UC Blue Ash College Honors Program

UC students at Commencement

The UC Blue Ash College Honors Program was launched in fall 2017, and designed specifically for our most academically exceptional students. If you have a high school GPA of 3.2 and an ACT score of 25 or higher (or SAT of 1200), you will be invited to join this selective group, and we’ll provide you with opportunities both in and out of the classroom that will enrich your education. Current UCBA and transfer students can also apply to be admitted to the program.

UCBA Honors is built around experiential learning. Whether it is in specially-designed honors seminars, special leadership opportunities, research projects with professors, or study abroad programs, students in UCBA Honors learn by doing and by reflecting and connecting their experiences to their larger academic, career and personal goals.

If you have any questions about the UC Blue Ash Honors Program, please feel free to email us at UCBAHonors@uc.edu.

The UC Blue Ash Honors Program offers students a wide range of benefits.

Female UC Blue Ash student

Academic Rigor

Take special honors-designated classes with other outstanding students.

UC Blue Ash OneStop staff at Open House

Special Perks

You will enjoy perks that include early priority registration for UC Blue Ash classes.

UC Blue Ash students on a study abroad trip

Experiential Learning & Leadership

Participate in a wide range of exciting opportunities to take learning beyond the classroom.

Two UC Blue Ash students outside on campus

Honors Scholarships

Compete for scholarships available specifically for our Honors Program students.


Get featured in our print and website promotions, as our best and brightest students! Plus, Honors designation is noted on students’ diplomas, and Honors students wear gold Honors cords during the commencement ceremony.

UC Blue Ash student giving a speech

At UC Blue Ash College, you’ll find the perfect environment to excel.

Rigorous Academics

UC Blue Ash is a fully accredited college of the University of Cincinnati, and follows the university’s same demanding curriculum.

Expert Faculty

UC Blue Ash faculty members are leaders in their fields of study, publishing and presenting their research in national and international venues. They are also recognized as some of the best teachers at the University of Cincinnati.

Student Success

Although an integral part of a major research university, UC Blue Ash focuses on teaching and learning. That means small class sizes and attentive faculty and staff whose primary goal is to work with students to achieve their academic and career goals.

Program Structure

Full time students in any UCBA academic track are eligible for UCBA Honors. The program is designed to be flexible, and is built around these two key features.


Through Experiences, students engage in focused, experiential learning activities that are also flexible, since UCBA Honors students are enrolled in a variety of academic programs. Students need to complete two Experiences in order to graduate with Honors from UC Blue Ash College. These include:

  • Honors Seminars. Courses specially designed around interdisciplinary and experiential learning, where the focus is on discussion and exploration.
  • Honors Intermediate Composition. Special sections of UC’s core writing class built around experiential and service learning.
  • Leadership Experiences. Serve as a UCBA Student Ambassador, Major Mentor or in any number of other college leadership opportunities.
  • Research Experiences. Work with a UC Blue Ash professor on a project, or design your own, and present your work at the college's annual research conference, Mediated Minds
  • Creative Experiences. Write, design, paint, sculpt, and show off your work in the Blue Ash Review or at the UC Blue Ash Gallery.
  • Study Abroad. UC Blue Ash offers two to three well-designed and affordable study abroad programs every year, that automatically count as Experiences.
  • Self-Designed Experience. Students work with a UCBA professor to design an Experience that fits your interests and goals, such as an independent research or creative project, travel and research abroad. Students can complete a long-term service project, or an internship or shadowing project designed around their career interests.

The goal of the Experiences is to provide students with the flexibility to design a program that fits their interests and goals, and develop as scholars, leaders and people.


In order to connect their Experiences and other UCBA Honors activities to their larger academic program and personal development, each honors student develops and updates a personal Learning Portfolio, a public website where students not only show off their work but also thoughtfully reflect on what they learned during their Experiences, and how to build on them in the future.

Reflection is a vital learning tool that helps students make connections between their different classes and activities, and UC Blue Ash is a leader in helping students integrate thoughtful reflection into all parts of the learning process

Professor Sue Sipple and a student on a study abroad trip
Blue Ash Review
UC Blue Ash Student group on a Study Abroad trip
Students working in the field
UC Blue Ash Study Abroad logo

Program Requirements

All students need to complete the following requirements in order to graduate from the UC Blue Ash Honors Program:

  • Enroll and complete Gateway to UC Blue Ash Honors, a one-hour introductory course.
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.2 by the time of graduation.
  • Enroll as a full-time student at UC Blue Ash every semester in the program.
  • Complete two Honors Experiences.
  • Design and regularly update a Learning Portfolio.
  • Present their work in a public venue.


Four Honors students posing with tree artwork


All students enrolled in UCBA Honors automatically receive a $500 UC Blue Ash Honors Scholarship for every semester they are in the program. Students also have the opportunity to apply for special scholarships only available to honors students.

In addition, UC Blue Ash Honors Students can apply for the more than $60,000 that our college gives out every year as part of its general scholarship program.

Students at commencement ceremony

Special Recognition

All students who complete the program and graduate from UCBA will receive the notation “With Honors from the UCBA Honors Program” on their diploma and their transcript, and will be allowed to wear a special cord at graduation. Also, we encourage all students who are eligible to also apply for membership in the UCBA chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, the international honors society for students at two-year colleges.

Program Admission

Students are admitted into the UCBA Honors Program through two pathways:

  • First year students with no college experience are admitted based on their high school achievements. All students with a minimum 3.2 high school GPA and a 25 ACT or 1200 SAT, who apply and accepted to UCBA, are automatically invited to enroll in UCBA Honors. The priority application deadline for Fall 2019 admission is May 1, 2019.
  • Current UCBA students or those transferring to UCBA with at least a 3.2 college GPA are invited to submit an application. Keep an  eye out for the application.


Students who successfully complete the UC Blue Ash Honors Program and transition to UC’s Uptown Campus to complete their baccalaureate program will have the opportunity to enroll in the University Honors Program. Those who enroll in the UHP will receive credit for their Experiences at UC Blue Ash.

McMicken Hall on Uptown Campus

Honors Advisors

Carla Henderson

Last Names A-D

Carla Henderson, DNP, MSN, RN, CNE, CHSE

Walters Hall 281
(513) 936-7103

Claudia Skutar

Last Names E-K

Claudia Skutar, PhD

Progress Hall 220E
(513) 936-1789

Jody Ballah

Last Names L-R

Jody Ballah, MA, Dip.Ed

Walters Hall 132
(513) 745-5657

Daniella Fisher

Last Names S-Z

Daniella Fisher, PhD

Walters Hall 375
(513) 936-1556

Meet the UC Blue Ash Honors Ambassadors

Six UC Blue Ash Honors Program Student Ambassadors

Clockwise, from top left: Madeline Munro; Chloe Cummins; Hannah Roberts; Divya Joshi; Alexandra Georgiton; Natalie Pfaltzgraff

The UCBA Honors Ambassadors organize events for all honors students and represent the program at UCBA and within the Cincinnati community. This is just one of the many leadership and organizational opportunities available to students in the UC Blue Ash Honors Program.

Acting Honors Director

Brenda Refaei

Dr. Brenda Refaei

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Brenda Refaei as the acting honors director for the spring and summer 2019 semesters. 

Contact Information:

Progress Hall 120J
(513) 936-7164

Contact Information

Honors Program

Progress Hall • Room 120B
Program Coordinator

Phone: (513) 745-5645
Email: ucbahonors@ucmail.uc.edu