Campus: CSU, Fresno -- April 17, 2001

Smittcamp Family Honors College Will Expand In Fall 2001

The Smittcamp Family Honors College at California State University, Fresno has been so successful since its inception in 1998 that it will grow by 50 percent next fall to admit 75 high-achieving entering freshmen with full scholarships.

The newest honors students were selected from more than 500 applications throughout California, said Dr. Stephen Rodemeyer, Honors College director.

"We have really spectacular students who are applying," he said, "and many of them are local, from Fresno, Madera and Tulare counties. It's exciting to see that we are drawing students from really good schools, whether small schools or large schools, public or private."

The Smittcamp Family Honors College is unique in the California State University system in that scholarship students are admitted as a group, take a series of specially designed honors courses and interact in educational and social activities.

Honors College applicants must score 1200 or above on the (P)SAT, be in the upper 10 percent of their graduating class or have a minimum GPA of 3.6 in college preparation classes.
Selected students receive a President's Honors Scholarship, which covers in-state registration fees, a $200 book allowance and full room rent for those who choose campus housing in a residence hall.

In addition, they receive priority registration and other campus privileges, enroll in several specially designed honors classes which have a 25-student limit and participate in a weekly colloquium with guest speakers and discussions.

Besides the obvious benefits to students, Rodemeyer said the entire campus benefits from the Honors College.

"The university benefits incredibly," he said. "The high-quality students who come attract more high-quality students, even if they're not part of the Honors College."
Also, Rodemeyer said, faculty members are more motivated when they have Honors students in their classes.

Smittcamp Family Honors students are required to volunteer 30 hours of community service in their first year and 20 hours in subsequent years. To remain in the program, a student must enroll in at least 12 units and earn a 3.0 GPA as a freshman, 3.25 as a sophomore and 3.4 as a junior.

The Smittcamp Family Honors College began in 1998 with a $1 million gift from Earl and Muriel Smittcamp and family, a prominent agribusiness family and longtime supporters of Fresno State.
For more information, call 278-8160.

(NOTE: Current Smittcamp Honors students will be recognized by President John D. Welty at the President's Scholars Annual Awards Dinner from 5:30-8:30 p.m. on Friday, April 27, in the Residence Dining Facility. Media coverage is invited. Contact Shirley Melikian Armbruster for arrangements.)

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