About the University Honors College
The University Honors College offers capable and motivated students exciting intellectual experiences to develop an integrative perspective extending beyond the confines of individual majors and disciplines. The mission of the University Honors College is to be a catalyst for scholarly excellence in undergraduate education. The College advances, coordinates, and administers active learning and undergraduate research opportunities for students across the campus. Through its multi-disciplinary academic and student support programs, the College serves as a locus for inquiry, discovery, leadership and engagement. Above all, the College helps students develop a competitive edge for career options as well as for admission to the best graduate and professional schools in the nation.
The College houses the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship, and three University Honors academic programs: the University Honors Core Program, the Natural and Complex Systems Program, and the Forty-Ninth State Fellows Program. In addition, the College sponsors an optional living/learning community in one of UAA's residence halls. The Honors Floor, comprised of the Freshman Experience Wing and the Returning Honors Students Wing, is located in East Hall. Living on the "Honors Floor" is an excellent opportunity to live with students of similar academic commitment and abilities.
Initiated by Chancellor Edward Lee Gorsuch, the University Honors Program was founded by UAA professor Ronald Spatz in 1998. In its 2000 accreditation review of UAA, the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges described the University Honors Program as a "small but energetic program" and singled it out for special commendation for providing a center of activity "to support student inquiry and research." In March 2007 the University Honors College was established and professor Spatz was named to head the new college as its dean.