Must Honors Student Live in Honors Housing?

Question: I was recently admitted to the University of Connecticut for next fall, and I was pretty surprised to find out that I was invited to join the Honors program. I've been reading about the program, and I've noticed that there is special Honors housing. Why is this? Will I be living with ONLY honors students? I really don't want to be isolated from the general student body.

Congratulations on your admission to the UConn honors program.

I don't know anything about their honors housing except what I read on the UConn Web site. (See below.) But, in general, some colleges and universities give honors students a choice of living in an honors dorm or not, while other schools automatically put all honors students together. It sounds like UConn falls into this latter group, but it's worth a phone call there to double check.

Most of the time, honors students at big public universities appreciate the chance to live with like-minded others. Typical first-year problems (e.g., alcohol abuse, noisy all-night parties) are often less prevalent in honors dorms. Not surprisingly, too, honors dorms tend to be among the nicest ones on many campuses. On the other hand, I've occasionally spoken with honors students who, like you, prefer NOT to be segregated from the general population.

According to the UConn Honors Program Web site, after your first year you have the option of remaining in honors housing or living elsewhere on campus.

Personally, unless you have strong reasons for wanting to avoid the honors dorm, I would suggest that--if you enroll at UConn--you do elect to live there for at least your first year, if indeed you have a choice. Transitioning to college life can be challenging, and living in a place with students who share your academic talents and focus may help to make that transition smoother. You will have plenty of opportunities to mingle with other classmates, regardless of where you live on campus.

Here is the link to the UConn honors housing page, along with the text that explains the options.

HousingHonors housing provides the opportunity to live in an academic environment that supports the social, emotional, and personal growth of Honors students. Living in Honors housing will facilitate a stronger sense of community within the program and will encourage your academic success.
As first year Honors students, you will be assigned to live in Shippee Hall, which is the Honors First-Year Residential Community. There are also some spaces for Honors students who wish to continue living in Shippee after their first year. After the first year, you will have a wide variety of housing options offered by the Department of Residence Life. You may live in any housing option that is available during room selection after the first year. You may also wish to continue living in Honors Housing in the upper-division residence hall, South A. Traditionally, South A has housed juniors and seniors in the Honors Program.

Good luck to you, whatever you decide.