Honors Program

The GMercyU Honors Program is an opportunity to join a circle of talented and motivated peers, change-makers, and networking connections. No matter what your major, the Honors Program will enrich your college experience, enhance your resume, boost your employability, and increase your chances of getting into graduate school.

Honors Program Mission

The Honors Program is dedicated to providing an academically rigorous and challenging curriculum, steeped in the liberal arts and sciences, to its brightest and most industrious students. The Program is committed to preserving an academic culture that inspires a genuine eros for learning.

The Honors Program Scholarship

A special full-tuition Honors Program Scholarship in the final semester of your senior year.

The Honors Program Scholarship is available to first-time, full-time Honors Program-eligible students who enroll in the Honors Program beginning in their first semester at GMercyU.

The scholarship will be added to any other scholarships and grants you have earned to bring your tuition costs down to $0 in the final semester of your senior year!

Eligibility requirements:

  • First-time, full-time Honors Program-eligible students who enroll in the Honors Program beginning in their first semester at GMercyU
  • Completion of at least 5 of the 6 required Honors Program courses by the end of first semester senior year; must be on track to complete all 6 courses by end of senior year
  • A cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 at the end of junior year
  • On track to graduate within 8 consecutive semesters (4 yrs) without any disciplinary actions

*The Honors Program Scholarship will not cover room and board or other fees, and it cannot be combined with the Presidential Scholarship. Students must report any financial aid received from private/external sources to the financial aid office. Institutional funding may be reduced when total gift aid (grants/scholarships/tuition benefits) from all sources exceeds standard tuition charges.

Benefits of the GMercyU Honors Program

  • An additional .25 added to your grade for each completed Honors course
  • Graduating with Honors Program distinction
  • Early class registration
  • Small seminar classes that emphasize interactive learning and critical thinking
  • Exclusive Honors Program cultural and social events, and occasions for informal gatherings with Honors faculty
  • Individualized mentoring from Honors Program faculty
  • A special reception with GMercyU's President
  • An opportunity to participate in the Griffin Student Leadership Institute
  • Special living/learning on-campus housing
  • Immersion in a challenging, classical liberal arts education that allows students and professors to engage in conversation and discovery
  • Enhanced eligibility for graduate study and employment
  • Connections with a cross-section of students from various academic majors
  • Incoming first-year, full-time students invited to join the Honors program are eligible for the Honors Program Scholarship (see above) and are also typically awarded an $18,000-$19,000 McAuley Scholarship.


In the Honors program, I was able to learn from professors who I might not have interacted with otherwise. [They] will make time for you even if you’re not in one of their classes. If you’re excited, they’re excited. 

— Andreana Ely '17 

Qualifying for the Honors Program

Enrollment in the Honors Program is by invitation and is based on the following criteria:

First Year and Transfer Students

  • 3.5 GPA or higher
  • 1170 combined SAT scores or ACT equivalent*

*GMercyU will not require students to submit standardized test scores. In lieu of SAT or ACT scores, you may submit either a recommendation letter from a teacher OR a writing sample — a paper or essay you’ve already written for a high school assignment that represents your best work. Please submit your teacher recommendation to:

Office of Admissions
Gwynedd Mercy University
1325 Sumneytown Pike
P.O. Box 901
Gwynedd Valley, PA 19437

Alternatively, you can submit a paper or essay electronically to the Admissions Office at admissions@atmkgreen.com.

Current Students

  • 3.5 cumulative GPA
  • One letter of recommendation from faculty
  • Interview with Honors Program Director

If you do not meet all the above criteria, you may still be admitted to the program at the discretion of the Honors Program Director.

Completion Requirements

Once you’re admitted to the Honors Program, you will complete six courses. If you achieve a 3.0 GPA in your Honors courses and a 3.33 overall GPA in your undergraduate degree program, you will be recognized at the Honors Convocation before commencement, and your transcript and diploma will reflect that you graduated from the Honors Program.

Since all Honors Program courses satisfy the University's General Education requirements, except for Signature Seminars, you won’t need to take any additional courses to graduate, and you will receive both General Education and Honors credit.

My favorite honors class [so far] has been Mysticism and Transcendence. The course was challenging and thought-provoking as it revealed the changing of our beliefs as time passed. 

— Abigail Kennedy '21, Criminal Justice major


Honors Program Courses

Students in the Honors Program take six courses in these artes liberales:


  • Dialectic: philosophy, religious studies, history
  • Rhetoric: English, political science, communication, history, philosophy
  • Grammar: English, communication, history, religious studies, philosophy

  • Music: music, drama, art history, English, communication, philosophy, history, religious studies
  • Mathematics
  • Astronomy: interpreted as physical and social sciences

In the courses above, you will dive deeply into the subject matter through conversation-based learning with your professors.

As you explore the history and heritage of western civilization, you will sharpen your communication skills, both verbal and written. You will learn to think critically, but also with nuance and sophistication. You will develop a global awareness, an understanding of human freedom and responsibility to the community, and a sense of humanity’s spiritual, ethical, and moral heritage.

The complexity of the course material and the rigors of the Program will help solidify your confidence in your ability to learn and help prepare you to become adaptable within your future career.

[Dr. Messina] is one of the most brilliant minds I have ever had the pleasure of speaking with, and he has also been one of the greatest mentors to me in my life. His impact on me extends far beyond the classroom, where he did impact me greatly, but also the way I have come to view certain things about the world around us. My gratitude for Dr. Messina is ineffable. 

— Austin Lescanec '18 


Contact Us

For additional information on the GMercyU Honors Program, please contact Admissions at admissions@atmkgreen.com or contact the program director:

Dr. Patrick Messina
Director, Honors Program
Associate Professor of Philosophy
Gwynedd Mercy University
1325 Sumneytown Pike
Gwynedd Valley, PA 19437
215-646-7300, ext. 21198