What is the University Honors Program?
In a nutshell, the University Honors Program nurtures our students’ academic, professional, and personal growth, truly fostering a “whole-person” education. Every Honors student is encouraged to become a first-rate scholar, community member, and citizen. We aim to help our students develop their talents and passions, in the service of others, as fully as any college experience can allow. And we provide academic opportunities that set our students up for success at and beyond LMU.
We greatly value diversity in our students’ backgrounds, experiences, and interests, as diversity promotes the rich exchange of ideas and perspectives that are at the backbone of a liberal arts education. We seek students who are intellectual risk-takers, who embrace the ideas of intellectual adventure and community.
The rewards of being in Honors are great: Rich intellectual and personal experiences; an Honors degree for your transcript; public recognition at commencement; and the satisfaction of knowing that you excelled in one of the most challenging academic programs LMU has to offer.
Our program has three distinguishing features:Courses.
Honors students take courses in Honors Core instead of the general LMU Core. These seminar-style courses (typically capped at 15 students) are taught by LMU’s most talented faculty members; they involve active student engagement and innovative pedagogies—and they are taken with students who share your level of intellectual engagement and attainment.Intellectual immersion outside the classroom.
Honors at LMU erases boundaries between the classroom and students’ daily lives. Our students have opportunities to attend talks by scholars across disciplines. Our professors often integrate classroom experiences with field excursions. In keeping with LMU’s social justice orientation, our students use their interests and talents in service of the small and big communities in which they reside—playing leadership roles in campus organizations and designing programming around social justice issues. Finally, a signature of our program is that all Honors students complete independent research or scholarship under a faculty member’s mentorship. Some of these works are featured here and in our student-led publication Attic Salt. And almost all of our students present their work, either at LMU’s Undergraduate Research Symposium or at national and international conferences.Community.
Honors offers a close-knit community of students and faculty members. The majority of our freshmen participate in our Honors Living and Learning Community, living together in an intellectually vibrant residence hall, participating in activities that connect them to each other, to faculty, and to the larger Los Angeles community. Our “Big-Little” peer-mentoring program is so successful that our students have “family dinners” with Grand-bigs and Grand-littles. And our students have many chances to connect with faculty members, through mentoring, meals, and a slew of other events.
The University Honors Program:
- Promotes pursuit of academic excellence—measured not merely by the grades our students achieve, but also by their engagement in intellectual exploration in and out of the classroom and the independent, creative scholarly work that they produce.
- Educates the whole person by providing our students with a plurality of approaches in their coursework and with meaningful interactions in a community of peers and professors. In curricular and co-curricular work, Honors students are given opportunities to integrate knowledge with experience and to grapple with ideas that reflect the complexities of society.
- Serves faith and promotes justice, inculcating in our students the mindset that intelligence is a gift to the world, not to be enjoyed solely by its “possessor.” Honors students are expected to put their passions and talents to work, reflecting the idea that service to others can and should be an important aim of intellectual pursuits.