APPLYING TO HONORS
Thank you for your interest in the University Honors Program at Cal Poly. The program recruits first-time freshmen, first-time transfer students, and continuing Cal Poly students. Admission to the University Honors Program is highly competitive, and application materials are carefully reviewed. Please ensure that all requested applications materials are submitted before posted deadlines. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered under any circumstances. All application materials must be submitted electronically.
Incoming Freshmen Admission Requirements
To be considered for admission to the Honors Program, incoming freshmen applicants must satisfy the minimum high school grade point average (GPA) requirement noted below:
- Cumulative High School GPA (non-weighted) equal to at least 3.75
The Honors Program will review the SAT and/or ACT composite scores students submit in support of their Cal Poly application. There are no minimum score requirements for Honors Program applicants. In the past, successful applicants and Honors Program graduates have typically scored above 1300 on their SAT (pre-2017 scoring method - math plus critical reading score) and/or above 29 on their ACT (composite score).
Each year, a select number of conditionally admitted Cal Poly students are invited to submit an application to join the Honors Program. Invitations are typically sent in late February or early March. Applications are completed and submitted electronically and are typically due near the end of March. Submission instructions and specific deadlines are included in the email invitation and application.
A conditionally admitted student not formally invited to submit an application to the program may still apply by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. In the email student should include their full name, Cal Poly Empl. ID# and their major. Once the Honors Program office has verified student is eligible to apply an email will be generated and sent to the student. The email will include a link to the on-line application. Please note that it can take up to 24 hours for an email with application link to be sent to the prospective student. For additional questions qualified students should contact the Honors Program office for more information.
Each applicant must prepare a statement of purpose as well as responses to several essay prompts. Below are sample application essay questions:
- Why are you interested in joining the Honors community at Cal Poly?
- What will your participation in the program add to your education at Cal Poly?
- Tell us more about yourself. What are you passionate about?
- How might you use your passion to contribute or give back to the Cal Poly Honors community?
- During high school, what has been the most enriching activity you have participated in outside of the classroom?
- Briefly list and/or describe your most recent high school and community leadership activities and/or experiences.
Students accepted to the Honors Program must also be admitted to Cal Poly. Meeting the above minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the Honors Program. Students are selected for admission through a competitive application process.
Application Requests: CLOSED
Notification to students:
Questions about the application process: Please see our FAQ's page
Applications will open up after Cal Poly admission notification have been sent.
Incoming Upper-Division Transfer Requirements
To be considered for admission to the Honors Program, incoming upper-division transfer student applicants must have a cumulative higher education GPA of 3.50 or higher. Qualified students should contact the Honors Program office for more information on applying.
Transfer applicants must submit a statement of purpose and respond to several essay prompts (see sample questions above). Submission requirements are summarized on the application. Transfer students accepted to the Honors Program must also be admitted to Cal Poly. Meeting the above minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the Honors Program. Link to apply: Transfer Application Link
Application Requests: Open
Incoming Upper-Division Transfer Student questions email: email@example.com
Continuing Cal Poly Students Honors Program Requirements
Continuing Cal Poly students are encouraged to apply to the University Honors Program. The program considers applications from first- and second-year Cal Poly students. Applications from students in their third year at Cal Poly (or later) will not be considered.
First-year Cal Poly students may apply to the Honors Program only after grades are posted for their first quarter in residence. First-year applicants must have a cumulative Cal Poly GPA of 3.30 or higher to be considered for admission to the Honors Program.
Second-year Cal Poly students may apply to the Honors Program at any time prior to the completion of their sixth quarter in residence (excluding summer school enrollment). Second-year applicants must have a cumulative Cal Poly GPA of 3.40 or higher to be considered for admission to the Honors Program.
Continuing Cal Poly student applicants must complete on-line application and submit one letter of recommendation from a Cal Poly faculty member or instructor. Recommendation letters should be emailed by your Cal Poly faculty member or instructor to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Submission requirements are summarized on the application. Meeting the above minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the Honors Program.
Continuing Cal Poly Student Application: Open