New Honors Students: Welcome!

To all of our new students, welcome to the University Honors Program!

We're looking forward to seeing you at the New Honors Students Meeting on Thursday, September 2 from 12:40-1:45 PM in the Huddleston Ballroom. 

The New Honors Students Meeting is a chance for the Honors Program Team to touch base with all of you as a group, introduce ourselves, set goals, and connect you with the many offices and programs around campus that will be of value to you. We also like to refresh your memory about the Honors curriculum, give you an opportunity to spend some time meeting one another, and ask some questions.

You’ll hear directly from some of our accomplished Honors Students about their experiences so you can start thinking about your own Honors journey and about which programs and activities you might want to pursue.

The incoming Honors survey you completed gave us some insight into some of the questions and concerns you have as you prepare to enter UNH and the Honors Program. You'll find a "Student FAQ" under the Students tab of our website, but, below, you'll find a list of FAQ we've compiled just for you.

If you have questions that are not answered below, feel free to reach out to the Honors Team at any time. Call the office 603-862-3928 or email honors.program@unh.edu. Or ask us at Wildcat Days!

 

First-Year FAQs:

Balancing rigor of Honors with multiple majors/minors, athletics, ROTC, other opportunities

  • Many Honors students participate in two majors, or a combination of multiple majors and minors, etc. In addition, we have student athletes, students who participate in ROTC, paid research opportunities and internships, students who study away or study abroad multiple times, and/or students who work multiple jobs while being in the Honors Program. The Honors curriculum is designed to fit into your requirements as a UNH student, so for the most part you don’t have to add on additional things to be in the Honors Program. Sometimes it requires advanced planning and organization with your different departments to be able to fit many different things, but we are here as advisors to help you with this!

Staying on top of the amount of work and having a good work-life balance

  • Honors courses are designed to challenge motivated, high-achieving students. However, this doesn't necessarily mean more pages of reading or writing. Honors professors design courses to go into greater depth, allow students to follow their own interests, and find connections to the world outside the classroom. Students report that Honors courses challenge them to think more deeply and creatively, and that while they are sometimes difficult, the difficulty is outweighed by their interest in the courses. Grades in Honors courses tend to be at least as high as grades in other courses; taking Honors courses is not likely to harm your GPA.
  • In Honors we encourage students to build a schedule that helps them balance their school work with other things that they enjoy- whether this is intramural sports, music groups, working out, student organizations, community service, or more. The Center for Academic Resources has great resources to help students organize and structure their time to find balance. We encourage students to reach out early to get themselves acclimated to the college schedule, where you have more time outside of class, so you can make the most of the time you have and take care of yourself as well.

Managing my own mental health with the newness and transition to college

  • Taking care of your mental, physical and emotional health is very important, and we are here to support you in this transition. We have great resources on campus as well, and we can help connect you with people in various offices- just reach out to us.
    • Psychological and Counseling Services: PACS is composed of psychologists, social workers and psychology trainees who are highly skilled at addressing the unique needs of college students, and are committed to enhancing students’ ability to benefit from the university experience. Students can make appointments in advance, to go walk-in, day-of appointments, or access the after-hours emergency line if needed
    • Health and Wellness: This office provides on-site medical care, with medical professionals, a pharmacy, and more. In addition, the Living Well branch has a variety of services, programs and events designed to promote balance and well-being during your time at UNH and beyond. You can participate in peer groups or individual coaching around wellness in many aspects of life, including mental, physical, emotional, academic, social, financial, and more.
    • Student Accessibility Services: SAS ensures reasonable accommodations and equal access to all UNH students with a documented disability. We provide services to students who have permanent or temporary disabilities that affect academics, housing, and parking.
      • In addition to SAS, if students have emergent needs for support around physical or mental health, they can work with their College Dean’s office to receive appropriate support in their academics
  • Most importantly, you are not alone in your transition to UNH. Beyond these offices, there are many ways during your first months to meet other students and get connected to community members who can support you. Attending residence hall socials, Honors social events, events like University Day, and more, will help you find your community and resources for whenever you need them. Every event or program is an opportunity to meet other people who might have similar interests to you, meet faculty or staff who could become a mentor, or find a new activity that you will grow to love!

Course offerings across different fields/academic disciplines

  • The UNH Discovery Program is designed to give students a broad education across many fields, to help prepare them to go into the world as active citizens, ready to ask thoughtful questions, engage with challenging social problems, and contribute to the creation of a more sustainable, healthy and prosperous world. The Honors discovery courses are offered in all discovery categories, and we do our best to have offerings that will be interesting to people across all fields of study.
  • Sometimes students express that they don’t feel they are naturally inclined to a certain area of study, and are pleasantly surprised by the Honors courses they take in these areas. Honors discovery courses are designed to be general enough that students do not need previous knowledge in a field to do well in them. They tend to be interactive and research-oriented; the course size, which is capped at twenty students from across the five colleges, allows for a lively forum in which to express your views and develop new interests. Students tend to enjoy the opportunity to get to know students from all different majors and learn from each other’s experiences and academic lenses.

Questions about the Honors Program

When do you choose between the Departmental Honors and Interdisciplinary Honors track?

  • We will host informational meetings for you during your sophomore year to learn more about each track; we ask you to select your track by the end of your sophomore year. It’s never to early to start talking about the track options, and we can discuss your interests during your first-year advising meetings so that you feel comfortable with your decision when it’s time to decide. It is also possible to do both tracks, and we can talk about this in advising meetings too.

What are the differences between Honors and non-Honors courses?

  • Honors courses are designed to challenge motivated, high-achieving students. However, this doesn't necessarily mean more pages of reading or writing than non-Honors courses. It usually means Honors professors design courses to go into greater depth, allow students to follow their own interests, and find connections to the world outside the classroom. Being in a class with other Honors students means students come to class prepared and are able to challenge each other, and learning happens through the rich conversation. This can often happen in non-Honors classes too, but it is the foundation of Honors courses because of their small size and intentional design.

Are Honors students separated from non-Honors students?

  • No. As an Honors student, you have an option to live in Hubbard Hall, where there will be other Honors students and also non-Honors students looking for an academically-focused environment. You will take classes with students across all majors in the Honors Program, and most of your other courses will be with a mix of Honors and non-Honors students. Being in the Honors Program is one part of your academic identity at UNH.

Can AP credits take the place of Honors requirements?

  • No. Your AP credits can fulfill discovery category requirements, but they cannot take the place of your 4 Honors discovery course requirements. If you are bringing in AP or dual-enrollment credits, we’ll take this into account in our advising meetings and plan your Honors courses for the categories you have left to fulfill. If you have specific questions you can always make a 1:1 appointment with an Honors advisor.

Are there additional scholarship opportunities in the Honors Program?

  • Yes. We have a scholarship application process for Honors students starting in their sophomore year, and are able to offer a range of scholarships to different students each year.

Am I required to take a set number of Honors courses each semester or year?

  • No. You must complete your Honors requirements by the time you graduate, but there is no required schedule for completing Honors work. Most students take Discovery Honors courses in their first two years; Honors in Major and Interdisciplinary Honors work usually begins in the Junior year. There is variation in this depending on different majors or circumstances. You are welcome to take more than one Honors course in a semester.
  • You can read more about the Honors curriculum here.

What if I want to withdraw from Honors? What do I need to do?

  • You can withdraw from the Honors Program at any point, and if you do, the Honors courses you’ve taken will remain on your transcript. We encourage students to try Honors courses and see how they like them, and if at any point you decide you want to prioritize other things or don’t want to participate anymore you can fill out a withdrawal form on our website. We invite you to have a meeting if you have questions about withdrawing so we can talk through your options and help you make the best decision for you.