At Gardner-Webb University, the University Honors Program is about far more than grades. It’s open-minded servant leadership. It’s courageous and creative academic inquiry. It’s a community of those who strive for the highest standards of social, spiritual, civic, and intellectual achievements.

Our comprehensive University Honors Program nurtures academically qualified students in all majors. The program emphasizes Honors classes, leadership through co-curricular and academic activities and accomplishments, preparation for graduate school, and special activities. 

As part of the University Honors Program, you will receive recognition during commencement exercises if you complete a minimum of 24 semester hours of Honors courses, participate in a minimum of 80 hours of community engagement, complete an approved Undergraduate Honors Thesis, and receive the recommendation of the Honors Faculty prior to graduation.


The mission of the Gardner-Webb University Honors Program is to nurture academically qualified students in all majors by providing a program of enriched learning experiences in courses taught by an Honors faculty and to instill community pride in its members by encouraging students to become active in service-based projects.


The University Honors Program seeks to provide academically qualified students of all majors with enriched learning opportunities and classes taught by Honors faculty in an engaging manner.

The University Honors Program holds its students to high standards, encourages them to become leaders academically and socially, and urges them to actively engage in service to the community and the University.  It strives to see students grow academically, culturally, spiritually, and socially.

To achieve this purpose, the Gardner-Webb University Honors Program seeks to provide and encourage opportunities for:

  • Student-centered learning in Honors core classes
  • Cultural enrichment
  • Student community engagement
  • Enhancing extra-curricular learning opportunities
  • Student research
  • Student involvement and participation in the activities of the North Carolina, Southern Regional and National Honors organizations

A Profile in Honors

At Gardner-Webb, an Honors Student can come from any background, study any major, and achieve remarkable things. But, there’s a certain type of person that thrives as part of this program:

  • They’ve typically scored above 600 on all sections of the SAT, ranked in the top 10% of their graduating class, and maintained a 3.5+ on a 4.0 unweighted GPA scale. 
  • They’re actively involved in both the school and local communities, often as leaders. They’re engaged in their church communities and in service to others. 
  • They experiment with topics outside their comfort zones and enjoy classes that are atypical in format or methodology. 
  • They’re creative, inquisitive, and courageous. And, they’re able to focus attention, suspend judgment, and bring joyful energy to every endeavor. 
  • They can be spontaneous, but they’re still self-aware, self-directed, and disciplined enough to meet the highest standards and expectations of their peers and instructors. 
  • Most of all, they’re not afraid to be uncomfortable, challenge ideas, ask bold questions, and seek deeper insights. 
  • A Gardner-Webb Honors Student is willing to work, willing to take risks, and willing to change as they challenge themselves to grow.

Admissions Requirements

To join the Gardner-Webb University Honors Program, applicants must:

  • Rank in the Top 10% of their Graduating Class
  • Have a cumulative 3.5+ on a 4.0 unweighted GPA scale
  • Have the right spirit and abilities to engage in the program’s challenges and opportunities
  • Submit an online application

Wilson L. Hawkins, Ph.D.

Director of the University Honors Program
Assistant Professor of Physics
Gardner-Webb University
P (704) 406-3804
[email protected]