The University of Southern Mississippi offered its first Honors classes in 1965. By 1976, the program had evolved into a formalized Honors College, making it the sixth oldest public honors college in the nation and the oldest Honors College in the state of Mississippi.
Appropriate to its historic role at the university, the home of the Honors College is the Honor House, one of the original buildings on the Southern Miss campus. Built in 1912, the Honor House was given its current name when it was a dormitory for women who were put “on their honor” to respect curfew and other campus policies.
Today, the Honors College is composed of more than 500 curious, imaginative, and aspiring scholars who strive for excellence, thrive on academic challenge, and serve and lead both on campus and in the community.
The Honors College at the University of Southern Mississippi fosters a deep, communal engagement with ideas and an atmosphere of personal connection and achievement by providing students with small classes, opportunities for active learning, and research experiences.
We create a supportive and challenging intellectual community, promote attentive mentoring, and expose our students to cutting-edge scholars and artists. Above all, we encourage our students to seize opportunities and boldly determine their own paths—both at the university and beyond.
Upon graduation, our students will have the independence and confidence to pursue their passions, the knowledge and tools with which to chart a fulfilling future course, and a lifelong commitment to using their capacities for the public good.
We expect all Honors College Scholars to recognize and take seriously the many implications of “honor.” We hold Honors Scholars to high standards not only with regard to academic performance and integrity, but also with regard to civility and tolerance. We value the diversity of the Southern Miss campus and expect our students to respect one another and honor and learn from differing viewpoints, cultural experiences, faith systems, and interests.
Upon accepting admission into the College, all Scholars are governed not only by the Southern Miss Academic Integrity Policy but also by the Honors College Code, which reflects our mission and our fundamental commitment to rigorous standards of excellence.
I commit myself to serve as a leader and role model in the university community, maintaining high standards of academic integrity, personal conduct, and campus citizenship.
I understand that my actions reflect not only upon me, but also upon my fellow Honors Scholars, the Honors College, and the University of Southern Mississippi.
I will be a committed class member, submit timely, original assignments and exert a sustained effort to succeed in my academic work and I will work to be an exemplary campus citizen.
It is my responsibility to uphold this code and to encourage others in their efforts to do so.