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Current Clarkson Students

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Every year the Honors Program accepts up to ten students from the current Clarkson University first year class, including Clarkson School students.  They enter the Honors Program in the fall semester of their sophomore year and begin the Honors curriculum with the Sophomore Problem Seminar (HP 200). 

The Honors Program may also accept "fast-track" applications from the Clarkson School for admission in the spring semester of the first year in which case they join the course on the The Social and Ethical Implications of Research II (HP101). Please note that "fast-track" admission is offered only to a small number of Clarkson School students in the spring semester of their first year at Clarkson.  Such students will be expected to have demonstrated outstanding academic potential and a genuine interest in the Honors Program at Clarkson University.

Acceptance into the Honors Program is contingent upon confirmation of final grades for the previous semester and a minimum GPA of 3.70. 


 The current student application deadline is February 22, 2016. 

The TCS Fast Track application deadline is November 13, 2015. 

The Application Process

A complete Honors Program application will include the following:

  • Honors Program application form
  • Essay
  • Résumé
  • Name and contact information of a Recommender

The Admissions Committee will review your materials and your academic record, and will usually contact your referee.  Select candidates will be invited to interview. Instructions for each component of the application are below.

Application Form

You must complete the online application and provide the information requested and let us know why you want to join the Honors Program (max. 250 words) and how you will contribute to the Honors Program (max. 250 words).  You will send your essay, resume and name of recommendor to  


Please write an essay of 500-1,000 words, on one of the following three topics:

Richard Dawkins, the evolutionary biologist, has suggested that "science is the poetry of reality."  Write an essay that elaborates on this idea based on your knowledge and personal experience in any of the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

 There is an increasing debate in the media about the value of higher education, both to society as a whole and to individual students.  What do you think?  In particular, why should society invest in your education and what do you hope to get out of it?

 Compare and contrast two examples of leadership that you have experienced.  Consider the situation and the leader(s) involved.  What factors do you think best explain the different outcomes and how does this influence your understanding of effective leadership?

Please submit a one-page résumé summarizing your relevant achievements to date.  Be sure to include the following sections:  heading with personal information (including your contact information-mailing address, email address, and a phone number where you can be reached), education, honors and awards, co-curricular activities (school activities), extra-curricular (outside of school), work and volunteer experience, and other activities (e.g. hobbies, interests, travel).  A sample is provided for your reference. 


Please provide us with the name and contact information (phone number and email address) of referee, preferably an instructor in one of your classes or an academic advisor at Clarkson.  We may follow up with your recommender in support of your application. 


Applicants will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee and candidates will be selected for an interview.  If you are a Clarkson School applicant you are required to have an Honors admissions interview. The Honors office will contact you to schedule your interview in either case.  In the interview we will cover the following topics with you:

  • Your recent high school experience
  • How you have learned from a personal experience or challenge you have faced
  • Your personal qualities and values
  • Your interests and activities
  • Your future plans and goals
  • Your passions and mission
  • Lateral thinking skills
  • Your reasons for joining the Honors program

Please submit your essay and résumé to  If you are sending it through the mail, address it to:

Jon Goss, Director
Honors Program
Clarkson University
PO Box 5755
Potsdam, NY 13699-5755