Honors program

The Undergraduate Honors program provides special opportunities for research and mentorship. Honors graduates are prepared for active engagement in research and other scholarly work with the necessary knowledge, skills and values predictive of successful graduate study.

Benefits of the Honors program:

  • Work directly with faculty on meaningful health science research

  • Participate in a student mentorship program

  • Attend speaker presentations, professional meetings, and shadow specialized practitioners

  • Cultivate leadership abilities through community service and Honors program activities 

  • Interact with leaders in the nursing profession

  • Engage with faculty in small group settings

  • Learn through special Honors seminars


2015 Honors Graduates

The UMSN Honors program sets high expectations for its selected students. Honors students are expected to actively engage in all activities of the program, including:

  • Take Honors seminars in addition to standard UMSN curriculum:
    • NURS 295: Sophomore level honors seminar (2 credits)
    • NURS 395: Junior level honors seminar (2 credits)
    • NURS 495: Honors project (minimum 2 credits)
    • NURS 528: graduage core course, Master's level nursing theory (3 credits).
  • Under guidance of a faculty mentor, produce an Honors project demonstrating research skills in nursing or health sciences.
  • Actively disseminate scholarly work through publication, presentations and participation in UMSN Research Day. 
  • Attend all Honors program meetings, seminars and forum.
  • Participate in designated community service activities each year. 
  • Maintain Honors designation, including minimum GPA requirements and adherence to the U-M academic and professional code of conduct.
  • See Honors program handbook for more information.

Examples of Honors student work

  • Grace Kanzawa, senior Honors program student, and Dr. Ellen Lavoie Smith received the 2015 Honors Program Outstanding Project Award for their work onGrace Kanzawa "Chronic Neuropathic Pain Patterns in Women before and after Breast Cancer Surgery: a 6-Month Longitudinal Correlational Study." It was selected by faculty based on significance and background, objectives, methods, results, conclusion, presentation, and publishable product. Grace's paper was described by faculty as impressive, publishable, and the quality of a graduate student product. 

  • Senior Karin Thomas's poster, "Describing the incidence, patterns, and severity of vincristine induced peripheral neuropathy in children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia," took first place among the Honors students at 2014 Dean's Research Day.

  • Senior Jacob Wardach's poster "The role of orexins in hypothalamic-mediated analgesia in neuropathic pain," received the Students' Choice Award at Dean's Research Day.

  • Senior Jillian Kay and her faculty mentor, Dr. Jody R. Lori, received the The Outstanding Honors Project Award for their work on "Texting from the bush: Data collecting using SMS text messaging in areas of low network coverage from low-literacy providers." The winning paper was selected by faculty based on significance and background, objectives, methods, results, conclusion, presentation, and publishable product. 

Prospective Honors students

Application to the Honors Program is by invitation. Students meeting eligibility requirements will be contacted at the beginning of the fall term of sophomore year. Applications from eligible students are reviewed by UMSN faculty and the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies. Select applicants will be invited for an interview. Following these interviews, finalists are selected for the Honors Program. Selected students start the Honors Program beginning sophomore year.

A substantial element of the Honors Program is a mentored experience with UMSN or U-M faculty member. Prospective Honors students are encouraged to explore faculty profiles to learn more about their work.

The school supports an interdisciplinary approach that gives students the opportunity to pursue their interests, including the possibility of matching a students with a faculty member at U-M outside of the School of Nursing.

Find a mentor


Lead faculty for the Honors program is Dr. Erin Kahle.