Honors in the Major provides students with exciting opportunities to explore their major discipline in depth, beyond their capstone work, by completing a substantial research or creative project. As their project goes through several stages—from preliminary idea to multiple drafts and onto the final result—they develop as thoughtful, steadfast scholars and artists. They demonstrate their capacity to think and work independently on an advanced level. Moreover, they benefit from a close, working relationship with their supervising faculty, from whom they can gain an even deeper understanding of their field. For all of these reasons, Honors in the Major advances a student’s preparation for graduate work.
To qualify for Honors in the Major, a student must have completed at least 75 credits at MMC.
The receipt of Honors in the Major is noted on the student’s transcript and in the Commencement Bulletin.
Honors in the Major is entirely independent of the College Honors Program. It is also distinct from Latin Honors, which are awarded at graduation on the basis of a student’s overall GPA: cum laude (GPA 3.50-3.69), magna cum laude (GPA 3.70-3.89), or summa cum laude (GPA 3.90-4.0).
Marymount Manhattan College offers students the opportunity to complete Honors in a variety of majors.
Students majoring in Art or Art History who have achieved an A or A- in their capstone course (generally offered in the Fall semester of their Senior year), and who have maintained an overall GPA of 3.5+ and a GPA in their major of 3.5+ are invited to pursue an Honors Independent Study in the Spring semester of their Senior year. This option is generally designed for students who wish to pursue graduate work in the field. Students who earn an A or A- in this Honors Independent Study will graduate with Honors in the Major.
English & World Literatures majors who have maintained a GPA in the major of 3.5+ are invited to apply for an Honors Independent Study (EWL 499), which they would conduct in their final semester. Students who earn an A or A- in this Honors Independent Study will graduate with Honors in the Major.
For information on three students who completed Honors in the English and World Literatures major, click here: https://www.mmm.edu/live/news/3100-ewl-honors-in-the-major-seniors-present-final
Created under the supervision of a mentor who must be a full-time MMC faculty member, the Honors Independent Study in Art History and English & World Literatures is usually a substantial essay that entails original research. In the Art concentrations, it primarily takes the form of a body of artwork and exhibition, though there will be additional requirements.
Students in all majors give an oral presentation, open to the public, on their work at the end of the semester.
To pursue this track, Art, Art History, and EWL majors should secure the mentorship of a faculty member in her major. Then, the student and mentor will complete the Independent Study Certification and Contract and submit it to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for approval. If the student completes or exceeds the terms of the Contract, Honors in the Major will be awarded.
Advanced Psychology majors who have obtained a 3.5+ GPA overall and a 3.5+ GPA in Psychology may pursue a Senior Honors Thesis (PSYCH 492) in place of a capstone course. This option is designed for students intending to go to graduate school. These students will complete an honors project—an advanced-level paper that is either a sophisticated, original empirical research project or a comprehensive, in-depth literature review. If the project meets the requirements of the program, the student will graduate with Honors in Psychology. Students who wish to participate in this option must meet with the Chair of the Department Honors Committee at least one semester in advance of the planned participation.
Students in Biology and Biomedical Sciences may elect to pursue a Thesis Track, which involves three consecutive semesters of Natural Sciences research. See this website for more information: https://www.mmm.edu/departments/natural-sciences/thesis.php
Example of an Honors in the Major project
In Spring 2019, Psychology major Amanda Anzovino, ’19, worked on an Honors project that compared female police officer representation in U.S. municipal police departments in 1998 versus 2018. A Jeanette K. Watson Fellow, Amanda did original research for her project while completing a Watson-sponsored internship at the National Center for Women and Policing in Washington, DC. She later spoke about her research at the 31st Annual Greater New York Conference on Behavioral Research, winning an award for best presentation on forensic/applied psychology. She also presented a poster of her research at the Eastern Psychological Association Convention in June 2020.
Students who completed Honors in the Major in 2020
Julia Furnari, Honors in Biology, sponsored by Dr. Ann Aguanno. Project: “Investigating the Role of CDK5 in Alzheimer’s Disease and Type II Diabetes Mellitus”
Marjan Khan, Honors in Biology, sponsored by Dr. Alessandra Leri. Project: “Quantification of Fecal Indicator Bacteria on New York City Sidewalks and Evaluation of Transfer to the Indoor Environment”
Luisa Montoya, Honors in Studio Art, sponsored by Prof. Beth Shipley
Patrick Riley, Honors in Psychology, sponsored by Dr. Nava Silton
Annemarie Sims, Honors in English and World Literatures, sponsored by Dr. Cecilia Feilla
Brandon Tran, Honors in Biology, sponsored by Dr. Ann Aguanno. Project: “Implementation of a Cell Culture-Based Lab Module in Cell and Molecular Biology”
Students who completed Honors in the Major in 2019
Amanda Anzovino, Honors in Psychology, co-sponsored by Dr. Linda Solomon and Dr. Cheryl Paradis
Briana F. Defranco, Honors in Photography, sponsored by Prof. Millie Falcaro
Margaret (Peggy) Fioco, Honors in English and World Literatures, sponsored by Dr. Julie Huntington. Project: “‘Pacify My Mind’: Slave Women’s Escapism of Trauma through the Musicality of Spiritualism and Storytelling”
Sadie M. Inman, Honors in Studio Art, sponsored by Prof. Beth Shipley
Emily Karandy, Honors in English and World Literatures, sponsored by Dr. Mike Colvin. Project: “Sex Drives: Discussing Sexual Violence and the Thwarting of the Male Orgasm in Muriel Spark’s The Driver’s Seat and Judith Rosner’s Looking for Mr. Goodbar.”
Lauren L’Heureux, Honors in English and World Literatures, sponsored by Dr. Martha Sledge. Project: The Colonist Prescriptions of Identity: Regaining Autonomy Through the Use of the Magical and Fantastical in the Work of Salman Rushdie”
Students who Completed Honors in the Major in 2018
Kayleigh Barbarulo, Honors in English and World Literatures
Stephanie Edmonds, Honors in English and World Literatures
John Hamelburg, Honors in Art (Studio Art)
Emma Kamen, Honors in Biomedical Sciences, sponsored by Dr. Alessandra Leri. Project: “The Urban Ecosystem: A First-Year Course to Boost Cohort Formation and STEM Retention”
Jennelie Korbes, Honors in Psychology
Miranda Nichols, Honors in English and World Literatures
Cristina Shea, Honors in Psychology
Emma Suzuki-Jones, Honors in Art (Photography)
Kelly Tarbell, Honors in Psychology
Tracy Tauro, Honors in Biomedical Sciences
Gabriela Valencia, Honors in English and World Literatures
Students who Completed Honors in the Major in 2017
Taylor Allen, Honors in Biomedical Sciences
Cody Gambino, Honors in English and World Literatures
Wesley Hayden, Honors in English and World Literatures
Emily Inman, Honors in English and World Literatures
Elevit Perez, Honors in Biomedical Sciences
Penny Pun, Honors in English and World Literatures
Elias Ramos, Honors in English and World Literatures
Rosie Wenrich, Honors in Biology, sponsored by Dr. Alessandra Leri. Project: “Oxidation-Induced Changes in Marine Biomass: From Phytoplankton to Sedimentary Organic Matter”
Sarah Young, Honors in English and World Literatures
Students who Completed Honors in the Major in 2015
Marisa Dunigan, Honors in Biology, sponsored by Dr. Alessandra Leri. Project: “Antioxidant Activity in Edible Brown Seaweed”
Alexandra Fowle, Honors in Art History, sponsored by Dr. Adrienne Baxter Bell. Project: “Methodical Individuality: The Landscape Painting and Philosophy of William Hart”
Katherine Ness, Honors in Biomedical Sciences, sponsored by Dr. Alessandra Leri. Project: “Organochlorine By-Product Formation in Ozone Bleaching and Afterclearing Processes”
Estée Tanel O’Connor, Honors in Art History, sponsored by Dr. Adrienne Baxter Bell. Project: “Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s Composite Art: Visual and Aural Gesamtkunstwerken in the Victorian Era.”
Questions about Honors in the Major? Contact Dr. Adrienne Baxter Bell, Professor of Art History; Director, College Honors Program; Coordinator of Honors in the Major; Director, External Student Scholarships, at firstname.lastname@example.org