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 presents 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 standing in front of the classroom next to the board teaching a lesson to students.

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; small group and individualized studies are also available.

The Interdisciplinary Honors Colloquium 

This unique seminar is presented through the perspective of multiple disciplines, allowing you to discover the relationship between content and context. Topics have included Race, Class & Power, Climate Change, Social Activism, The Music and Literature of the Great Depression and The American Dream.

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.

The Honors Leadership Council, comprised of students and a faculty advisor, plans regular events both on and off campus, including monthly honors program meetings, speakers, networking events, community service, scholar recognition events, and fun off-campus outings, taking advantage of our proximity to Boston and Providence.  

Activities in the Honors Program 

  • Monthly Honors Program meetings for all honors program students
  • Leadership opportunities through the Honors Leadership Council
  • Off-campus excursions (e.g., Kraft Sports Group/Gillette tours; Providence Water Fire; Boston tours)
  • On-campus speakers and events (talk-backs with directors of on-campus plays, musicals and concerts; small group discussions and dinner with Dr. Roxanne Prichard; small group discussions with DLI speaker)
  • Spring semester research course coupled with a trip abroad during spring break 

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

  • Welcome new students into the program, held early September
  • Recognize students who earn honors scholar status in a given semester, held in late January/early February
  • Recognize students who are graduating with honors scholar status, held in April/May

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 3.3

Honors Program Admission

a professor stands with a recent student graduate and their family outside of Dean Hall during commencement.

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

  • Upon Admission to Dean College - selected based on a strong academic record including a cumulative GPA above 3.0 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