Honors Program

The Dominican Honors Program offers a meaningful learner-directed academic experience that promotes the talents and interests of students dedicated to intellectual and personal growth in becoming socially responsible global citizens.

students in a classroom

The Dominican Honors Program is one of Dominican’s many paths to excellence.  It incorporates the University’s Institutional Learning Outcomes to offer a distinctive plan of study for students who are dedicated to achieving exceptional academic and personal standards.

The close-knit Honors learning community is rooted in the Dominican pillars of study, reflection, community, and service while upholding the values of the University as shaped by its history and Californian identity. 

There are many benefits to participation in the Honors Program:

  • Students assume leadership roles as representatives on the Honors Board or Student Honors Board to directly shape Honors programming.
  • Students may register during the first day of priority registration along with senior-year students.
  • Juniors and seniors may take graduate courses (with instructor permission).
  • Students have exclusive access to the Honors Room in the Alemany Library, providing  additional quiet space to work on projects or study.


Honors courses are taught as experiential learning seminars where students have considerable control regarding the issues they address and the ways to address them, providing an alternative to the University-wide core-curriculum requirements.

Courses are designed to be both curricular and co-curricular, offering students authentic, hands-on opportunities to fine tune their skills, put their ideas into practice, and gain the skills and knowledge to become engaged global citizens.

With an emphasis on civic learning and community engagement, the Honors curriculum creates an environment where the student can be an active and thoughtful learner. The Honors co-curriculum requirements focus on global learning and leadership opportunities such as faculty-led Honors trips and place-based projects that aim to foster intercultural knowledge, cultural humility, social responsibility, and global interconnectivity.

The Honors Program is administered by the Honors Director and the Honors Board. The Honors Board is tasked with forming policies for Honors admissions, curriculum and co-curriculum, academic standards, assessment, awarding Honors scholarships, and program branding and communications. 

The Student Honors Board (SHB) represents the Honors Students of Dominican University of California. There are eight members on the SHB, each with a specific title and duty. Class representatives and Member-At-Large serve on the Honors Board as well.

  • Freshman Class Representative: Sachie Ohara, Nursing
  • Sophomore Class Representative: Abby Mae Dalman, Nursing
  • Junior Class Representative: Raquel Suba, Nursing
  • Senior Class Representative: Mikaila Imperio, Nursing
  • School of Liberal Arts and Education Representative: Mia Nguyen, Junior, Psychology
  • Barowsky School of Business Representative: Patricia Garcia, Junior, Business Administration
  • School of Health and Natural Sciences Representative: Sasha Smishko, Junior, Nursing
  • Member-At-Large: Julaby Dalman, Junior, Nursing 

To graduate from the Honors Program a student must complete the following:

  • 20 units of Honors Core courses
  • A Global Learning Experience
  • A Leadership Experience. 
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5.

These requirements may be appropriately prorated for transfer students or students who join the program after their first semester at Dominican. 

students on graduation day

National Collegiate Honors Council

The Honors Program has institutional membership in the National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) at the regional and national levels.

Learn More

Faculty and Staff

Lynn Sondag headshot

Lynn Sondag

Associate Professor of Art Honors Program Director
thomas burke headshot

Thomas Burke, MFA

Assistant Professor, Literature & Languages and Social & Cultural Studies
Christian Dean headshot

Christian Dean, PhD

Professor of Political Science & Humanities Debate Coach
George Faithful headshot

George Faithful, PhD

Assistant Professor of Religion and Philosophy
Gigi Gokcek headshot

Gigi Gokcek, PhD

Dean, School of Liberal Arts and Education Professor of Political Science
Perry Guevara headshot

Perry Guevara, PhD

Assistant Professor of English
Gay Lynch headshot

Gay Lynch, PhD

Assistant Professor, Humanities
Leslie Ross headshot

Leslie Ross, PhD

Professor and Chair of Art History and Visual Studies
Julia van der Ryn headshot

Julia van der Ryn, MA

Executive Director, Center for Community Engagement Assistant Professor, Philosophy and Social Justice
Amy Wong headshot

Amy R. Wong, PhD

Assistant Professor of English