Dean College offers programs and opportunities for academically talented and motivated students looking for an in-depth approach to their studies.

Dean College Honors Program 

The Dean College Honors Program seeks interesting and interested students to explore a rigorous interdisciplinary approach to the learning experience. The program provides academically talented and motivated students an opportunity to participate in stimulating and challenging courses, seminars and colloquia during their time at Dean. Exciting cultural and co-curricular activities outside of the traditional classroom environment supplement and enhance the learning experience. 

Honors Courses A professor helping a student study.

Through Honors courses, you will explore subject matter more deeply and further develop critical thinking and writing skills. Honors courses are offered in the All-College Core, various majors, and special topics.

The Interdisciplinary Honors Colloquium 

This unique special topic seminar is presented through the perspective of multiple disciplines, allowing you to discover the relationship between content and context. Recent offerings have included The Story & Self, Death & Dying, The Value of Art, The Evolution of Nike, and Black Lit Matters, to name a few.

Cultural and Co-Curricular Activities

The cultural and co-curricular activities component supplements the classroom experience and underscores Dean's liberal arts-based philosophy. Best known is the Honors-sponsored international trip. Destinations for this annual travel-study experience have included Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland, Greece, Germany and more! three students posing for a photo holding roses after a honors program ceremony.

Some of the activities take place closer to “home,” including field trips to local sites such as the Harvard Museum of Natural History and the New England Holocaust Memorial, theatre performance “talk backs,” guest speakers in class, and more. Honors students find myriad ways to express and share their learning, too; they give on-campus presentations and utilize visual display cases as well as creating new media products such as podcasts, blogs, and vlogs.

The Dean College Honors Program provides students with unique  advising, extracurricular and networking opportunities.  During their first year Honors students will be invited to a series of monthly noontime discussions with the Director of the Honors Program, Dr. Rob Lawson, and the Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Scott Sibley. There are three of these sessions per semester. They provide a wonderful opportunity for students to learn more about the Honors Program and to be able to discuss their academic journey with Dr. Lawson and Dr. Sibley.  These monthly meetings also offer space for discussions of current events and topics of interest to our Honors students

Receptions and Celebrationsa group of students standing with their hand up while being inducted into an organization.

  • Reception welcoming new students into the program, held early in the Fall semester; this includes recognition of students who recently earned Sophomore Honors Distinction 
  • Awarding Honors Scholar status every semester to students who excel in the program
  • An annual celebration at the end of the Spring semester recognizing students about to graduate as Honors Scholars

Honors Scholar Status

  • Enroll - Take honors courses
  • Participate - Be a member of a club, organization, cast or crew; be a peer tutor or volunteer, etc.
  • Attend - Go to performances, museums, special lectures and presentations, etc.
  • Excel - Earn a minimum GPA of 3.5

Honors Program Admission

There are two opportunities to be admitted into the Dean College Honors Program: 

  • Upon Admission to Dean College - selected based on a strong GPA and academic record with honors and AP coursework in high school. 
  • Once enrolled at Dean College and seeking to deepen the college experience by joining the program (upon Director's approval and with strong grades). Students may apply to join the program at any time during their Dean career.

Transfer students are selected based on a cumulative college GPA of at least 3.0. 

Dr. Rob Lawson

Dr. Rob Lawson

Director of the Honors Program and Professor of History