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Honors Program

Frequently Asked Questions

Residential Life

Do UHP students live in a separate residence hall?

No. In successive surveys, UHP students have overwhelmingly indicated a distaste for separate "honors" housing arrangements. For that reason, UHP first-year students do not live in a single residence hall but are instead associated with four residence halls each year. This distribution involves a collaboration with the Residential Learning Communities, discussed in the reply to the next questions. 

How does the University Honors Program related to Residential Learning Communities (RLCs)?

The UHP and "residential learning communities" collaborate to enhance both the experience of Honors students and the campus learning environment. Since Fall 2000, all first-year students have participated in RLCs linked to their locations within the residence halls. Learning communities also draw in first-year students who live off campus. The Honors Program is a Learning Community that spans four halls, thus it is not a residential learning community.

Simply stated, the RLCs try to build bridges between the classroom and campus life. All arriving first-year students are asked to rank their preferences for RLC assignment and also to state other interests that might influence RLC assignment. The housing office distributes students according to that information. 

The University Honors Program constitutes a community of scholars whose membership helps unite varying disciplines and different living locations. New UHP students usually take two Honors classes in the Fall. Those courses also serve as the individual's RLC classes. First-year Honors students generally fill out their schedule with core courses taught outside the program. For 2017-18, the da Vinci, ALPHA, Modern Perspectives, and Unity communities each welcomed members of the incoming UHP class.

Studies & Campus Life

Do students routinely complete both the Honors Program and a standard major in four years?

Yes. Both levels of the program fit within the normal courses of study in humanities, sciences, business, and engineering. The only caution applies to the more tightly scheduled fields, whose students should be attentive to completing the UHP classes early in the university careers.

Do University Honors Program students have time for other activities? 

Yes! The students enjoy a full university experience, and many become leaders in campus publications, theater, athletics, student government, multicultural organizations, community service, and other organizations.

May UHP students spend all or part of their junior year abroad?

Yes. Participation in the Program creates no obstacles for international study. Beyond the single junior-year fellowship for study at Mansfield College, Oxford, a number of the students study at one of the many campuses available through the Global Engagement Office at Santa Clara.

About First-year Applications

I have been accepted to Santa Clara with a merit scholarship. Does this mean I have also been admitted to the University Honors Program?

It depends - students who receive Johnson’s, President’s, or Provost’s Scholarships and/or are Johnson Scholar semi-finalists are automatically invited to join the Honors Program. Emails are sent out to those students. Students who receive other types of merit scholarships are encouraged to apply by application to the University Honors Program.