become even brighter
The MVNU Honors Program is not about having gifted students simply do more work; instead, the program exists to enrich the academic and cultural experience for gifted students by offering unique and challenging courses, special extracurricular opportunities, and a supportive environment in which students can excel.
To apply to the Honors Program, students must be seniors in high school who meet at least two of the following three requirements:
- 3.5+ High School GPA
- 26+ ACT score (or equivalent SAT score)
- Top 5% class ranking
Uniquely Designed Curriculum
The Honors' curriculum is designed to challenge students to learn collaboratively in a discussion-oriented environment and to take an active role in their education by emphasizing high-impact practices and the development of "soft skills."
Honors scholars begin their experience before they ever move onto campus, engaging in the Summer Reading Assignment that invites students to read a common text and to think in ways that will prepare them for higher education and the MVNU experience.
During their first semester, Honors scholars take an Honors section of the University's introductory course, Discipleship of the Christian Mind, in which they further engage the questions raised in the Summer Reading Assignment.
In a two-course sequence, students engage in a discussion with each other, with their professors, and, above all, with important thinkers and texts. The sequence encourages students to both consider who they are as persons (what does it mean to be, as Arthur Holmes writes, "reflective, thinking beings" and "valuing beings"?) and what their place is in the broader culture (how might we be "responsible agents" in the world?).
As an ideal complement to Core Conversations, Honors scholars enroll in an Honors Seminar during six of the eight semesters they are at MVNU. Each semester's seminars explore contemporary issues and questions from multiple perspectives and involve guest lecturers from MVNU and other area universities, field trips, experiential-learning opportunities, and even travel-study options.
While Core Conversations introduces students to a rich, textured background, Honors Seminars examine problems as they confront us in the particularity of our current situation. Recent seminar topics and titles include "Art and Reconciliation," "Artificial Intelligence," and "The Problem of Pain."
In their junior year, Honors students begin a self-designed project with the help of a faculty mentor and committee. This experience connects the students’ majors with the Honors curriculum. Once completed and approved, Honors scholars present their findings at the university's annual Symposium for Undergraduate Research and Creative Work (sURC). The Honors Project often serves as a critical link between undergraduate and graduate education or as a step towards a future career. It is an ideal preparation for "the next step" Honors scholars frequently aspire to take.
In addition to these academic opportunities, the Honors Program offers:
- $1,000 annual scholarship
- Designated Honors housing
- Early registration
- Extracurricular events and trips
- Connection to internships and study abroad options
- Recognition as an "Honors Scholar" at graduation
- Community of academically-driven students