Skip to main content

Honors Program

The MEAS Undergraduate Honors Program is a unique opportunity for students to challenge themselves academically, demonstrate their intellectual independence and an opportunity to work more closely with supportive, enthusiastic faculty on their research projects.

Students gather samples in the sound in front of the CMAST building

The MEAS Honors program offers additional academic challenges, intellectual independence and the opportunity to work more closely with supportive, enthusiastic faculty. The Honors experience may provide one of the best opportunities to develop the skills and abilities needed to envision and deal with the possibilities and problems of a period of ever accelerating change. Honors work teaches students to think more critically, to observe more carefully, and to develop skills of problem-solving analysis.

Admission & Requirements

Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.5 overall and a major GPA of at least 3.5, including required mathematics, chemistry and physics courses . Students are reviewed for eligibility after the first semester of the sophomore year, and again as first semester juniors. To complete the Honors program, students must graduate with an overall GPA of 3.4 or better. and complete a minimum of 9 hours of Honors work that includes 3 to 6 hours of independent study  (see below) and the remaining Honors credits earned in Honors sections of undergraduate courses, or advanced (500 –level) courses. Advising is done by the student’s academic faculty advisor.

Independent Study Opportunities

Students identify the research discipline/topic as well as the MEAS faculty they would like to work with for their independent study.  The completion of your research should culminate in a written report, and one of the following options: an oral presentation in the department, a poster presentation at the NCSU Undergraduate Research Symposium, or presentation at a professional meeting. Students may choose to fulfill their independent study requirement by registering for MEA 493, or by completing comparable work in other courses, subject to the approval of the Honors Director.  Feel free to contact the Honors Program Director to get started.

Honors Courses

Honors sections of certain regular MEA courses are offered on occasion. Other MEA courses may be offered as Faculty-Initiated Honors Option courses, allowing students to gain Honors credit in a regular class section. Honors courses may be taken outside of the department subject to the approval of the Honors Director.

Advanced Courses

Advanced courses are select 500-level courses offered to advanced undergraduates. Advance courses for Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Honors Students include all 500-level MEA courses, and advanced courses in other departments may be taken subject to the approval of the Honors Director.


Students who complete the Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Honors Program will be recognized by having an “H” beside their names in the Commencement program, the phrase “Completed Honors Program in Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences” on their permanent transcripts, and their names in the Honors Convocation program. Honors students will also be appropriately recognized at their departmental graduation ceremony.

Dr. Stuart Bishop
Program Director
4156 Jordan Hall