Three female students outside smiling

Two programs offer unique opportunities and benefits

Through involvement in the Gies Honors Program, high-potential students receive access to experiences and opportunities that will enhance their education and assist in developing them as purposeful, driven leaders.

Gies Honors includes the James Scholar Honors Program, Gies Scholar Program, and Gies Honors 1st Year Experience, as well as other distinctions and designations.

Students invited to be part of Gies Honors as incoming freshmen will participate in our Gies Honors 1st Year Experience. Through this experience, students will have access to Honors Courses, mentoring, and opportunities to develop their potential to be leaders in the Gies Community and beyond.

The James Scholar Honors program is a university honors program that is managed by each individual college and focuses on academic and professional development opportunities for our honors students.

The Gies Scholar Honors program is a smaller cohort of Gies students that seeks to develop purpose-driven leaders through dynamic classroom-based and experiential opportunities. Gies Scholars will develop knowledge, skills and competencies that will help them make a positive impact on their current and future communities.

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James Scholars

The James Scholar Program is a campus-wide program for honors students within a college. Some opportunities provided through the James Scholar Program at Gies Business include exciting international experiences, leadership skill development, and exclusive professional development.

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Gies Scholars

The Gies Scholar Program has a focus on leadership through service. Some opportunities provided through the program include a 4-year renewable scholarship, leadership skill development, exciting international experiences, and James Scholar status.

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Additional Honors Designations

Dean’s List

The Dean’s List is prepared each semester to honor students whose GPA for that semester is in the top 20% of the College. In addition, students must complete at least 12 hours of coursework in which traditional letter grades are earned.

Dean's Scroll

Created in 2008, the Dean’s Scroll Award is an annual award presented by the Deans of Gies College of Business, given to ten graduating seniors of the College each year. The award seeks to honor and recognize seniors who have demonstrated leadership skills that have benefited the Gies College of Business and its students. To be recognized as one of the Gies College of Business’s top ten graduating seniors, students should have not only excelled in the classroom, but also outside of the classroom with a goal of always furthering the mission and vision of Gies College of Business. Any Gies Undergraduate Student completing their degree in August, December, or May is eligible to apply. The application for this award occurs in the Spring semester.

College Honors 

College Honors are awarded at graduation to graduates with an overall GPA and Illinois coursework of 3.50 for Honors, 3.75 for High Honors, and 3.90 for Highest Honors.

Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society

Membership in Beta Gamma Sigma is the highest recognition a business student anywhere in the world can receive through a business program accredited by AACSB International. The top 10% of sophomores, juniors, and seniors will be invited to apply for membership in the University of Illinois Chapter of the International Business Honor Society.

Bronze Tablet Honoree Distinction

The University of Illinois began the tradition of inscribing the Bronze Tablets with the names of students receiving University Honors in 1925. A new tablet is hung in the Main Library each year. The Bronze Tablet serves as recognition of sustained academic achievement and is exclusively reserved for the top 3% of each college’s graduating class.

Campus Honors Program

The Campus Honors Program (CHP) provides an honors-quality way of satisfying general education requirements and helping students discover the interrelations between their own and other disciplines. Approximately 125 students are admitted to the CHP each year as first-year students. High-achieving students may apply for admission at the end of the first semester of their freshman year. Designated as “Chancellor’s Scholars,” students in the CHP may be enrolled in any undergraduate curriculum.

Gies News and Events

Graebner named Robert C. Evans Endowed Professor of Business

Melissa Graebner is the director of the Initiative for Qualitative Research in Innovation and Entrepreneurship (INQUIRE), which supports qualitative research exploring the complex social processes underlying the creation of novel ideas, development of innovative business models, and growth of new organizations.