As a junior and senior in the Keystone curriculum, you have the exciting opportunity to chart your own course through the design and completion of an original research project—the senior Honors Thesis. Working with Honors faculty and with a faculty adviser in your chosen discipline, you will move through a 5-hour course sequence, distributed across four semesters, that guides you through the thesis experience.
Each step in the Keystone curriculum provides you with knowledge, skills, and aptitudes that prepare you for successful completion of the thesis project and the achievement of Latin Distinction.
Application Information for Rising Juniors
Who can apply to the Honors College?
The Honors College offers an enriched and challenging educational experience for high-achieving, highly engaged students. The successful Honors College applicant typically has a 3.5 cumulative GPA on a minimum of 40 college credit hours. Students who feel that they embody the ideals of the College (intellectual curiosity, creativity, openness to new ideas, passion for learning, and drive) are encouraged to apply. We may seek additional materials should they be needed for full assessment of a candidate’s potential.
Current Honors students will transition to Keystone after completion of the Foundations curriculum. Current Southern Miss students and prospective transfer students who meet the minimum criteria are welcome to apply.* Please note that Honors Keystone admission does not entail specific scholarships. For information about Admissions-based scholarships for which you may qualify you, please visit the Southern Miss Scholarships and Financial Aid website.
* Minimum criteria: 3.25 cumulative GPA on 40 college credit hours and at least 4 semesters remaining prior to graduation. Only transcripts submitted to the University for general admission will be evaluated.Back to Top
What is the application process and what are the deadlines?
First, you must apply to the University of Southern Mississippi; the transcript you submit to Admissions will also be used for your Honors Keystone application. Click here to start your University application and here to start your Keystone application!
- November 1: Spring/Summer Application
- February 1: Fall Application (on-campus living); students who wish to receive priority dormitory assignments through Residence Life must apply by February 1.
- July 1: Fall Application (off-campus living)
Submit complete Keystone applications to:
Honors College • 118 College Drive #5162 • Hattiesburg, MS • 39406-0001
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org • Call (601) 266-4533
What do I need to submit as part of my application?
- Honors Keystone Application
- One letter of recommendation from a professor who has taught you in class*
- An essay or report (1,000-word minimum) that best demonstrates your writing abilities**
- Résumé, including all applicable honors and activities
- Academic transcript (The HC will request a copy from the Southern Miss Office of Admissions.)
* All letters should include official letterhead and the signature of the person recommending you.
** Writing is an important component of the Honors curriculum, as the ability to effectively communicate research is the backbone of Honors Keystone; thus your essay should demonstrate highly-tuned writing and editing skills, including proper spelling, grammar, punctuation and citation. To create an exceptional essay: self-edit on a character level, utilize a grammar/spelling tool, define all terms, and write in a manner that laypeople will understand. While the content of your essay is not restricted, a sample within your field of study will best represent your future works.Back to Top
How do I check my application status?
Honors Keystone applications are processed by the Honors College. An applicant with a complete application will receive the official decision within one month of the deadline. Honors College applicants must be generally accepted into The University of Southern Mississippi.
For questions regarding your status, e-mail email@example.com or call (601) 266-4533.Back to Top