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Uconn Honors Program

FravishFravish Posts: 9Registered User New Member
edited September 2012 in University of Connecticut
I am writing this to give some info on the Uconn honors program.
My son is a freshman engineering student in the Uconn honors program. Today was his sign-up day for next semesters courses. All the "core" honors courses were already closed so none were available to sign up for. Apparently you are required to complete 5 by the end of your sophomore year. How do you do that when none are available to you? The other honors gen ed courses all have nothing to do with his line of study or conflict with other required courses.
My daughter (a senior at Uconn) said her friend (also a senior) has had the same problem trying to complete her honors requirements too.
Maybe "The Philosopher" could comment on the honors program. Has it expanded too fast, such that there are more honors students than there are classroom seats in honors classes?
Having an honors program that can't be accessed by the honors students is like having no honors program at all.

Just some food for thought for future students.
Post edited by Fravish on

Replies to: Uconn Honors Program

  • FravishFravish Posts: 9Registered User New Member
    Talked with my son again. It seems that what he meant is that all core honors courses that would fit with his schedule are closed. Apparently others are open but don't work with his schedule of required courses.
    End result is the same. Can't fulfill honors requirements if there are not enough seats available.
  • ThePhilosopherThePhilosopher Posts: 1,661Registered User Senior Member
    It is an interesting question.

    Expanding the Honors program right now does seem to be contradictory to University budget cuts and the early retirement incentives which were offered.

    To graduate with Honors, however, is different from obtaining a sophomore certificate. Graduating with Honors does not require the certificate, and all necessary classes which would need to be taken are upper-level within the major, anyway.
  • FravishFravish Posts: 9Registered User New Member
    Part of "selling" the Honors program is the access to smaller classes that go more in depth in the studies than the regular classes. Not having access to those classes by honors students can be a letdown to students who are excited about acceptance in the Honors program.
  • ThePhilosopherThePhilosopher Posts: 1,661Registered User Senior Member
    I can certainly understand that. All I can say is that more options for him should be available down the line within his major.

    Additionally, the Honors program is much more than classes. There are lectures, seminars, and other opportunities available to only Honors students.
  • ParentSparkleParentSparkle Posts: 146Registered User Junior Member
    I was wondering if many students from the Engineering Department are also in the Honors program and live in the Honors dorm freshman year?

    I was wondering if data existed on the SAT score distribution of incoming kids in the Honors program?

    Does data exist on SAT score distribution of incoming kids in the Engineering Department?
    My son is an in-state Junior and last spring his scores were 690CR/740M, he takes the hardest classes available, and has a 96% GPA. (I'm very proud of him.)

    He likes project based learning, but can tolerate large lecture classes if need be. Does the Engineering Department offer alternative classes for Honors program kids? Are the core classes for the first few years large lecture-style?

    What about kids who don't know what branch of Engineering they are most interested in...are programs set up to help with this? Is it a problem?

    Any advice? Any suggestions of other schools to look into as well? Any ideas for summer job/experiences in the summers that would help him learn about the field before college?

    Thanks,
    PS
  • TaciturnTypeTaciturnType Posts: 242Registered User Junior Member
    I'm a freshman engineering major in the honors program (currently chemical, may change). Although I can't speak to the upper level courses, I can address your question about the dorms (we only live together the first year) and SAT scores/GPA.

    1) About 25% of the students in honors are engineers. My roommate is a civil, and I have met tons of engineers in honors. All honors students are required to live in Buckley the first year, but afterwards you can spread out. I'm hoping for Connecticut Commons next year, a very nice dorm in central campus with singles and nice bathrooms. Don't let anyone talk Buckley down too much. The dining hall isn't great, but South is ~5 minutes away (best dining hall on campus) and the dorms themselves are quite spacious and nice compared to other doubles on campus.

    2) I believe the mean M+CR was around 1430. I'm not exactly certain on that data. The last exact number I saw was from the entering class of 2010 @ 1400, and it has only been more competitive since then. I had a 680CR, 780M, and the cutoff is 1400, so your son should be fine.

    3) Try searching UConn's website for this. It's probably there somewhere. I think I remember hearing ~1280-1300 average for the entire SoE of the top of my head.

    4) Your first year of engineering will be large lectures at most universities (except perhaps MIT and the like). I know in chemical engineering that about half of the courses in the major are offered as honors sections (10-15 students). I'm not certain about the other engineering majors. I know BME likes to brag about their integration with honors. Check out honors.uconn.edu for more exact answers. In terms of project based learning, you can set up your schedule to have 1-2 labs per semester. I have an honors general chemistry lab right now, and it's very challenging. I know the upper division engineering courses are project based, particularly the senior design, many of which involve industry partners/funding.

    5) There's a 1 credit engineering course for first semester students designed to help you choose your major. So far it's been useless to me. Most of the upperclassmen are pretty helpful, however. I would suggest going to the professional engineering society meetings and asking students and professors there about what kind of work they do at the university. You'll get a much better answer than the cookie cutter powerpoints they repeat every year in the Orientation to Engineering course. That's how I could describe the school in general. They won't hand it to you, but it's all there if you want to go get it.

    6) Work on your essays a lot. I mean a lot. Not such a big deal for UConn, but if he's applying to prestigious privates, it matters. Definitely try and do something over the summer. Apply for early experience research for HS students. I was offered to apply for a position once, but was too lazy, and I deeply regret it. If you can't get into one of the engineering specific camps/organizations (the real ones are super competitive. Don't go to the ones you have to pay for, they're probably a scam) get some kind of job. It looks pretty bad if you don't do anything over the summer (doesn't matter much for UConn, but the prestigious privates will care).
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