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Department of History
University of Mississippi

Honors College

The Department of History invites students enrolled in the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College to major in history and encourages current history majors to consider joining the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College.

Who joins the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College?
History majors from all kinds of backgrounds have become members of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College. You can read more about some of them below.

Honors College_ Grisham (1)
Honors College_ Porter
Honors College_ Whittington (1)
Honors College_ Cantrell (1)
Honors College_ Debar (1)
Honors College_ Loveless (1)

Why should you join the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College?
There are many reasons to become a member of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College. As part of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, you’ll graduate with honors, something very few University of Mississippi undergraduates can claim. There are also loads of additional perks. You’ll get the opportunity to take exclusive small courses with other honors students–history faculty, for instance, have recently offered honors courses on historical representations in videogames and the history of disease and epidemics in the United States. You’ll get priority registration. And you know that honors thesis you’re probably terrified to work on? It’s not all that different from the capstone research paper you’re going to need to write as a history major anyway!

Did you know you can join the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College even if you didn’t enter the College as a freshman?
The Junior-Entry Program allows both transfer and current UM students to join the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College. Through the Junior-Entry Program students will become involved in research in their majors, take Honors courses, and contribute to the larger society through community service.

Admission Requirements
A minimum of a 3.50 undergraduate GPA
Permission of the student’s major department
At least 45 earned college credit hours

Honors College Requirements
Successful completion of the Honors Capstone and Senior Thesis
Successful completion of at least one other Honors course
Successful completion of the Community Action Component while a member of the SMBHC

The Honors Capstone and Senior Thesis requirements encourage students either to develop their own scholarly interests or to become more involved with the research pursuits of University faculty. The completion of this independent work, particularly with the thesis, will set you apart from other university students. The most common experience for these two requirements is to do independent research with a faculty mentor in the junior year, and then write the results of that research as your thesis in the senior year. For more information on the capstone and thesis requirements, click here.

Participants in the Junior-Entry Program have 24-hour access to the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors Center, which houses a computer lab, lounge, kitchen, study rooms, and classrooms. With twenty-four hour access to the building, many students see the Honors Center as a place to socialize and as their “home away from home.” They also have the advantage of priority registration and have the option of living in honors housing.

Upon graduation, students who successfully complete the Junior-Entry Program will graduate as an Honors Scholar in his or her major (e.g. Honors Scholar in Biochemistry). The student will participate in the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College commissioning ceremony, and the distinction of being an Honors Scholar will be noted on the student’s transcript.

The Junior-Entry Program is truly a rewarding experience. To apply, download the application. Or you can request a copy by calling 662-915-7294 or e-mailing The application deadlines are the end of the first week of both the fall and spring semesters.

Want to hear more before you apply?
Reach out to Professor Vivian Ibrahim ( to learn more about what the Honors College can do for you and how to put together the best possible application. Once you’ve joined the Honors College, Professor Mikaëla Adams ( can help you network with other history majors in the Honors College and navigate the thesis-writing process.