A Vibrant Academic Community

You will find information about the opportunities we have available to ambitious, academically gifted students.  The Honors Program offers specialized courses and independent study that will prepare you for graduate study.

The focal point of Marywood University's Honors Curriculum is the honors degree.The focal point of Marywood University's Honors Curriculum is the honors degree.

Since 1983, The Honors Program at Marywood University has offered enriched educational opportunities for talented and motivated students.

In 1992, the Office of Honors and Fellowships was established, and the Honors Program was expanded to offer students more support and resources, not only for their academic careers at Marywood, but also to help them fulfill their goals of graduate or professional school. Today, the office serves as the core of Marywood's Honors community.

The Honors Program offers you the unique opportunity to engage in a vibrant academic community. Involvement in the program provides you with challenging courses in a variety of disciplines as well as in-depth studies within your chosen field. You will practice critical thinking skills, learn and apply various research methods, and create new knowledge within your field of study. You will also gain professional experience through participation in conferences, research forums, and exhibitions. The benefits of the Honors Program extend beyond your undergraduate careers, providing you with the skills necessary for post-baccalaureate success as well as preparing you to apply for graduate school and competitive scholarships and fellowships.

The Honors Program supports your scholarship by offering

  • Honors seminars and independent study.
  • Funding for research and travel to regional and national conferences.
  • Opportunities to study abroad.
  • Advising for students applying to graduate or professional schools.
  • Advising for students competing for major national or international scholarships and fellowships.

The Honors Advisory Board works to fulfill the mission of Marywood University by

  • Creating a stronger sense of excellence in scholarship.
  • Providing greater incentives for faculty and students to take a leading role in the academic community through innovations in learning.
  • Establishing a community of faculty and students based on a love of learning, creative intellectual engagement, and commitment to academic excellence.
  • Providing a rigorous academic environment that contributes to the overall university community and encourages student dedication and achievement.

Marywood is a member of both the National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) and the Northeast Region Collegiate Honors Council. The Office of Honors and Fellowships houses resources on the honors curriculum and courses, information about study abroad programs, undergraduate research opportunities, graduate and professional schools, and scholarships and fellowships. We sponsor special activities and events.

Contact Dr. Adam Shprintzen, Director of Honors and Fellowships, via email at shprintzen@marywood.edu, or phone 570-348-6211, ext. 2358 for more information or to make an appointment.

Students who complete the honors degree will receive the Citation in Honors and recognition on their official transcripts. To graduate with the Citation in Honors, students must:

  1. Complete a minimum of 21 honors credits.
    • 4 honors seminar courses that meet core curriculum or liberal arts requirements
    • 2 honors courses in the student’s major
    • 1 honors course elective OR a third course in the student’s major
  2. Complete a 3-credit honors thesis in their major.
  3. Achieve a 3.5 QPA by the semester preceding graduation

Honors Curriculum

We’ve designed honors coursework to enhance the core curriculum experience of academically motivated students. These small, seminar-style classes emphasize active learning, including participation, discussion, and research skills and methods.

View Catalog Curriculum 

In addition to these courses, new honors courses and opportunities are created and added on a regular basis. Most honors courses fulfill core requirements; other courses are offered as electives that can be used exclusively to fulfill honors requirements.

If you have already taken the courses that are offered or if you need a course in your major, you may opt to take Honors Enrichment Courses in order to complete your honors requirements. For Honors Enrichment, you would work with the professor of a course to define a more rigorous course of study that reflects Honors requirements, and then submit an Honors Enrichment Contract to the department chair and Director of Honors and Fellowships for approval.

The Honors Thesis is the capstone of the Honors Program at Marywood University. The thesis is a scholarly paper in your discipline that is treated as independent study worth 3 credits. You work with a committee made up of a faculty director, a reader, and the honors program director over the course of 2 semesters to complete the research and writing requirements. 

The thesis provides the opportunity for you to tailor your interests and develop your expertise in a specific subject area. Such skills also give you a competitive advantage on scholarship or graduate school applications. Theses are published every year in Scientia.   

The Journal of the Honors Program at Marywood University

Scientia is published annually to honor the achievements of students who have completed the requirements of the program and are graduating with the Citation in Honors.

The Honors Program at Marywood University provides you with opportunities to expand on the traditional curriculum and work closely with faculty, all of which culminates in the Honors thesis. The Honors thesis reflects the essence of a Marywood University education and the best of honors learning: a blending of the liberal arts and major programs, close collaboration between students and faculty, and advancement of study in the form of research. 

Scientia is distributed on campus and catalogued in the Marywood University Library.

Program Testimonials

“[Thesis process] has been an incredibly fulfilling experience that challenged me to do more than I thought I could and allowed me to see not only my topic but also myself from a new perspective.”

—Ann Brennan, English

Funding for Undergraduate Research and Travel

Marywood also offers funding for undergraduate student research and travel. Students have participated in ongoing research projects on campus, and presented at conferences and conventions from Boston to Seattle, and even Edinburgh, Scotland.

Scholarships & Fellowships

The following information can help Marywood University students who may be considering applying for one or more nationally recognized awards such as the Rhodes, Fulbright and Marshall Fellowships.

All of the fellowships listed here require extensive preparation before you will be able to submit an application. For this reason, you should research application procedures far in advance of the application deadlines. Each fellowship has a faculty mentor listed whom you should consult for more information.

For advice finding scholarships for all academic levels, see the Scholarship Search Finder on "Finding and Applying for Scholarships" at the US Department of Education website.

Boren Awards

Boren Scholarships and Fellowships provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to add an important international and language component to their educations. We focus on geographic areas, languages, and fields of study that are critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad.

Advisor: Dr. Ann Cerminaro-Constanzi acostanzi@marywood.edu

The Corcoran Scholarship

The Corcoran Scholarship is sponsored by the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick of Lackawanna County.  It provides $5000 to a qualified student to study in Ireland or Northern Ireland.  This scholarship is available every other year.  News regarding the scholarship's availability will be announced via email to the campus community.

Advisor: Dr. Erin Sadlack easadlack@marywood.edu

Fulbright Program

Sponsored by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Fulbright Program provides funding for students, scholars, teachers, and professionals to undertake graduate study, advanced research, university teaching, and teaching in elementary and secondary schools. The flagship international educational program sponsored by the U.S. Government, the Fulbright Program is designed to increase mutual understanding between the peoples of the United States and the people other countries.

Advisor: Dr. Samantha Christiansen christiansen@marywood.edu

Gilman Scholarships

The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program offers grants for U.S. citizen undergraduate students of limited financial means to pursue academic studies abroad. Such international study is intended to better prepare U.S. students to assume significant roles in an increasingly global economy and interdependent world.

Advisor: Dr. Alexandru Vari vari@marywood.edu

The Marshall Scholarship

Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom. Up to forty Scholars are selected each year to study at graduate level at an UK institution in any field of study.

As future leaders, with a lasting understanding of British society, Marshall Scholars strengthen the enduring relationship between the British and American peoples, their governments and their institutions. Marshall Scholars are talented, independent and wide-ranging, and their time as Scholars enhances their intellectual and personal growth. Their direct engagement with Britain through its best academic programmes contributes to their ultimate personal success.

Advisor: Dr. Joseph Polizzi japolizzi@marywood.edu

The Rhodes Scholarship

The Rhodes Scholarships were established after the death of Cecil Rhodes, who dreamed of improving the world through the diffusion of leaders motivated to serve their contemporaries, trained in the contemplative life of the mind, and broadened by their acquaintance with one another and by their exposure to cultures different from their own. Mr. Rhodes hoped that his plan of bringing able students from throughout the English-speaking world and beyond to study at Oxford University would aid in the promotion of international understanding and peace. Each year, 32 U. S. citizens are among more than 80 Rhodes Scholars worldwide who take up degree courses at Oxford University.

Advisor: Dr. Joseph Polizzi japolizzi@marywood.edu

Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarships

The purpose of the Ambassadorial Scholarships program is to further international understanding and friendly relations among people of different countries and geographical areas.The program sponsors several types of scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students as well as for qualified professionals pursuing vocational studies. While abroad, scholars serve as goodwill ambassadors to the host country and give presentations about their homelands to Rotary clubs and other groups. Upon returning home, scholars share with Rotarians and others the experiences that led to a greater understanding of their host country.

Advisor: Dr. Ann Cerminaro-Constanzi acostanzi@marywood.edu

Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation's scholarship programs are designed to encourage and support outstanding students who work hard, demonstrate a strong will to succeed, and have financial need. Our scholarships provide financial assistance and academic support to high school, undergraduate, and graduate students.

Advisor: Dr. Helen Bittel bittel@marywood.edu

Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship

The purpose of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, as stated in the enabling legislation, is to alleviate a critical current and future shortage of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians, and engineers. A more realistic statement of the purpose, in today's terms, is to provide a continuing source of highly qualified individuals to those fields of academic study and research.

Advisor: Dr. Michael Kiel mkiel@marywood.edu

James Madison Graduate Fellowship 

The James Madison Fellowships were created to honor Madison's legacy and Madisonian principles by providing support for graduate study that focuses on the Constitution--its history and contemporary relevance to the practices and policies of democratic government. The benefits of the fellowship program are manifold and lasting. Fellowship recipients have a unique opportunity to strengthen their research, writing, and analytical skills. In the process they form professional ties that can significantly influence their career aspirations. Fellows gain a deeper understanding of the principles of constitutional government which they in turn transmit to their students. In this way the James Madison Fellowships ensure that the spirit and practical wisdom of the Constitution will guide the actions of future generations of American citizens.

Advisor: Dr. Brian Monahan monahan@marywood.edu

Harry S. Truman Scholarship

The mission of the Truman Scholarship Foundation is to find and recognize college juniors with exceptional leadership potential who are committed to careers in government, the nonprofit or advocacy sectors, education or elsewhere in the public service; and to provide them with financial support for graduate study, leadership training, and fellowship with other students who are committed to making a difference through public service.

Advisor: Dr. Brian Monahan monahan@marywood.edu

Morris K. Udall Scholarship

The Udall Foundation seeks future leaders across a wide spectrum of environmental fields, including policy, engineering, science, education, urban planning and renewal, business, health, justice, and economics. The Foundation also seeks future Native American and Alaska Native leaders in public and community health care, tribal government, and public policy affecting Native American communities, including land and resource management, economic development, and education.

Advisor: Dr. Jay P. Clymer clymer@marywood.edu

National Institutes of Health Undergraduate Scholarship Program

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Undergraduate Scholarship Program (UGSP) offers competitive scholarships to students from disadvantaged backgrounds that are committed to careers in biomedical, behavioral, and social science health-related research. The program offers scholarship support, paid research training during the summer, and paid employment and training at NIH after graduation.

Advisor: Dr. Deborah Hokien hokien@marywood.edu

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program

The National Science Foundation's Graduate Research Fellowship Program helps ensure the vitality of the human resource base of science and engineering in the United States and reinforces its diversity. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees in the U.S. and abroad.

Pre-Med Advisor - Dr. Lisa Antoniacci

Pre-Law Advisor - Dr. Kathleen Munley

Advisor: Dr. Michael Kiel mkiel@marywood.edu

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) program provides opportunities for students to spend the summer living in a foreign country and studying one of the following languages:

  • Arabic
  • Azerbaijani
  • Bangla
  • Chinese
  • Hindi
  • Indonesian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Persian
  • Punjabi
  • Russian
  • Turkish
  • Urdu


The CLS program is open to U.S. citizens who are enrolled in a degree-granting program at either the undergraduate or graduate level. Students in all disciplines and majors are encouraged to apply.


Critical Language Scholarships cover the cost of:

  • Tuition
  • Room and board
  • Round-trip air travel
  • Visa fees
  • Health insurance
  • Living stipend

Learn more about the CLS program