Frequently Asked Questions

How many students are in the Lee Honors College?

  • There are between 1500 and 1600 undergraduates in the college. This is about eight percent of the undergraduate students at WMU.
  • We have students in the college pursuing programs of study in all seven of the academic colleges (aviation, arts and sciences, business, education and human development, engineering and applied sciences, fine arts, health and human services).

What are the specific advantages of being in the honors college?

  • We offer small (at or under 20 students) honors only courses (many for general education credit).
  • We offer scholarships to honors students to support research, study abroad and travel.
  • We offer unique programs, like Study in the States.
  • We have a peer mentoring program and advisors who only serve honors students.
  • We organize lots of fun activities (picnics, community service events, special lectures/seminars, bus trips to Chicago and Detroit, a 5K run and much more).

Can I apply to be in the Lee Honors College my freshman year?

  • The honors college issues invitations to all students with a high school GPA of 3.6 or higher and an ACT composite score of 26 or higher.
  • Students who do not meet one or both of these criteria may apply to the honors college by submitting a letter of support from a teacher or counselor and a statement of purpose. Your statement of purpose should explain why being a member of the honors college is important to you, why you merit consideration despite not meeting the entrance criteria and include your education plans and career goals. Specific requirements for writing this statement can be found on the application.

What if I want to join the Lee Honors College after my freshman year, is that possible?

  • Yes. If you have two consecutive semesters of a 3.5 GPA or higher you will automatically be invited to join the honors college. You may do so up until three semesters prior to your scheduled graduation.
  • If you have a 4.0 GPA in your first semester, you will also receive an invitation to join the Lee Honors College.
  • While it is possible to join later, we recommend you join early. Joining the honors college after your first year may require you to take additional coursework as you may miss out on honors sections of courses in your program that are taken during your freshman year. 

What are the advantages of living in Ackley, the honors college residence hall?

  • Ackley is the Lee Honors College residence hall located in the Valleys, right next to main campus. The advantage of living there is that you will live in a community with other Lee Honors College students just as motivated and goal-oriented as you. Also, when attending cultural events and volunteer hours, you will have met friends that can join you. It's more fun to go to volunteer and cultural events in a group so it becomes a social activity as well. Another advantage is that our Peer Student Success Team mentors, successful upperclassmen who are hired to mentor and support freshman honors students, hold office hours in Ackley every weekday.

What are the requirements for the Lee Honors College students?

  • Maintain a 3.5 GPA
  • Complete six honors courses before graduation
  • Complete 20 hours of community service per year
  • Attend four cultural events in your freshman year and two in your sophomore year
  • Complete an honors thesis

Will all of my honors courses be in the Lee Honors College building?

  • Not necessarily. Some will but others may be in the specific college buildings of your major.

Is the coursework harder in honors classes?

  • Not necessarily. Most of the time, the honors professors assign less homework, but expect students to come to class prepared, engaged and ready to learn. The professors are highly qualified, but also expect you to put in the time outside of class reviewing your notes and text without having to assign additional homework for a grade.

Will I be able to register for classes early if I am in the Lee Honors College?

  • Yes. You will have priority registration. That's one of the many benefits of being a part of the honors college. Registering for classes can be stressful if the classes you are looking for are full so having the ability to register early relieves that stress.

I heard that every honors student has to write a 100 page research paper. Is that true?

  • No. Every honors student does complete an honors thesis, but there is no page requirement. Furthermore, many honors students complete "project-based theses," appropriate to their area of study. Examples of honors theses include engineering senior design projects, creative works of fiction, original documentaries, novel educational curricula, original performances of works of art and much more.

What's available to me in the Lee Honors College building?

  • Our newly remodeled building consists of a lounge for studying (or napping) in between classes, a library with computers open to the public as well as a full kitchen for making a cup of coffee or storing lunches during a long day on campus. Come check it out.
  • The building also has three classrooms (including one high-tech room) and a seminar room equipped for video-conferencing.

Why is an honors education important?