The Pennsylvania State University-Schreyer Honors College

Why Schreyer?

"We Are…Penn State" is more than a cheer at sporting events.

It is part of this great university's DNA. It is about a sense of time and place shared by the hundreds of thousands of current students and alumni who call themselves Penn Staters.

It is the Penn State with some of the top-ranked academic programs in the country.

It's the Penn State that has been named by corporate recruiters as the No. 1 college and university for the future workforce.

It's the Penn State that annually is among the leading universities from across the nation in everything from the number of Fulbrights being awarded to the number of new graduates joining the ranks of Teach for America.

And it's the Penn State Dance Marathon, the largest student-run philanthropy in the world, and, yes, it's the Penn State with 107,000 football fans screaming at Beaver Stadium or 6,000 hockey fans screaming at Pegula Ice Arena or 7,200 wrestling fans screaming at Rec Hall.

The Schreyer Honors College is part of all of that Penn State.

Schreyer Scholars perform, play, study, contribute, debate, examine, dance, govern, cheer, and serve.

The Schreyer experience is how our students make the most of their time at Penn State. Schreyer Scholars set the standard for academic achievement and can be found taking the lead in clubs and organizations across campus.

We Are…Penn State.

Hallmarks of the SHC

The Nittany Lion by the Schreyer Honors College sign

For more than twenty years Penn State has offered a comprehensive honors program to students of exceptional ability in all majors. The Schreyer Honors College provides the best of a small college liberal arts experience within a major research university, with hundreds of student organizations and activities from which to choose. Each year, the SHC offers more than 200 honors courses, which by design have enrollments capped at twenty-five students (or less) and are taught by select faculty. Scholars can satisfy honors credit requirements through independent research, upper-level or graduate courses (depending on their standing), and “honors options” for regular courses. And in any given year dozens of Schreyer Scholars graduate with both bachelor and master degrees through the Integrated Undergraduate-Graduate Program. Hear our students share what made them choose Penn State and what it means to be a Schreyer Scholar.

Scholar with textbooks in front of Atherton Hall

All Scholars must complete a major piece of original research or creative work. The thesis is your opportunity to be a scholar--someone who contributes to knowledge. This is an experience most students obtain only if they attend graduate school. Our students have presented their research at national and international conferences and many theses have been published.

The electronic Honors Theses Archives provide a searchable database of honors theses submitted since Fall 2009.

Scholars meeting with former Irish president Mary Robinson

Leadership isn’t just about knowing what to do — it’s about how you do it. Clear communication, organizational skills, capitalizing on strengths, tapping in to other resources ledge — it includes a range of other skills and abilities, and the SHC offers you the chance to develop them. Whether it’s our Leadership Jumpstart course, the Alumni Mentoring Program, our internships at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., or the many programs and organizations we sponsor, you’ll have the opportunity to work with others and move forward as a leader. Your acquired leadership skills combined with our many exciting service-learning opportunities will enable you to benefit communities close to home and around the world.

Scholar with a young boy in Rwanda

The Schreyer Honors College has developed honors courses that include international travel as part of the curriculum. We have encouraged faculty to create innovative opportunities for students to apply what they’ve learned in locations around the planet. We have created a 12-credit globalization certificate for those interested in examining a specific region in-depth. We have partnered with the University of Freiburg in Germany to offer an exchange program that is as much about swapping ideas and perspectives as it is about changing places for a semester. And we offer funds to our Scholars to help; them land wherever their interests, studies, and passions lead.

Scholars in their Atherton Hall dorm room

Honors housing in Atherton and Simmons Halls makes up what we call a living-learning community. The buildings offer a convenient location, enhanced services, and superb facilities that include gracious common areas, convenient and well-equipped study areas, and state-of-the-art computing facilities. But it is what happens in the gathering spaces—the lobbies, the study lounges, the conference room, and the venerable Grandfather Clock Lounge—that create the community. Fireside chats with visiting alumni and special guests, book discussions, study groups, timely presentations on current events, and knock-off-some-steam fun make Atherton and Simmons Halls the place to be to live, learn, and grow.

Get To Know Schreyer