Better Because of Illinois
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  • #6 highest income potential from a Midwestern institution; the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign was the only public school on the list
  • Top 15 Public University in the country US News & World Report

“Without the Business Honors Program, I would not be where I am today. In fact, I probably would still be in Southern California if not for Business Honors. The program has given me so much support and so many opportunities. I landed two of my on-campus jobs because of Business Honors, and I know that no matter what, I have a group of friends, tried and true.”

Cynthia Wang
Palos Verdes Estates, CA
BS Marketing and General Management; 2014

Business Honors Program

The College of Business Honors Program is focused on developing leaders who will bring energy, optimism, and enthusiasm to the business world.

At the end of their freshmen year, each class takes an international trip to learn more about the increasingly global business world. In May 2013, the Honors Class of 2016 visited China. The Honors Class of 2017 will be heading to Singapore and Thailand in May 2014.


Learning to develop and nurture a diverse network of colleagues upon whom you can rely for advice, support, and encouragement throughout your business career is an essential leadership skill. The Honors Program in the College of Business is designed to develop high-potential students into strong business leaders who not only excel intellectually, but also understand that with success comes responsibility to serve their communities, their alma mater, and each other. The Honors Program for the College of Business should benefit all undergraduates and not just the students in the honors cohort.

The heart of the Honors Program is the group of students selected to be College of Business Honors Program students. Those students will work with the Assistant Dean for Honors to develop the leadership skills that will be used to encourage all business undergraduates to participate fully in honors activities and to utilize the resources of the College of Business to prepare for professional careers. Students identified for the Honors Program should demonstrate qualities that put them in the top rank of the college. Such qualities may include leadership, intellectual talent, community service, etc. Most of the activities for the honors cohort will be concentrated in the students' freshman and sophomore years. Juniors and seniors in the Honors Program will participate in leadership teams that will work with faculty and administrators of the College of Business and the University of Illinois to encourage broader participation in programs that better prepare students for their professional futures. The framework of the Honors Program for juniors and seniors will recognize the commitment to major that is required of these students.

The Honors Program provides significant experiences for the Honors Program students and expects the students to make the College of Business a better place by using the skills learned from those experiences to be undergraduate leaders of the college. Advantages of membership in the Honors Program include:

  • A 4-year, renewable merit scholarship.
  • A seminar series, “Conversation with Leaders,” for honors students with national and international business leaders.
  • A mentorship program based on the idea of “mentoring chain reaction” to teach students to rely on each other for support and council and begin to develop a life-long network of business contacts.
  • Representing the College of Business a Business Student Ambassador.
  • An international experience, largely funded by the College of Business, at the end of the freshman year. Students are expected to pay $1,000 of the nearly $4,000 cost. Financial aid is available for students with significant demonstrated need. In 2014, the students will be visiting Singapore and Thailand.
  • A job shadow program during winter break of freshman year.
  • Social activities for honors students.
  • The Assistant Dean for Honors serves as an advisor for honors students.

Honors Program Admission Timeline

The Honors cohort will be selected based on multiple criteria. In addition to academic achievement, candidates will be evaluated on their leadership skills, social diversity, creativity, community service activities, critical thinking and problem solving skills. All students who have been admitted to the College of Business are automatically considered for the College of Business Honors Program using the admissions application as the application for honors. A group of students will be selected for interviews conducted by alumni of the College of Business. After the interviews, the admissions committee will make recommendation to the Assistant Dean for Honors Programs for final selections. Students who have been interviewed for the College of Business Honors Program will be notified of the results in early March.

Contact Us

If you have any questions regarding the Honors Program, then please reach out to the Assistant Dean for Honors Programs, Rich Johnson.