I also got an invitation to apply, and, no, not everyone gets it (apparently this wasn't always the case, though? I think DHC used to be an open application, but this year it's invite only). I don't know exactly how many people are invited to apply though.
I obviously can't tell you what it's like, but I would also be interested to hear from anyone who can provide that info.
I do know that one of the biggest benefits of the program is priority registration for classes, which sounds REALLY nice. I'm kind of worried about getting the classes I want at a big school like Davis.
Found a thread on UCD's subreddit and there are some cool responses there, in case you guys were interested. I can't link it here so I'll just copy and paste the responses here:
Was DHC worth it?
That's a very complicated question, and can vary from person to person, but I would say yes, absolutely worth it. Almost anything you plan to do after graduation will be facilitated in some way by taking part in DHC. Grad schools and selective programs like TFA and the Peace Corps obviously will like it on your transcript. Employers will like that you have experiences to talk about in an interview, that most undergraduates don't have. And while you're still here, DHC forces you to interact with your professors through the honors contracts.
Are the classes interesting/difficult?
The seminar I took was very easy, sometimes more interesting and sometimes less. The honors contracts are exactly as interesting and difficult as you make them. You are in the driver's seat, and at first it might be awkward and you don't know what you're doing, but that's life. My first honors contract was just okay. I was really bad at keeping up with the work because it was truly independent; I only met with the professor a few times. But my honors contract now is great, I have a good relationship with the professor, and it's something I've wanted to do for the past two years and now I get a chance. In the past I've made youtube videos, I've given a presentation, now I decided I want to do some research. I applied for a grant and if things go well I may try for publication next year. Without DHC, I'd probably be graduating a quarter earlier, but I also probably wouldn't have done any of those things.
Biggest benefit of DHC?
It gets you involved, which leads to good outcomes of all sorts. Being involved gives you things to talk about during interviews, which gets you internships and jobs. It gives you more familiarity with campus resources, which helps you survive in the bad times and thrive in the good. It gives you letters of recommendation that actually say something because the professor knows you and knows your work. In some majors with a huge course load (cough ENGINEERING cough) it gives you a good reason to branch out into other subject matter, take the blinders off for a while. If you stay in the program until your junior or senior year, it also gets you involved with real-world problems to solve, and plenty of DHC students have gotten job offers from agencies or organizations they worked with in their junior or senior years.
What was the overall experience like?
I'm not going to blow sunshine up your ass. It can be hard, it can be frustrating, sometimes it can be too easy and that's frustrating. It's a program that relies on YOU to want to do things; it gives you support and resources and a certain amount of structure, but if YOU aren't pro-active and don't want to do anything extra, you'll end up being one of those people who says DHC is a joke. On the other hand, if you're self-motivated, if you make friends well, and if the whole college experience is pretty comfortable for you, DHC will be the best thing that ever happened to you.
Last edited by blueoctopus; 05-17-2013 at 07:09 PM.