Our Mission

Honors Humanities offers the opportunity for close, imaginative engagement with art, literature, issues, and ideas that, across time and across cultures, have expressed what it means to be human. The humanities have been at the very heart of our educational system from its origins, working to foster personal intellectual development, a broad understanding of the world, and practical skills for lives and careers. The animating principle of Honors Humanities is that a robust background in the liberal arts is central to every path in life and every career in the workplace.

Who We Are

What We Do

What We Value

Fearless Ideas: Philosophy, literature, history, and the arts provide a wealth of great ideas which allow us to see ourselves and the world in new ways and to think afresh about our values, goals, and ambitions.

Wide-spread Application: The Arts and Humanities provide essential tools to address social, political, and cultural issues such as climate change, immigration, the power of social media, and political partisanship. We count internships as part of our program requirements.

Diverse Perspectives: Diverse perspectives challenge students to engage situations from multiple angles, often leading them to new insights and discoveries. Multidisciplinary tools and perspectives are used by myriad innovators, including humanitarian organizations such as Oxfam as well as companies such as Google. Honors Humanities offers students the chance to make connections across the arts, literature, and history and provides an ideal complement to majors in business, engineering, science, and social science.

Global Thinking: We live in an interconnected world which invites us to honor our shared humanity but also to value differences of culture, identity, and experience. We encourage study abroad and count it toward our program requirements.

Service and Sustainability: In our lifetimes, we will live through many humanitarian crises as well as far-reaching environmental transformation. As people continue to connect across borders, and as humans come to dominate most aspects of planetary life, humanities perspectives can both help us interpret our changing world and they can offer solutions. Throughout the year, we host service and sustainability events, including Humaniday, an annual day of service for the entire HoHum community. In one of our core classes, we bring humanities perspectives to global issues like environmental justice. We also recently partnered with UMD's Green Office and the Office of Sustainability to acquire our Green Office certification.

Why Honors Humanities?

You’ll be part of a tight-knit community of peers, mentors, and alumni.

As one of the smaller living and learning programs in the Honors College, we pride ourselves on cultivating a welcoming and intellectually stimulating atmosphere, where you will form real and close relationships with your fellow HoHummers and with faculty.

With such a community, you will get the experience of attending a small liberal arts school, while also gaining the benefits of a large state university. Join us to make your closest college friends and to connect with faculty who get to know you and sincerely care about your development as a student and a person.

You’ll get the benefits of a humanities education, whatever your major.

About 20% of our 2019 freshmen class are majors in the College of Arts & Humanities; the other 80% are majoring in a myriad of majors, including sciences, engineering, social sciences, journalism, and public policy, among others. This program offers you the opportunity to either balance your education or deepen your engagement with the arts and humanities. Whatever your major, Honors Humanities will ensure that you enjoy the many benefits of a humanities education. Some general benefits include:

  1. Excelling in critical thinking skills.
  2. Cultivating visionary leadership skills.
  3. Excelling on graduate school entrance exams.
  4. Enjoying coursework that encourages you to authentically grow as a person and a professional.

You’ll build skills for your career.

Increasingly, employers in many fields are looking for people with solid critical thinking and written and oral communication skills, all of which our program emphasizes.

Moreover, our program offers the kind of close mentorship and intellectual atmosphere that encourages you to find the career that you will find most satisfying.

Giving to Honors Humanities

Would you like to support the work we do at Honors Humanities? If you would like to donate to support our students, curriculum, and programming, please visit our donation page. Your donation to Honors Humanities supports our connections with the arts & humanities in Washington, DC, our curriculum development, and our students’ Keystone projects. Thank you for supporting education in the arts and humanities! If you would like to contact us directly, please email hhum@umd.edu.