Honors Program

How to Apply to Honors: Get Ready


Before applying, read the Prospective Students section, and look through the Current Students section to ensure that you understand both the benefits as well as the requirements of Tech Honors.

First-year applicants to the Honors Program should use the form below. The application for transfer or continuing Tech students is posted under Transfer and Continuing Students.  
  • Use this form even if you have earned college credits while still in high school. (Full-time college students should use the application for Continuing and Transfer Students, which will be posted in mid-October on the webpage for that cohort.)
  • The application for admission to Honors must be completed solely by the student. 
  • Minimum requirements: 3.5 High school GPA. This threshold does not guarantee admission; applications are reviewed holistically. ACT and SAT scores are not required for your Honors application.
  • Misrepresentation of any information will result in the student's disqualification from admission.
  • Use of AI or other forms of assistance or plagiarism are forbidden.
  • Applications must be complete in order to be eligible for review.
  • Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until reaching capacity, but no later than the beginning of the term for which the applicant is applying.
1. CHECK HERE to indicate that you have read and agree to the terms above.
The experiences you describe do not need to be about your formal education! *Examples: you could choose a certain “aha!” moment in your life, or a formative encounter, a first-time event, or another kind of singular experience that was most impactful for you individually.

13-14. Essay Questions:

Use the spaces provided below to write any TWO essays chosen from the list of topics below.

  • You may submit only two essays. Additional entries will not be considered.
  • Each essay should be 250-300 words in length.
  • Avoid clichés and repetition.
  • We want to know specifically about you and your actual interests, not a list of accomplishments.
  • Choose the two topics that best allow you to express different perspectives on your experiences and ideas, so that we understand more about you from each essay. 
  • Do not provide dictionary definitions.
  • Use details to support what you say.
  • At the beginning of each essay, write the letter corresponding to your topic choice.

Topic Choices

a. Elaborate on one of your answers for question #12 that, in your mind, best demonstrates your unique experiences and identity as a learner and thinker. Include an explanation of why it stands out in contrast to your other three answers.

b.Think about some of your academic interests that are not related to your chosen major. Write about the one that is both very different from your future major, while also being a deeply intriguing to you. Describe an experience or two that reflects how this interest has influenced you, and what you might hope to do with it during your college years.

c. Describe a situation in which you learned something complex on your own in a non-academic setting, and then applied that knowledge or learning experience to an unrelated, completely different classroom setting. 

d. If you consider yourself a creative thinker, why? Give details of how you approached something creatively, including one or two examples. Make sure you explain its implications for you. Do not define creativity; focus on what makes you consider your example(s) important in your own way of thinking or living.

e. If (and only if) you plan to use your future career to address a specific change--a change NOT generally associated with your future major or career path as a whole: What are some of the ways that you would like to use Honors to prepare more deeply for that path? 

f. If (and only if) community engagement is an integral part of your life but not part of your major field of study, in what way could you realistically make a sustainable effort to develop your approach  during college besides volunteering hours or recruiting others (although of course, they are important too!): Is there a way you'd like to innovate to keep efforts going after you graduate?

g. Write about a complex friendship you’ve had. What did it help you learn about yourself and the ways you interact? In what way(s) have you applied it to other experiences? Be careful not to resort to clichés.

h. What is the most difficult yet productive discussion you have had with someone who was not a friend? (Do not use the same individual you wrote about for topic 7 above.) Evaluate what you learned, as well as what occurred in the discussion.

i. Have you had an unusual experience as a leader or team member? What did that unusual experience teach you about leadership, and what does it change about the way you view leadership?

j. If you feel that the essay choices listed do not let you express the most important aspects of your qualifications to be an Honors scholar, choose one of your strengths or interests that you believe best reflects those qualifications. Explain its significance for you: why does it show your best qualifications? Give some examples to illustrate its importance for you.

Don't forget: Start each essay by writing down the right letter--so we know which topic you are choosing.

16. I verify that the writing and statements in this application are entirely my own. I understand that misrepresentation will result in disqualification of my application to Honors. I have checked my work for completion; incomplete applications will not be reviewed. 


Please note:  If you wish to be considered for any scholarships and other forms of financial aid, see the Tennessee Tech Office of Financial Aid and complete financial aid materials by December 15. 

If you'd like to schedule a visit:  Go to Visit Tennessee Tech (tntech.edu).  Click on the yellow "Schedule Now!" button. Indicate the you want to visit with an Honors Ambassador as part of your campus tour.  Dedicated and trained Honors students contribute their hard-earned free time to meet with students and parents. Please schedule and confirm a meeting well in advance. The commitment of time and energy by Tech Honors Student Ambassadors reflects their commitment to you, as well as their enthusiasm for Honors!

After receiving notification that you are admitted to Honors:

  1. If you would like to live in the Honors Residence Hall (Murphy Hall):

    • You must use Residential Life's Online Application Process for campus residence halls.
    • Spots fill up fast, so applying for on-campus housing early and selecting Murphy (the Honors hall) as your first choice after Honors admission will greatly increase your chance of getting a spot--Honors Housing is a popular choice.
    • For more information, see the Honors Housing webpage.

2. Apply to be matched with an Honors Big Sib here. Murphy_Narnia Having a reliable current Honors student who shares your own interests and preferences, and who is  there for you when you need them most, can make all the difference in your transition to college life as an Honors student.

3. If you are an out-of-state/international student who wishes to apply for the HAS, you must apply for the HAS on Tech's ScholarWeb page in addition to applying for admission to the Honors Program.  The HAS is a competitive, limited funding opportunity that does not guarantee an award.

4. When you come to SOAR:

If you've been notified of acceptance to the Honors Program, be sure to attend all Honors sessions to fully complete the admission process. They will be listed on your SOAR itinerary.