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Requirements and Expectations

The Honors College is for SERIOUS and SELF-MOTIVATED students selected as freshmen or sophomores.
Application Deadlines:  

  • November 15 – accepted students will start participating in the following SPRING SEMESTER
  • April 15 – accepted students will start participating in the following FALL SEMESTER
  • July 15 – deadline for incoming freshmen for fall semester

Requirements to get in:


  • High School GPA of 3.0+
  • SAT score of 1200+ (math/critical reading)/ACT 17+
  • Community Service Commitment
  • Interest in Graduate Study
  • 2 letters of recommendation from HS teachers or community leaders
  • A 500 word essay
  • Application
  • Unofficial HS transcript

CONTINUING STUDENTS (freshmen and sophomores only):

  • SHAW cumulative GPA of at least 3.25
  • Successful completion of at least 30 hours
  • Community Service Commitment
  • Plans for Graduate Study
  • 2 letters of recommendation from Shaw professors
  • A 500 word essay
  • Application

Requirements to stay in:

  • Take at least 15 credit hours each semester
  • Maintain a cumulative 3.25 grade point average 
  • Take the appropriate honors colloquium each semester
  • Perform 15 hours of community service each semester
  • Participate in at least 2 Honors College-sponsored group service activities each semester 
  • Regularly attend Honors Scholars Association meetings
  • Have active involvement in at least one campus organization other than the Honors Scholars Association
  • Apply for at least one internship or coop each year
  • Apply for at least one scholarship each semester
  • Serve on at least two committees of the Honors Scholars Association

To be considered a “graduate ” of the Honors College, students must have completed the following:

  • Honors Colloquia - students must have completed no less than four honors colloquia (this is based on when students enter the program).  One is required each semester.
  • Senior Project - students must complete an original research project.  It will be presented at the “Senior Night of Excellence” to the Shaw University community.
  • Personal Statement - all seniors must compose a personal statement for graduate/professional school, whether they apply or not.  A copy will be kept in their file for future reference.
  • Application to Graduate/Professional Schools - students should plan on attending graduate or professional school, and will be guided in completing an application.  Students should notify the HC of their acceptance or attendance to graduate or professional school.
  • Letters of Recommendation - students should get at least three letters of recommendation from professors or those who can vouch for their academic performance.  If possible, copies of those letters will be kept in their HC file for future reference.
  • Résumé - students will be required to complete a resume based upon their collegiate career under the advisement of the director of the Center for Experiential Learning and Career Development.
  • Internships - students will be encouraged to seek internships annually, beginning in their freshman year.  Documentation of internships should be provided through a summary and may be used in the HC newsletter, Honor Code.
  • Scholarships - students will be required to apply for at least one outside scholarship annually.  The receipt of a scholarship will be an additional record of continual academic achievement.
  • Community Service - students must have completed at least 120 hours of DOCUMENTED community service.  (Community service logs should be kept each semester and turned in at the end of each semester.)

By the time you complete college, you will have:

  • Completed an original senior research project
  • Composed a personal statement for graduate/professional school,
  • Been guided in applying for graduate/professional schools
  • Letters of recommendation which can vouch for your academic performance
  • Completed a resume’ based on your collegiate career
  • Determined career possibilities and practical living needs
  • A record of community service and involvement