Honors at Thomas More College

James Graham Brown Honors Program

High school seniors of exceptional academic ability are eligible to apply for admission to the Thomas More Honors Program. Students accepted into the program can receive full-tuition James Graham Brown Honors Scholarships, and they participate in a special program of Honors Seminars, Community Experience, and the opportunity for advanced research (a Fellowship) in their majors under the direction of Honors professors. This small program not only enhances the educational experience of academically superior students, and provides them with tuition-free scholarships, but also provides Honors students with exceptional college credentials for future experiences or graduate school opportunities.

Interested students may obtain an application form from Kristi Lehmer, Executive Director of Enrollment Management, lehmerk@thomasmore.edu, 859.344.3514.


Minimum qualifications to be considered for the Honors Program are:

  • an ACT score of 30 or SAT score of 1340 (critical reading + math);
  • a cumulative GPA of 3.6;
  • a completed application which includes:
    • three letters of recommendation (attesting to academic merit and character);
    • written essay;
    • resume highlighting community service.

The Honors Committee selects, from among those who are eligible to apply, students who show the highest scholastic ability based on their grades, a written essay on an assigned topic, letters of recommendation, as well as outstanding character and personal qualities that add to the Honors Program. For all finalists, an on-campus interview will be conducted.

The Honors Committee makes appointments at the end of each spring semester to fill vacancies in the program created by graduating Honors students. To fulfill their JGB Honors Program commitment, Thomas More Honors students must register each semester for a full-time program of at least 15 credits, including the Honors Seminar (3 credits) or Community Service or Fellowship project. In the first semester of the first year, FYS is taken in lieu of the Seminar.

Honors students must maintain a high quality of performance in written material, verbal presentation, and critical judgment in all areas of the Honors Program. They must also maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.6 or better (rounding up is not permitted). Students who do not maintain quality performance or exhibit major deficiencies of character will be removed from the program, subject to the appeal procedures of the College.

Thomas More Scholars

Honors students are initially appointed as Honors Scholars. During this period of the program, students must complete the minimum requirements of two Honors Seminars and one full year (90 hours) of Community Service. Every student must fulfill an Honors Program every semester (Seminar or Service or Fellowship as detailed below).

Community Service Experience is a service program based within the College's service learning mission. The Honors Program has its own Tutoring/Mentoring Program in conjunction with John G. Carlisle Elementary School in nearby Covington, Kentucky. Many Honors students participate in the tutoring Program but other Community Service options are available. Community Service is possible concurrently with the Honors Seminar or Fellowship Experience.

Additionally JGB Honors Program students will be expected to participate in all Honors Program activities such as a welcome luncheon, the Camp Joy Weekend, the leadership workshops, lectures, and cultural opportunities.

Thomas More Scholars must complete at least two Honors seminars and an approved Community Service experience (3 credits) and have finished the junior year as minimum requirements for advancement to the optional Fellowship level of the program.

Thomas More Fellows

During the second semester of the junior year, Scholars who have completed the minimum requirements of the Scholar's level (two Honors seminars and one Community Experience) have the option to apply for appointment during their senior year as a Thomas More Fellow. Fellows do not take Honors seminars or Community Experience, but instead undertake special Honors research in their majors. This senior Honors research must consist of a two semester three credit project approved both by the Honors Committee and by the Fellow's department. The Honors research is supervised by a departmental Honors professor.

Honors Graduates

Thomas More Fellows at graduation wear the Thomas More Medal and receive a special Diploma noting the Fellowship.

All recipients of James Graham Brown Honors Scholarships, Scholars and Fellows, and all Honors professors, become life-members of the James Graham Brown Honors Society, which meets several times per year to re-unite the graduates of the Honors Program in social activities and service projects.