Undergraduate Honors Opportunities

College Scholars Program

The UC Santa Cruz College Scholars Program offers a congenial and stimulating academic home for a select group of well-prepared students at UC Santa Cruz. College Scholars can expect to challenge themselves academically, find other students who are similarly motivated, and explore undergraduate research. This enriched program of study includes special courses, seminars, colloquia, and other events during each quarter of the academic year. College Scholars participate in demanding, small-scale, and research-oriented courses that catalyze creative thinking and offer a springboard to other undergraduate research opportunities.

Admission to the Fall Start cohort of the College Scholars Program is by invitation. A select group of UCSC applicants offered admission to the university will be invited to join the program, based on their record of academic achievement. Students can also apply for the College Scholars Program after the fall of their first year ("Spring Start"). In this case, students will join the program during the spring research colloquium. Spring Start students are selected based on applications submitted through their college.

Honor Societies

Many UC Santa Cruz students are members of departmental, professional, local, and national honor societies whose goals are to recognize and improve scholastic standing in an area of interest. Among these are Phi Beta Kappa, the oldest national society that advances scholarship and recognizes excellence in the liberal arts and sciences; Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honor society that recognizes students of distinguished scholarship, exemplary character, and dedication to service; the Golden Key International Honour Society, which provides recognition and leadership opportunities to top-performing students; and Psi Chi, which encourages, stimulates, and maintains excellence in scholarship, and advances the science of psychology.

Awards and Scholarships

UC Santa Cruz has a variety of scholarship and award opportunities that are designed to reward, encourage, and assist students in pursuing academic excellence and leadership roles. Students can find such opportunities through their colleges, departments, divisions, and various external agencies.

UCSC provides support for students for a variety of prestigious scholarships and awards such as the Karl S. Pister Leadership Opportunity Award, Deans’ and Chancellor’s Awards, Steck Foundation Award, Boren Scholarship, Donald A. Strauss Scholarship, Fulbright U.S. Student Program, Scholarship, Marshall Scholarship, and Rhodes Scholarship.