Kansas Honors College

<p>My son is looking at Kansas' Honors College. What do other parents and current students think of it? What are the greatest benefits to being in the college? Also, he'd be applying from out of state. Does that influence admission to the college? Thanks.</p>

<p>My daughter applied and was admitted to the honors program starting this fall. She's out of state as well but I don't know if that affects admissions. It's fairly competitive. There's a requirement for a minimum of six honors classes and one freshman seminar -- not sure what else is involved. We were there for orientation last week and the honors kids got a lot of hand holding in course registration which was great. The biggest advantages I see are: priority registration, specialized advising and priority housing. It's one way to make a big school a little smaller. Good luck.</p>

<p>cjcollege, I hope you will have some time to post some observations about your daughter's experience at KU as she gets settled in. My son is thinking about applying for Fall 2012. He won't be in the honors college, but any general observations you have would be quite useful since the KU forum is pretty quiet. Good luck to you both.</p>

<p>I'm a current student in the honors program at KU. It's pretty much the best thing ever at KU for smart students. At KU, there's a lot of diversity in the academic backgrounds of the students, so the honors program really helps honors students feel challenged in college. </p>

<p>Honors classes are a LOT of fun. I was going to take regular biology last spring, but switched into honors biology after seeing how many people were asleep in the regular biology class (it was 8:00, so fair) I LOVED my honors biology class (BIOL 151) with a professor who was actually interesting and friendly and a great resource on campus. I have very little biology background, and I didn't feel it was comparatively any more difficult than BIOL 150 (regular biology)</p>

<p>I'm not sure about the honors seminars, as they're a new thing this year for honors students. I know my tutorial (quantum mechanics, philosophy, and fiction) was super awesome and a great way to meet other honors freshmen. Also, my advisor was my professor for that class, so I got to know him better, and he got to know me better, which means better letters of rec in the future.</p>

<p>The Honors program at KU also is involved with a lot of honor societies and scholarships at the national level, so they are always around to help out with that sort of thing. For example, my honors chem prof recommended that I apply for some scholarships, and I actually won one of them, which was super exciting and now I have a full ride to KU. </p>

<p>Specialized advising and priority enrollment are probably the two BEST things about the honors program though. From what I've heard, regular advising isn't that great. I had some friends who weren't in the honors program and they were WAY jealous of our advising, since their advisers didn't know much about their fields of study and don't really have a connection with their advisees. Priority enrollment is so awesome - you get to enroll before the basketball players (and all other athletes) and before all of the other students at KU, even seniors, as a member of the honors program. So, you definitely can get into the classes you want. </p>

<p>The honors program even has a special building on campus especially for honors students to hang out and study. There are a few classrooms there too, so some honors classes are held there. It's really close to most of the residence halls on Daisy Hill, so unless you're in the schol halls, GSP, Corbin, or Oliver, you can probably walk there in 5 minutes or less. They hold barbecues and other special events for honors students - we had a Harry Potter movie night there last year, which was a lot of fun, including the butterbeer.</p>

<p>I definitely agree with cjcollege that it makes KU a LOT smaller. Honors classes are so much smaller. My usual example is genchem/honors genchem: 1000 students in the largest auditorium on campus vs. less than 40 students where your professor comes to your labs and makes sure people understand what's going on and makes an effort to be available to help you succeed. </p>

<p>I don't think being out-of-state affects whether you'll be accepted into the honors program or not. It's your academic record, and the types of scholarships that KU is offering you, I think. If you get into the honors program, you definitely want to consider KU. The honors program is super fantastic, and I promise you won't be disappointed.</p>

<p>wow what a great post xtrasparkle...thank you so much for taking the time to write it! How do you like the campus in general? I have a rising senior and we are looking at Iowa State and also Alabama. </p>

<p>Is there a strong Greek Life? DD would be in Honors program. Is there an Honors dorm? Her major would be athletic training. How much attendance is there at football/basketball games?</p>

<p>Sorry for all the questions, but this forum has been so quiet that it's been tough to get answers! Thank you so much!</p>

<p>So I know that the requirements for the honors college are around a 31 ACT (or equivalent SAT), but not everyone who applies gets accepted right? About what percentage of kids get in who apply (just a ballpark guess)?</p>

<p>buzymom-My S is a very happy OOS student at KU. The campus is beautiful and located in a great college town. Lawrence and its residents are very supportive of KU and the students. Houses fly KU flags and residents sport KU colors. The city of Lawrence is very active and has a vibrant music scene. You can view some pictures I posted on the CampusVibe section of CC.
University</a> of Kansas - Videos, Photos, and Visit Reports</p>

<p>The student body and administration have been very friendly and welcoming. My S has been able to get the classes and advising he needed, although students do need to learn to advocate for themselves. Plenty of assistance is available but no hand holding. My S is on the shy side but after a learning period, has managed to navigate the big school system. There is a healthy Greek presence but my S chose not to go Greek and has had no trouble finding friends and enjoying a social life at KU. </p>

<p>I believe Honors students can elect to live on Honors floors in Templin Hall. There is also themed Living/Learning Communities housing. Scholarship Halls offer a unique living experience where all the residents (about 50/house) perform household chores in exchange for lower housing rates. They offer a real community feel. There are also a lot of off campus housing options and the KU shuttle services several of the area apartment complexes.</p>

<p>I'm sure you know that sports, and particularly basketball, are a big part of the typical KU student's life. Basketball games are always sold out and being in Allen Fieldhouse on gameday is just an incredible experience. The Fieldhouse is often listed as one of (if not) the best places in America to watch college basketball. Watching the pre-game video and hearing the Rock, Chalk chant will give you chills. Of course, perennially contending for a national championship always helps! Football is a little different. Winning the Orange Bowl in 2008 was a real boost but the program has hit a rough patch in recent years. The games are attended and supported, but at KU, basketball is king.</p>

<p>Our family has been very happy with our S's decision to attend KU.</p>

<p>Thank you so much for the added info my3sons! Nice to get some insight. We are scheduling a visit for October so that she can see it while school is in session. Right now her top three are Alabama, Iowa State and ku. Honors and merit money are the two most important things right now. So we have applications in and are waiting for more info.</p>

<p>Do you have any local places to eat that you recommend? Any must see local sights?</p>

<p>DD will major in Athletic Training so we will schedule a department tour as facilities are very important to her.</p>

<p>Thanks so much for your help!</p>

<p>I love campus. So beautiful, and great exercise to walk through. There is a healthy amount of Greek life on campus, I agree. </p>

<p>Right now, a lot of Honors students live in Templin, which has renovated 4-person suites and 2-person suites. There's a specific honors floor in Templin and in Ellsworth, but I don't know much about the one in Ellsworth. Templin is known for it's studious attitude, compared to the "community service" Lewis, "artsy" Hashinger, "preppy/rich" Ellsworth, "partying" Oliver, and "ghetto" McCollum. There are honors students in each of the dorms., though. Templin's pretty quiet, even on weekends, never have fire alarms pulled as pranks, the kids are all pretty nice. </p>

<p>Other options for dorm life include the scholarship halls, which is a healthy mix of Greek life (social events) and residence hall living. There's weekly chores assigned to students to work around their class schedules and much lower food/housing costs because of those chores (I think I'm saving >$2000 this year by switching to a schol hall) There's quite a few honors students living in the scholarship halls, but most people move off-campus by their junior and senior years, since housing in Lawrence is pretty cheap. </p>

<p>Football games are alright, but everyone knows that basketball games are the BEST. I didn't have tickets to any basketball games last year since I didn't buy the $150 pass that gets you entry to all the home football games you want. The $150 pass doesn't guarantee you tickets to basketball games unless you camp in Allen Fieldhouse with your friends. It's a weird process, but the serious KU basketball fan students can tell you how it's done. </p>

<p>BTW, I know KU's changing the way scholarships work next year. Might want to try looking in the Lawrence Journal-World, since they have a breakdown of it in a recent article (maybe 2 weeks old). Higher GPA requirements to renew your scholarship, but more students will be receiving scholarships under the new plan. And you'll also know exactly how much money you'll be getting from KU, instead of hoping the KU financial aid office bites on your application. </p>

<p>Anywhere on Mass Street is generally good, and I hear that 23rd Street Brewery is an awesome place to go too. Mass Street is downtown Lawrence, lots of shops, bars, and restaurants to visit. </p>

<p>Requirements for the Honors program are kind of fuzzy, even to students in the Honors program. I know the ACT score should be >30 and a good high school GPA, but I don't know whether they look at weighted or unweighted. There's an essay in the application for honors program applicants, and I think you can win $500 from the Honors program for writing one of the top 4 essays of the incoming freshman class. So glad to help prospective students to KU :)</p>

<p>I'd like to add my thanks for all of the excellent posts on this thread. Keep it coming! It's so great to get an inside view.</p>

<p>We have a few Lawrence favorites that we always try to hit on our visits. Dinner at Free State Brewery and breakfast at Milton's (both on Mass St) would give a great feel for the local flavor. Ingredient is a good place for fresh salads and Wheatfield's is another local breakfast/lunch institution. We enjoyed a very nice upscale Italian dinner at Teller's, which is located in an old converted 1800's bank building (great atmosphere). The new Oread hotel on campus has several different levels of restaurants from pub-style to fine dining. There really is no end to the dining options in Lawrence.</p>

<p>If you will be staying overnight, I can recommend the higher-end Eldridge and Oread hotels, as well as the more standard Hampton Inn and Springhill Suites. I will warn you that there are some hotels in town that are very worn, which is why I mentioned a few where we have had good experiences. </p>

<p>Mass St. is really the center of life in Lawrence and offers lots of unique little shops, coffee houses and restaurants to explore. If you venture out on Iowa St. beyond the KU campus you will hit all the big box stores, chain restaurants and a 12 screen movie theater. </p>

<p>Lawrence is really the quintessential friendly midwestern college town. My northeastern born and raised son just loves it.</p>