About the College

Photo of Evan Townsend

My first experience with MU was through the Honors College. It's challenging programs and amazing opportunities immediately revitalized my love of learning. The more involved I become, the more I grow to appreciate all the Honors College has to offer.

—Evan Townsend

With an enrollment of over 2000 members, the Honors College serves a very diverse group of high-achieving students who major in every discipline from Engineering to English. To provide these students with both the intimacy of a small college and the breadth of a large, pluralistic, and distinguished research institution, the Honors College works closely with departments and colleges on campus to provide a range of honors courses, academic programs, and extra-curricular events and activities. We call this exciting and varied set of offerings, the “Honors Experience.”

Providing close interaction with faculty, honors courses and academic programs are designed to create a dynamic, interactive environment that fosters deep intellectual development.

The extracurricular events and activities are designed to enhance the “Honors Experience” with special opportunities that include private seminars with distinguished speakers, an Honors Book Club, guest visits to graduate seminars, and “Made for Success” workshops on interviewing and applying for fellowships.

What kind of a student belongs in the Honors College? To begin, you must be someone who strives for academic excellence. But being an honors student at MU means more than having a high GPA. It means possessing a breadth of intellectual curiosity, taking a variety of honors courses—both in your chosen major and not—simply because you love to learn. It means aspiring to be a leader in your field, however you define “leadership.” It means believing in your own powers of creativity and imagination, whether you are in the Arts or in Accounting. And it means striving to make your college experience an adventure, so that you constantly push yourself in new and unfamiliar directions. Selected last year from over 100 entries in a student contest, the Honors College’s new epigraph reads:

“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

A recent honors graduate, Maddie Blasberg, chose this quotation as the College’s new epigraph because, as she put it, “the potential for accomplishment stems first from a spirit of scholarly adventure: a willingness to make missteps, to navigate open waters, to embrace the unknown, to choose yes, and to set sail.” Her essay is here.