Honors Program: University Scholars

Students studying

Seattle Pacific honors students are intellectually curious, seek truth, and love to learn about everything.

One of the first of its kind, the SPU honors program has an interdisciplinary, liberal arts framework designed as an alternative to the regular General Education curriculum. It asks our highest-achieving students to go deeper into the key questions at the heart of our lives, our faith, and our world in a seminar-based curriculum.

Honors Program News

Freshmen Summer Reading

It's the annual tradition! 

All incoming freshmen will be reading Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond over the summer to be ready for their fall quarter University Seminar.

As a University Scholar, you will:

  • Learn from and engage with world-class faculty from across the disciplines
  • Push yourself to use the intellectual, personal, creative, and social abilities God has given you
  • Discover what it means to learn in a rich intellectual community of fellow scholars
  • Forge deep, lifelong friendships with other honors students over your four years in the program
  • Graduate prepared to engage your discipline,  joining the ranks of SPU honors alumni who have gone on to success in careers and graduate programs

"What does it mean to be human?"

This question is an over-arching theme of the honors curriculum. We examine this idea across all courses through the lenses of history, theology, philosophy, science, social science, and the arts. And contained within this thematic thread are many other sub-questions too; questions such as:

  • “What is the relationship between a society and an individual?”
  • “What is the relationship between reason and faith in a given time period or within a given text?”
  • “How do we account for evil?”
  • “How do we account for violence?”
  • …and many others.

Only 40 students are accepted in the University Scholars program every year and there is always a waiting list for admission. If you are interested in learning more, please explore this website for further information about courses, professors, students, alumni, and application information. And always feel free to contact the Honors Program Director Christine Chaney at cchaney@spu.edu.



What's amazing about the SPU honors program

Liz Knodel is one of SPU's outstanding University Scholars and the winner of the President's Citation for 2018 (as the top graduate of the year). Here she tells us more about the amazing honors program at SPU -- and how it helped change her life.

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