Drawer Trigger

Honors Program

Vanguard University launched its first Honors Program in fall 2019. Twenty incoming freshmen were accepted into the inaugural class during our 100-year anniversary 2019-2020 academic year and will pave the way for future Honors Program students. Fall 2020, twenty new incoming freshmen with exceptional academic profiles will be selected to study with top scholar and practitioner faculty during their four years at Vanguard University. This opportunity will provide Honors Program students with a transformational experience with expanded academic, leadership and service opportunities that will develop powerful world-changers. The Honors Program focuses on Scholarship, Leadership and Service.


Application Criteria:

  • All prospective Vanguard University freshmen with exceptional academic profiles are invited to apply to the Honors Program
  • Minimum 3.7 unweighted academic core GPA (Cal Grant GPA), top 10% class rank* and 1200 SAT (Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing combined)/25 ACT (Composite) required

Due to the competitive selection and interview process, it is anticipated students may have an academic profile of a 3.85 unweighted academic core GPA, top 5% class rank* and 1260 SAT/27 ACT.

*Students who attend a high school that does not rank are still eligible to apply.

Application Items and Deadline:

  • Standard application for admission with all supporting documents due by the December 1 Early Action Deadline.
  • Honors Program supplemental items due by December 1 to Undergraduate Admissions at admissions@vanguard.edu.
    • Honors Program essay
    • Letter of recommendation – must be on school letterhead and written by an academic course instructor (e.g. Math, Science, English, etc.)
  • If invited to interview, attendance is required and anticipated to be held Thursday, February 27, 2020
    • Attend Presidential Scholar Reception Wednesday, February 26, 2020 – the evening before interview. Overnight in residence hall. And, up to $250 airfare reimbursement will be provided to attendees who submit the $300 Enrollment Deposit by the National Candidates Reply Date of May 1.

Honors Program Essay Prompt:

Describe how one or more of your academic, community and/or church experiences demonstrate leadership and service in a diverse world. And, explain why you should be one of 20 students selected for the Honors Program and how you will make an impactful contribution.

Limit your typed response to 500 words. Essay will be evaluated on structure and content and be titled Honors Program Essay.

Scholarship Opportunities:

  • All students selected to participate in the Honors Program will receive an annual $2,000 Honors Program Scholarship added to their financial aid award in addition to their academic scholarship. Scholarship is renewable with continued participation in the Honors Program. Honors Program participation is limited to 4 years or 8 semesters.

Honors program curriculum:

Freshman Year – Challenging and Interactive

  • Freshman required Cornerstone CORE 100C (1 unit) taught by President Michael Beals with philosophy and ethics emphasis
  • Leadership course PLST 460 (1 unit)
  • Literary Perspectives ENGL 230C and World Civilization HIST 203C (one each semester fall/spring)

Sophomore-Senior Year – Additional Honors Courses and Experiences

  • Senior Capstone taught by Vice President for Academic Affairs/Provost
  • Experiential education component (12-16 units)
  • Research project
  • Introduction to Theology THEO 103C and Christian Heritage CHIS 400C in special section