are looking to stimulate your intellectual curiosity and satisfy your desire for academic leadership, the Quinnipiac Honors Program offers something unique.
Students in our well-established program take advantage of the many cultural and learning opportunities across our campuses and in the Northeast. We organize trips to performances and parks in New York City, the Connecticut Forum in Hartford, and galleries, collections and plays in Hamden, New Haven and the surrounding communities.
As a member of the Honors Program, you’ll be able to more deeply explore ideas, take advantage of opportunities for campus leadership, make time to think creatively, and engage fully with the university environment.
Honors Program Experience
In our curriculum, we challenge students to think about the process of knowing, and in particular to explore “not knowing,” by investigating our assumptions, our knowledge and what is presented in any class. Our Signature courses help us practice curiosity and critical thinking by exploring identity from a wide variety of angles that are both familiar and unfamiliar.
This coursework is supplemented by Signature experiences that bring students to less conventional, but very engaging, sites for immersive learning.
Signature courses are required; they challenge students to think about knowing, and to investigate what we don't know.
- WP 101H: Honors First-Year Seminar: Knowing and Not Knowing, Awareness and Inquiry
- WP 400H: Honors Capstone Experience
- Special Honors-only interdisciplinary seminars
- Honors Core Electives in history, music, economics, biology, psychology, philosophy and more.
Signature experiences complement on-campus coursework with interdisciplinary experiences that include travel to Manhattan, Hartford, Hamden and New Haven to explore:
- The National Museum of Mathematics
- The High Line
- Jazz dance
- Gay and lesbian NYC
- The CT Forum
- Leadership and social justice
- Long Wharf Theatre
The University Honors Program embeds the value of service in each of its community commitments. We “give back” through service — but we also think about service from a wide variety of academic angles, courses and experiences. On- and off-campus, honors students participate in a variety of initiatives that focus on service in the local community and beyond, such as:
- Tutoring local students at Hamden middle and elementary schools
- Relay For Life
- The Big Event
- Project Angel Tree: Providing gifts to children
- New Haven Reads Book Drive
The Honors Program supplements Signature education expectations with “Be Here!,” a series of events we sponsor that is also open to the wider Quinnipiac community. Examples of some of these events include:
- 60-Second Lectures
- Got Privilege?
- Ice Cream Social(ly) Responsible
- Senior Honors Capstone Conference
Greater New Haven
Small groups of honors students travel with faculty and senior students to explore the culture, arts and environment of Hamden, Hartford and New Haven, all in pursuit of rich and vibrant educational experiences, such as:
- Shakespeare in the Park
- Yale University Art Gallery
- New Haven Symphony Orchestra
- Crypt tour
- Apple picking
- Escape New Haven (team-based puzzle challenge experience)
Global and intercultural education promotes life fulfillment and success during and after college. The Honors Program encourages students to study abroad for college credit or through not-for-credit trips that foster an open frame of mind through new experiences, challenging ideas, and intercultural dialogue. Honors students have traveled to Quebec, and the Honors Program is developing trips to Ireland, Poland and Hungary.
Honors Leadership Board
The Honors Leadership Board is comprised of highly motivated and active members of the honors community who are elected by their peers to help plan events like 60-Second Lectures, Honors Orientation, Greater New Haven events among many others. Board members also have other commitments such as tabling at Open Houses, writing blog posts and helping to plan what honors courses should be offered.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the balance of coursework and honors requirements difficult to maintain?
Honors students are usually very involved on campus and do not find that the program interferes with these opportunities. The Honors Program is flexible and accommodates students from all majors and interests. Honors courses usually overlap with required major or core classes, such as social studies, fine arts, and humanities — no additional courses are required and Signature experiences are flexible.
Are honors courses harder than regular courses?
While honors courses are not necessarily more difficult, they do tend to challenge students to think in broad and innovative ways. This enhanced coursework is not usually burdensome, and instead leads to many benefits, including intellectual challenges, unique educational advances and cultural opportunities. These lead to better learning experiences and higher grades than in non-honors coursework, particularly in discussion-based settings.
How do I stay in the Honors Program, and what is expected of me?
You must maintain a 3.30 GPA, participate regularly in University Honors Program activities, and meet the expectations of the Honors Signature education — a combined total of 8 honors-level courses or Signature experiences.
How do I join?
The application requirements, timeline and process are described below.
What do I do if I’ve been accepted?
Your honors experience begins with early move-in and orientation starting on the Wednesday before Welcome Weekend. It continues with a wide variety of cultural, academic and social events during the academic year and beyond. Your first semester includes an honors section of WP 101H to supplement the Quinnipiac introductory course, First Year Seminar.
What can I do if I have more questions about the Honors Program?
You can reach out to the director of the program directly, or visit our information tables at admissions events such as Open House or Admitted Student Days. Learn more below.
We welcome you to reach out with any questions you have about the Honors Program. Please contact the director of the program, Melissa Kaplan, by email.
Meet us at an admissions event
Come find us at our table in the Athletic and Recreation Center during an Open House. Current Honors Program students will be available to meet you and answer your questions.
Once you are admitted to the university, we encourage you to attend an honors-specific information session during the Admitted Student Days held in March or April.
Before students can apply to the Honors Program, they have to apply as an incoming full time student and receive notification of an acceptance.
Students who have applied and received a letter of acceptance may apply to the Honors Program. Students are notified by the director of the Honors Program on a rolling basis.
The program is small and seeks a broad range of students from all undergraduate areas. If you are not selected for the Honors Program as an incoming student, there is a second opportunity to apply later in your freshman year.
The Honors Program seeks students who want to engage their intellectual curiosity and academic leadership. We look at all the ways a student might contribute to our community, including:
- high school GPA and activities
- unique perspectives and/or life experience shared in the application essay
- standardized tests
We aim to create a community of students and faculty that helps us think and learn. Students must be willing to pursue their own interests, be intellectually adventurous or be curious about the world.
If you qualify for the Honors Program, we’ll notify you and invite you to apply.
Entry to the program is by application, which includes a 500-word essay explaining your interest.
The essay is the most crucial part of the application process. While the admissions committee notes excellent academic performance, the University Honors Program also requires its students to express themselves in writing. With that in mind, make your responses to the essay questions specific. Explain as clearly and concretely as possible, with examples where relevant, why you want to join the program, how it will serve your needs as a student and person, what qualities you bring to enhance the program and what you in turn expect to contribute to the program. This is an opportunity for you to tell us about your intellectual curiosity and passions. Creative expression is always welcome.
If you are a freshman in your second semester at Quinnipiac and you're interested in transferring into the Honors Program, please visit MyQ to learn more about the requirements and process.