University Honors students come from many different parts of the country. Each has selected the Program because it offers a course of study and an approach to education that is uniquely appealing to a student in search of a challenge. Honors carefully sequenced tracks allow our students to fulfill their non-major course requirements in seminars with other highly engaged students.
“As a pre-health Biology major, the Honors Program was conducive to my learning how to adequately represent my thoughts and opinions in a professional setting. Because of the seminar structure and the oral exams, I feel better prepared for medical school interviews and for Board exams upon completing my baseline medical education.”
Molly Van Dyke, Biology Major/Philosophy Minor, SU Junior
“Faced with challenging topics, important discussion, and expressive growth, my cohort grew stronger together and became what I believe is the true Seattle U student; dedicated to being social justice warriors in our futures, I know each of us will walk away from the Honors program with the heart and mind to do so."
Lauren Silva, Anthropology/History Double Major, SU Junior
“The Honors Program is a challenge, but this a challenge worth facing. I climbed mountains created out of years of history. I battled through waves of literary texts. I fought with philosophy from ages past. This program is difficult—but the reward it worth it. Climbing to the summit to the present time. Floating in the midst of literary worlds. Meditating with philosophers. This program is amazing—and I’m so glad I chose to do it.”
Hanna Poole, Creative Writing Major/Business Administration Minor, SU Junior
“I especially appreciate the opportunity as a business student to expose and immerse myself in such a strong survey of philosophical, historical and literary traditions. I have become a much stronger student and, more importantly, a better person as a result of my experience in the Honors Program.”
Kellen O’Connor, Economics Major, SU Graduate
Honors graduates are employed in such diverse fields as law, education, medicine, social work, public administration, business and personnel management and foreign service.
Seattle U Honors alumna Serena Oduro was a finalist for both a Rhodes Scholarship and a Marshall Scholarship, among the most prestigious national fellowships. Serena graduated from Seattle University in 2020 as a Sullivan Scholar with a major in History and minors in Business Administration, Chinese and Philosophy. This highly-accomplished student was the university's first Rhodes finalist since 2005.
"I think incoming students should apply to the program because college is about growth, and growth requires challenge. The Honors program can definitely be challenging, but it is also incredibly rewarding. The program offers a unique way of learning that is intended to help you develop skills that really do translate into the world outside of the classroom. The professors who teach in the program are exemplary, the cohort-model provides support as well as promoting active learning, and the four-year scholarship and priority registration are, of course, additional benefits."
Our alumni are also represented on our faculty. Dr. Veith joined the Seattle U faculty in 2012. He graduated from the University Honors program with his degree in Philosophy and Psychology in 2005. He earned his Master’s degree in existential-phenomenological psychotherapy from Seattle U and his PhD in philosophy from Boston College. He teaches required philosophy courses in the core curriculum as well as humanities seminars on political identity, the politics of remembrance, and the concept of dignity.
Audra Lawlor, an Honors alumna, followed 10 successful years on Wall Street with launching her own business on Orcas Island. Her business, Girl Meets Dirt, creates handmade, small-batch artisanal preserves using locally-sourced fruit. Her products are available around the Northwest and as far away as New York.
The Honors Program frequently co-sponsors visiting writers and scholars to the University. Honors students are invited to participate in such events by attending presentations or receptions for distinguished guests.
Each year the Honors Program sponsors the Touchstone Lecture. The lecture is often given by a faculty member who teaches in the program, but in some years an outside speaker is invited to speak on a topic of importance.
Some Honors students are able to serve on the program's Honors Council. Representatives chosen from the each cohort meet quarterly with the program directors to discuss matters such as student concerns about curriculum, instruction and upcoming Honors events.
Each year Seattle University Honors students take part in the Honors Northwest Symposium. The Research Symposium is a fun and friendly event which provides a great chance for Seattle University Honors students to meet Honors students from neighboring universities. The symposium provides an opportunity to showcase the high quality work produced by our Seattle University cohorts.
Each quarter our students take part in Honors Plenary events. It may be a lecture on philosophy or economics, a museum tour, or a trip to the theatre. These events include all the students in the cohort as well as their professors.
Every Honors student receives an Honors scholarship. Spring quarter of sophomore year, many Honors students apply for and receive, Naef or Bannan scholarships. While still in the program some Honors students have been awarded Fulbright awards to pursue summer studies in New York or London.
In addition, the Honors program has produced many Truman Scholars. The rigors of our program make Honors students strong candidates for such award opportunities.
Periodically, during the year, Honors students and faculty gather just for fun. It may be to build gingerbread houses, go swing dancing, or celebrate the end of the academic year.