History and Mission
Since its founding nearly 30 years ago, Geneseo’s College Honors Program has enriched the undergraduate education of a select number of especially dedicated and accomplished students. The program seeks to enhance habits of critical thought and expression—skills equally vital to success in one’s career, one’s private life and one’s participation as a citizen in public life.
Named for its founder and longtime director, William J. Edgar, the Edgar Fellows Program offers specially designed seminar courses, research opportunities, close collaboration with program advisers and rich co-curricular activities.
Election to the Program
Application to the Edgar Fellows Program is by invitation only. Students are invited to apply based on evidence of excellent academic achievement and lively dedication to inquiry. Over the most recent five-year period, the average high school GPA of students entering the program is 97, the average SAT Verbal/Math Score is 1470 and the average ACT score is 31.
Edgar Fellows receive a $1000 per semester scholarship for non-tuition purposes renewable for up to eight semesters. To receive this award, you must be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum of 12-credits), in good academic standing, earn a minimum 3.0 GPA in each semester, and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.4.
All new students who join Geneseo as an Edgar Fellow are housed in Dante House, one of Geneseo’s Residential College Houses. Students assigned to Dante House are guaranteed not to live in a triple room. Programming within Dante House focuses on global service and citizenship. For more information, visit the Dante House page.
The Capstone Experience
The culminating experience for Edgar Fellows is the year-long Capstone Project. It may be a traditional honors thesis, but it can also be a project of the student’s own design—artistic, experimental, service. Students work throughout the year with a faculty mentor of the student’s choosing.
Recent Capstone Experiences:
- Modeling HPC Vaccination
- Hearing Saul through David
- Global Mamas: Gender Empowerment in Ghana
- Materiality in Accounting
- Yemen: Power, Discourse, and War
- Women in Jazz
(Over the most recent five-year period.)
Phi Beta Kappa
Approximately 67% of Edgar Fellows have been elected to Phi Beta Kappa, America’s oldest and most widely recognized collegiate honor society. Fewer than ten percent of America’s colleges and universities have a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.
The average GPA of students in the Edgar Fellows Program is 3.77.
Summa Cum Laude: 70%
Magna Cum Laude: 21.8%
Cum Laude: 15.3%
Total Edgar Fellows graduating with honors: 93.5%
Edgar Fellows Requirements
Students who join the Edgar Fellows Program as incoming first-year students will complete 22 credits of special HONR courses during their time at Geneseo. Many of these courses will allow students to satisfy portions of Geneseo’s General Education requirements in unique ways. Class sizes are very small and faculty are selected to teach in the Program on the basis of a proven track record of excellence in the classroom. For information on program requirements visit the Edgar Fellows Courses page.
Recent Course Examples
HONR 202: This Information Will Kill You: Misinformation, Disinformation, and Fake News
HONR 203: Parents vs. Zombies
HONR 204: Listening to Japanese Cinema
HONR 205: Discovering the Universe
HONR 206: Tyranny