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Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I join?

  • The program focuses on the academic, cultural, social, and life skills everyone needs
  • Students build a sense of community with peers: they feel connected to each other, the program, and the college.
  • Classes are smaller, generally fifteen students, which means increased time with instructors
  • Classes involve more class discussion and less lecture: students take part in their own learning
  • Content focuses on cross-disciplinary connections between courses
  • Honors students enjoy priority registration
  • Students develop skills essential to transfer, workplace, and life success. They interact with College s administrators and receive opportunities to be part of special events and activities both on and off campus.
  • The Honors Program also can provide students an advantage when applying to top-ranked schools. The majority of our graduates transfer to their first-choice schools, many with scholarships.

Is there a separate application?

Yes, please visit the Honors Admissions page.

Does this cost anything?

No, we do not charge for this program.

Can I apply if I'm a part-time student?


Can I join the program if I'm only staying for one semester or one year?

Yes, many of our students come for a semester or a year while waiting to transfer to another school. This allows them to maintain high academic standards and get a jump start on those courses needed for any first-semester or first-year college student.

Does the Honors Program offer scholarship opportunities?

Yes, eligible students can apply for several scholarships specific to the program. More information can be found here.

Applications for all honors program scholarships are submitted to the SUNY Orange Honors Program, 115 South Street, Middletown, NY 10940.

These full-tuition scholarships are awarded to students from Orange County high schools who graduate in the top 10% of their class or have a 92% or higher average, and plan to attend SUNY Orange.

The President's Honors Program Scholarship for Outstanding Academic Achievement has the additional requirements that students must 1) carry a full-time class load, 2) maintain enrollment in the SUNY Orange Honors Program, and 3) earn a 3.2 or better GPA. This can be renewed for a second year. Funds do not cover summer courses.

The President's Scholarship covers the following:

  • Tuition (four semesters)
  • Fees
  • $500 towards textbooks each semester

One $1500 and one $1000 scholarship renewable for a second year. Student must be accepted to the SUNY Orange Honors Program and met one of the following requirements: 92 or better high school GPA, 1300 SAT score, or 30 ACT score.

Is the program more work? 

Unlike some AP or high school honors classes, our program is NOT meant to be more work, but different work. We don't stress an increased work load strictly for work s sake. Rather, we provide different work meant to stimulate the academic experience and involve the student in his/her own learning process.

How will this affect my degree?

The Honors Program works with a selected degree. Some of the courses that are required for the degree are taken as honors sections, rather than traditional ones. These, plus a math/science requirement, form the basis of the program. We have six additional required credits comprised of service learning, seminars and capstone.

How many honors credits will I need?

The basic program requires 18 honors credits (plus a math/science requirement), but many students take as many honors courses as possible because they prefer the smaller classes, the focused attention of faculty, and the ability to be more actively involved in their learning process.

You can find more information on specific program requirements here.

Are there honors courses in the summer?

We occasionally offer honors courses during the summer based on student demand or interest.

What are the graduation requirements?

To graduate with full honors, students must meet all of the course requirements plus maintain cumulative 3.5 GPA with no semester less than a 3.0 GPA.

Students who meet these requirements, wear a special honors medals and stole at graduation and their names are marked in the graduation program. They also receive a special honors designation on their diploma.

Students who meet the honors course requirements, but not the GPA, receive honors medals for graduation.

What happens when I transfer?

Each honors course taken will be listed as such on the transcript.

Where are you located?

We are located on the lower level of Morrison Hall on the Middletown campus. In Newburgh, the honors lounge is on the 4th floor of Tower.

Do you offer honors courses on the Newburgh campus?

Yes, we offer select honors courses on Newburgh campus.

I'm interested in the program. What do I do now?

Please follow these steps:

  • Complete the SUNY Orange application
  • Complete the Honors Program application
  • Send in one letter of recommendation from a teacher, counselor, administrator, or qualified community leader. Current SUNY Orange students may replace the formal letter with a short, emailed recommendation from one of their SUNY Orange professors
  • Take the SUNY Orange Placement test and place into English 101, with no support module
  • Complete the NewSTART Workshop
  • Attend an honors interview/roundtable meeting