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Muriel A. Howard Honors Scholarship Program


Established in 1984, the Muriel A. Howard Honors Program currently enrolls 200 plus students. Those who enroll understand that although they are expected to work hard, they are rewarded with opportunities for applied internships, scholarships, research, and bright futures.

Two categories of students are eligible for consideration for the program: first-time college students and transfer students.


High school students admitted to the program complete seven classes specifically designed for honors students. In addition, students earn honors credit in classes throughout all disciplines at the college.

Second-semester Buffalo State students entering the program must take five honors classes.

Community college graduates who have completed an honors program must complete three honors classes at Buffalo State. Other transfer students may have different requirements, depending on their needs.

Honors coursework fulfills general education/Intellectual Foundations requirements for graduation and is not "extra" credit.

Students must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 at all times to continue receiving the scholarship.


  • Scholarships and access to national awards
  • Priority registration for classes
  • Special academic advisement
  • Unique seminars and classes on current events, leadership skills, and career development
  • Newly refurbished state-of-the-art residence hall (for resident honors students)
  • Honors lounge and study rooms including computers, WiFi access, and free printing
  • Activities such as trips, visits with lecturers or public figures, and social gatherings with faculty members
  • Passes for arts, cultural, and sporting events
  • Recognition of honors program completion on diploma, transcripts, and at Commencement

Financial benefits

Honors Classes

Honors classes are offered during the fall and spring semesters. Students are not required to take courses sequentially, but they are strongly encouraged to take at least two honors classes each semester.

First-year students must take HON 100: Muriel A. Howard Honors Seminar during their first semester as honors students. All courses are offered every semester except HON 100 (offered fall only) and HON 400 (offered spring only), which are required electives. Students should take HON 400 in their sixth semester.

The remaining honors seminars are Intellectual Foundations (general education) classes that fulfill requirements for graduation. Students should check the college's official course listings for specific details.

Honors Courses

HON 100 Muriel A. Howard Honors Seminar

HON 101 Humanities Seminar

HON 102 Natural Science Seminar

HON 103 Arts Seminar

HON 202 Social Science Seminar

HON 309 Western Ideals of Excellence 

HON 400 Muriel A. Howard Honors Colloquium
(Culminating activity. Students complete original works of research and creativity.)

Muriel Howard headshot

About Muriel A. Howard

Muriel A. Howard served as the seventh president of Buffalo State, from 1996 to 2009. The college’s first female president, she was integral to the growth of the honors program. In 1998, she established the Foundation Scholarship Gala, which has since raised more than $3 million in scholarship funds for honors students.

In 2009, Howard left Buffalo State to accept her current position as president of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), a Washington, D.C.–headquartered association representing 430 public colleges and universities advocating for public higher education.

Honors Lounge

Honors Residence Hall and Lounge

Bishop Hall is undergoing a dramatic $16.1 million conversion from an office building to a state-of-the-art residence hall that will house Honors Program students. Bishop is in the heart of campus next to the Campbell Student Union. Double occupancy rooms provide furnishings and finishes ideal for studying and connecting with other students. Each floor has privacy baths, study rooms, lounge and laundry and students have access to free WiFi and free printing. The lower level of Bishop includes multipurpose and gaming rooms as well as a classroom for honors classes, activities, seminars, and movies. Living in Honors housing is optional. Space is limited, and rooms are assigned as requests are received, so please make your reservation early! 


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Honors Programs

1300 Elmwood Ave  •  Twin Rise 100D •  Buffalo, NY 14222
Phone: (716) 878-3093