Howard Community College is proud to be home to two long-standing and well-respected Honors programs – The James W. Rouse Scholars Program and The Frederick K. Schoenbrodt Scholars Program. Both programs center around rigorous academic coursework and opportunities like study abroad, independent research, and service and community engagement, which connect the classroom with the real world. Honors students work closely with a specialized academic advisor to plan and register for unique Honors courses, which are offered in a wide range of subjects and emphasize depth of inquiry as well as the cultivation of a scholarly community among Honors students. Further, Honors courses are taught by faculty who are committed to providing a high level of academic rigor and critical thinking.
All Honors students are eligible to participate in a special year-long Honors Capstone program, which gives students the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills they have developed over the course of their HCC studies. Capstone projects can be completed in any academic discipline, with recent topics including the Fibonacci sequence in plants, the social significance of body modifications, and the musicological characteristics of heavy metal, to name only a few. Students present their capstone results in the annual HCC Scholars Symposium, and many also successfully publish their work in student research journals.
Because of the highly regarded reputation and challenging coursework associated with HCC’s Honors programs, our students have a long history of transferring to some of the nation’s most prestigious institutions to pursue further education. In recent years, multiple HCC Honors students have also received prestigious transfer scholarships such as the Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship, the University of Maryland Frederick Douglass Scholarship, and the University System of Maryland Regents Scholars Program.
In addition, all Honors students are eligible for a special scholarship during each semester in which they are actively enrolled in an Honors program. The scholarship can only be used to help cover tuition and fees. No additional application is needed; awards are based on academic performance and evidence of progress toward Honors program requirements. Qualifying students will be notified April 15.
The James W. Rouse ScholarsEstablished in 1992, this program is designed for graduating high school seniors. Students must be able to commit to two years (i.e., four semesters) of full-time study (i.e., 12 credits or more each semester) at HCC. With a cohort of other Rouse Scholars, students will progress through a four-semester sequence of Honors seminars that emphasize academic research, civic and community engagement, and leadership development. The seminars culminate in an individual capstone project that gives students the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills they have developed over the course of the program (see above). Beyond the seminars and capstone projects, students are required to participate in a minimum of four Honors courses during their time at HCC.
The Frederick K. Schoenbrodt ScholarsThis program is designed for students who are at various stages of their educational journey. It combines challenging Honors courses with independent, faculty-supervised projects in order to provide a more flexible experience. Therefore, there is no minimum time commitment to the program, and students can take a full- or part-time credit load each semester. While participation in four consecutive Honors seminars is not required, Schoenbrodt Scholars are strongly encouraged to enroll in the Honors Capstone sequence and also benefit from research opportunities, community and civic engagement, study abroad and global education, and leadership development.
Other Potential Benefits
- Experiencing a study abroad program and/or classroom-based international exchange
- Participating in a service or community engagement project tied to your program of study, including alternative winter and spring break programs
- Engaging in faculty-led research
- Working with a career development specialist
- Receiving tailored academic and transfer advising
- Developing leadership skills through specialized programming
- Receiving an invitation to join national honors societies such as Phi Theta Kappa
- Gaining valuable experience to add to one’s resume and/or college transfer application
- Publishing in the Journal of Research in Progress -- a peer-reviewed publication