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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the admission requirements?

The Honors Program at Minnesota State Mankato looks especially for students who have a desire to develop leadership, research, and global citizenship skills. We are interested in students who want to explore second languages, who want to learn more about their world, and who want to work effectively with people from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and countries. We do not have a minimum ACT score or class rank, but our average ACT score is a 28.5 and our students have a history of tackling life’s opportunities and challenges.

When do I apply?

Most incoming first-year and transfer students apply to the program before the end of January prior to the Fall semester, but we do accept applications until February 15. After this date, we accept applications on a space available basis.

Is there a cost to participate in the Honors Program?

Nope. Just your own dedication and commitment to being the best that Minnesota State Mankato has to offer.

Are there special scholarships, grants, or awards available for honors students?

While almost all of our students come to the university with some sort of scholarship package, the Honors Program does not offer scholarships or grants to incoming students. Students who are committed to the program have the opportunity to compete for a Competency Development Grant, which allows funding for opportunities related to developing one or more of the competencies. Once students arrive on campus, the Honors Program staff regularly announces scholarship opportunities and provides scholarship award mentoring services.

What are the advantages of participating in the program?

Where do we start? Small class sizes. Outstanding professors. Establishing friendships and networks with peers who epitomize excellence wherever they go. Guest lectures. Social activities. Research awards for your own individual research with faculty in your major area of study.

How is the faculty selected?

Honors faculty are selected by the Minnesota State, Mankato Honors Council upon recommendation by the honors students. Minnesota State Mankato faculty apply to teach in the honors program because they believe that their proposed course will help to develop student leadership, research, and global citizenship skills. Faculty are selected by Honors students and the Honors Council on the basis of their reputation for teaching and research excellence.

Will I still graduate in four years?

For the most part, as long as you want to and are committed to doing so. Students who choose multiple majors or minors may realize that they need to take more credits per semester than their peers. Students in high credit majors (Engineering, Nursing, etc...) may have to take courses over the summers. Otherwise, every honors student should be able to graduate in four years. Doing so requires careful planning with your advisors and a commitment to your academic life.

What are honors classes like?

Some people believe that honors classes are simply more work, but that is not the case. Honors students do not write twice as many research papers, or read twice as many books as students taking non-honors courses. Our program focuses on skill development and reflective learning. Classes often function as discussion seminars rather than lectures. And they dive beneath the textbook syntheses offered in other courses to encourage the students to uncover how and why the body of knowledge they are studying was created, and to understand what debates undergird it.

What if I decide not to continue with the Honors Program?

Honors programs aren’t for everyone, but you’ll gain much and lose little in trying it out. Since the first two years of the program are focused on general education, you won’t lose time toward graduation and your academic goals when you take honors courses. Plus, you will have gained friendships and relationships with professors that you might not have otherwise had. Finally, the courses you took will have honors designation. Even if you don’t finish the program, you’ll be able to indicate that at least some of your courses were especially designed for high-ability students like yourself.