Prospective Student News

Get to Know UConn!

As you go through the college decision process, you’ll want to know as much as you can about your potential schools.  Once you’ve been admitted into UConn and the Honors Program, there are several ways to find out what it’s like to be a Husky!

To really experience the day-to-day life of a UConn student, prospective students can sign up for a Husky-for-A-Day visit.  At their visit, prospective students will shadow a current UConn student.  They will attend a class or two, visit a dining hall, and get an inside look at the residence halls.  Throughout the day, their UConn student host will be available to answer any questions about academics, campus life, and everything UConn.

This year’s remaining Honors Husky-For-A-Day visits will occur on the following days:

  • Monday, April 14th
  • Tuesday, April 22nd

Visit and click on the “visit” tab for more information and to register!

When you attend an Honors Husky-for-a-Day visit you will have the opportunity to attend our Honors Meet and Greets, which are run by HIPS (Honors Initiative for Prospective Students) student coordinators.  At the Meet and Greets, students and parents will be able to mingle with current Honors students as well as Honors faculty and staff over light refreshments.  It is an extremely valuable experience to get acquainted with the many faces of the Honors Program at UConn!

Another opportunity to get to know UConn is the Spring Open House, which will occur on April 12th this year.  On this day, students and their families can get tours of the University and of the Buckley/Shippee Complex , the first-year Honors Learning Community.  There will be many opportunities to speak with representatives from various organizations and resources on campus.  In addition, there are presentations from the different schools and colleges, Residential Life, Study Abroad, Financial Aid, and more!  Again, visit for more information and to register for Open House!

We look forward to having you visit campus to learn more about UConn.  If you questions about these opportunities or the University, please email

Sarah Levine (’16)
Communication and Journalism
HIPS Coordinator

Meet the HIPS Coordinators!

2015 Coordinators

quian callender
Quian Callender, Honors student, class of 2016, Health Care Management major, Public Policy minor

My favorite part of being a Husky includes the ability always meet new people from all walks of life and across all interests.  In addition to UConn’s size, tight communities and close, lasting relationships with peers form.  There’s a huge sense of pride that’s apparent everyday especially during UConn traditions such as Homecoming Week and athletic games.  As a UConn student, you will have the opportunity to pursue any of your interests through the Honors Program, clubs, organizations, volunteering opportunities, internships, and research.




Sarah Levine, Honors Student, Class of 2016 Communication and Journalism Major Spanish Minor
Sarah Levine, Honors Student, Class of 2016, Communication and Journalism Major, Spanish Minor

My favorite thing about UConn is its size and diversity. In such a large school, I interact with all kinds of people every day.  There are always other people who are also interested in things that you are interested in- just look at all of the clubs, sports, and activities we have on campus.  Through these things, students can join tighter communities that make a 17,000-student university feel like home.  Personally, the thing that helped me transition into college the most was being a part of the Honors community.  Faculty and advisors are always around to answer questions or just talk, and I loved living with other honors students with whom I shared similar interests and classes.  From the minute I stepped onto campus, everyone has been welcoming and brimming with campus spirit.  Everyone is proud to be a Husky- especially at all of our many sporting events! Go Huskies!



Abby Raynor, Honors Student, Class of 2017 Molecular and Cell Biology Major, Pre-Med Track Spanish Minor
Abby Raynor, Honors Student, Class of 2017, Molecular and Cell Biology Major, Pre-Med Track, Spanish Minor

I am a freshman here in the University of Connecticut Honors Program. I intend to major in Molecular and Cellular Biology and minor in Spanish, and I am a part of UConn’s pre-med program. On campus, I am involved in numerous clubs and organizations like Pre-Med Society, Global Brigades and the UConn Club Swim Team. I am also an active member of the Honors community by volunteering at many recruitment events as a HIPS Student coordinator, and I’m currently training to be a student facilitator in the freshman seminar course each first-year Honors student is require to take. In my free time I love to attend all UConn sporting events, especially basketball, and show off my Husky pride!


Holly Chase
Holly Chase, Honors Student, Class of 2017, Health Care Management Major, Neuroscience Minor

My favorite part about being a Husky is the limitless opportunities that are available to each student. Your college experience is reflective to the work you put into it, and I believe engaging in campus events, clubs, and organizations is the best way to begin! In addition to volunteering for HIPS, I play Club Field Hockey, am a member of the Honors in Business Association, and consider myself an avid basketball fan! Through these outlets, I have made fantastic friends and gained peer connections that have positively shaped my direction as a student. Get involved and have fun! Bleed Blue!


Vince Pistritto
Vincent Pistritto, Honors Student, Class of 2018, Chemistry and Music Majors

Being a Husky means many things-either you’re pulling a sled in the Iditarod, you’re wearing a winter coat all year round, or you go to UConn. Coming from a small town in western Connecticut, everybody knows that when you’re a Husky, it only means one thing-you go to UConn. It is that sort of recognition and pride that sets UConn apart. You can meet so many different people and engage in truly thought provoking study while at the University. As a member of the Honors Program, you have a smaller family nestled within the larger student body. This gives you a small campus feel at a larger university. In addition, there is a wide variety of extra-curricular activities to get involved with which will enrich your college experience. I hope you all will come to UConn and get to experience first-hand what a special place Storrs, Connecticut truly is. Go Huskies!!!!



Kyle Terracciano, Honors Student, Class of 2018, Chemical Engineering Major, Mathematics Minor

I am a freshman in the University of Connecticut Honors Program.  I am currently majoring in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Mathematics.  On campus, I am a member of the American Institute for Chemical Engineers and I volunteer for the Northeast Regional Science Bowl, one of the largest events of its kind in the country  Over the summers, I coachcompetitive swimming in my hometown of Middlesex, NJ.  I stay involved with the Honors Program by helping organize events for prospective honors students as a HIPS Student coordinator.  I am also currently in training to be a UNIV 1784 facilitator for next year.  What I love about UConn is all of the amazing academic opportunities provided for students and the abundance of school spirit.  Go UConn!

Honors Student Interns at National Marine Life Center

This past summer, I had the amazing opportunity to intern at the National Marine Life Center (NMLC) in Bourne, Massachusetts. My internship position could be labeled as an Animal Care and Husbandry Intern as well as an Education Intern.  The opportunities I was able to experience were amazing and it was a summer I will never forget.

For the animal care portion of my internship, my responsibilities included caring for our in-house patients, Northern Red Bellied Cooters. These freshwater turtles are endangered in Massachusetts. We had several turtles that had severe shell deformities due to lack of correct enclosure lighting and food source, as well as other turtles suffering from different diseases and injuries. As an intern I was responsible for husbandry and tank care, as well as assisting in treatments, such as calcium supplements and tube feeding. The interns participated in rounds with the veterinarian and maintained the public critter tank.

As for the educational portion of my internship, I helped in leading two types of programs for kids. The NMLC has two programs that the interns were responsible for: Little Flippers Club, and Marine Medical Mystery. Little Flippers Club is for younger children, in which children learn about a group of animals through a story, arts and crafts, and presenting artifacts. In Marine Medical Mystery, the interns presented information to older groups of kids. We took a specific animal and pretended to treat that animal as if it were in the center. These education programs were good opportunities for us to present our knowledge.

As the final portion of my internship, I completed a project that consisted of creating a craft binder with instructions and samples for each craft. I also refurbished a harbor seal skeleton, creating bones out of clay that were missing, creating a new base, and new wiring.

The experience I have gained from this internship will definitely benefit me in any future endeavors. But in order to participate in this internship, I needed professional experience that I gained through the University of Connecticut’s Honors Program.  As an Honors student, I was able to participate in the Facilitator and Peer Mentoring class. This role gave me experience in leading in a classroom setting, which definitely benefited me in the education portion of my internship. I also gained one-on-one experience from UConn’s Peer Allies Through Honors (PATH) program. This benefited me in working with the other interns as well as the other staff at the NMLC.

Author Anonymous

Honors students may participate in a variety of leadership opportunities offered through the Honors Program and UConn as a whole.  These involvements provide them with invaluable experiences that contribute to their personal and professional development, often leading to further opportunities at UConn and beyond.

UConn Honors Congressional Internship in Washington, D.C.

Some of the best opportunities to take advantage of at UConn and in the Honors Program are internships.  During the spring 2012 semester, I participated in the UConn Honors Congressional Internship Program in Washington, D.C.  Each year, UConn places a student with each one of the Connecticut Senate and House offices in Washington, D.C.  As part of this internship, I worked in the office of Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-3).  I applied for the D.C. internship program because I wanted to get a practical and professional experience in my discipline of political science.  I hoped the experience would help me grow professionally and that I would learn about politics and Congress in a way not possible in the classroom.  Add to that the prospect of living in Washington, D.C. on Capitol Hill, and the decision to apply was an easy one.

As an intern, some of my daily tasks included compiling news clippings, sorting mail, answering phones, booking tours for constituents, and entering constituent correspondence in the IQ computer system.  In addition, I often was asked to attend briefings or hearings, on topics ranging from health care to agriculture policy, and type up memos for the relevant staffer.  Furthermore, I wrote letters in response to constituent questions and performed other projects for the staff as needed.  There were often days when I was the only full-time intern in the office, adding to my responsibilities.

Also, just living in D.C. near the National Mall and Smithsonian museums, having the ability to do research for class in the Library of Congress, and experiencing many different D.C. restaurants and neighborhoods always provided so many things to do.  In particular, getting a tour of the Capitol Dome and being around for the blooming of the cherry blossoms were definitely highlights of the semester.

My experiences in UConn and Honors prepared me very well to take on this internship.  Political science courses I had taken, particularly about Congress, helped give me the knowledge to understand how the institution worked and make connections with what I experienced every day.  Furthermore, I developed organizational, research, communication, and leadership skills through Honors Program organizations, facilitating an UNIV class, and Honors coursework.

Overall, the D.C. Internship program helped me develop both professionally and academically, and made me a better political science student and citizen.  The program fulfilled and exceeded my expectations.  This amazing program is just one of the many internship opportunities the University of Connecticut and Honors Program can help students attain to further their personal and professional development.

John Dearborn, Political Science major, Honors Scholar, Class of 2013

To learn more about the UConn Honors Congressional Internship Program please visit the Honors Study Abroad/Away web page.

The College Application Process

The college application process can seem daunting and overwhelming at times, but it certainly does not have to be!  As a current junior in college who has certainly had her fair share of experience with the application process, I would love to share some tips and tricks that I have learned along the way.  One of the most important aspects of this process is to start early.  If possible, get your college essay done during the summer so that you can have time to edit it during the school year.  For the essay itself, remember to always answer what the question is asking, this may seem like a no brainer, but you would be surprised how many students don’t do it.  Also, make sure that it is authentic and really speaks to who you are because this is one of the major ways in which the admissions board gets to know you.  Finally, it is essential that the essay is free from grammatical errors because they will get noticed.

When choosing which schools to apply for, it is helpful to make a spreadsheet that includes what you are looking for in your future college.  For example, you might include average class size, average financial aid awarded, whether or not a particular major is offered, distance from home, housing situation, etc.  This can help greatly with organization, especially when it comes to writing secondary applications that are specific to each school.

As far as the timeline for application season goes, I would say that senior year is when everything starts to really come together.  It is a good idea to visit colleges before school starts since you have more flexibility with dates during the summer.  Early decision and early action applications are usually due in October or November, so it is wise to work on those applications first.  Scholarship applications are due around this time as well, and these can take quite some time to complete.  Regular decision applications are usually due mid-January or February, so having these applications finalized by the time you go back to school after winter break is a good idea.  After applications are submitted, relax!  Enjoy your senior year, prepare for and go to interviews if necessary and watch the big envelopes roll in!


Shilpa Kolli, Class of ’15, Environment Science Major, concentration in Chemistry, Pre-Med

HIPS: Meet the Coordinators!

HIPS (Honors Initiatives for Prospective Students) has four student coordinators who, with the help of an advisor, oversee the program.  The coordinators are responsible for maintaining communication with prospective students via email and social media.  They also play a major role in putting together Open House events and meet-and-greets for prospective students.  The four coordinators have written posts to introduce themselves and to explain what being a UConn Husky means to them.  One can notice the themes of pride in community and engaging academics as a commonality in all of the posts.


 Laura Santry, Honors student, class of 2014
Physiology & Neurobiology (PNB) and Spanish major
Molecular & Cellular Biology (MCB) minor

 My favorite part of being a UConn Husky is the pride and sense of community I feel on campus.  I love attending football, basketball, soccer and hockey games to cheer for the Huskies.  I also enjoy when the entire UConn community comes together to show their Husky Pride for events such as Homecoming, Husky-thon, Lip-Sync, Relay for Life and so much more! Furthermore, as a member of the Honors Program, I have enjoyed taking interdisciplinary Honors core classes.


Lauren Silverio, Honors student, class of 2015
English and Psychology major
Spanish minor

Being a UConn Husky carries special meaning for every student at the University.  It can mean being actively involved in athletics through any of the Division 1 sports teams, club sports, or intramurals; it can mean being a contributing member of volunteer organizations both on and off campus; it can mean engaging in challenging and rewarding academic pursuits in any of the numerous programs that are offered.  Most importantly, being a UConn Husky means that all of these different opportunities are always at our disposal – we can be involved in all aspects of student life whether it be athletics, volunteer experience, or academics throughout our time here.  More than anything else, being a UConn Husky means showing pride in the University and enthusiasm for our experience.



 Quian Callender, Honors student, class of 2016
Health Care Management major
Public Policy minor

My favorite part of being a Husky includes the ability always meet new people from all walks of life and across all interests.  In addition to UConn’s size, tight communities and close, lasting relationships with peers form.  There’s a huge sense of pride that’s apparent everyday especially during UConn traditions such as Homecoming Week and athletic games.  As a UConn student, you will have the opportunity to pursue any of your interests through the Honors Program, clubs, organizations, volunteering opportunities, internships, and research.



Shilpa Kolli, Honors student, class of 2015
Environmental Science major,
Chemistry concentration (Pre-Med Track)

My favorite part of being a UConn Husky is having the freedom to pursue just about any academic opportunity while also having a rich extracurricular experience.  For example, although I am a pre-medical student, I am able to learn about the environment and do research in environmental chemistry while staying on the pre-med track.  Another great part of UConn is how great the faculty is about encouraging students to pursue research and independent learning because this really helps to shape how engaged students are in their studies.  Students at UConn are given the opportunity to really pursue any of their goals here, both in and outside of the classroom.


Coordinator Office Hours (held in the Honors Programming and Events Office in Buckley):

Quian – Mondays 10-11am

Laura – Mondays 12-2pm

Shilpa – Tuesday 9-10am

Lauren – Thursdays 1-2pm


Please feel free to contact any of the coordinators at  We would love to hear from you and answer any questions you may have about UConn.


Recent Graduate to Present Senior Design Project to NASA Engineers

A close-up of the robotic arm.

A close-up of the robotic arm developed by Brian Coleman ’13 (ENG) and two other students as their senior design project. (Cathleen Torrisi/UConn Photo)

By Cathleen Torrisi

New UConn graduate Brian Coleman ’13 (ENG) recently completed a major accomplishment. And not just by graduating as an Honors Scholar with a strong GPA in the demanding biomedical engineering program. His senior design project – a robotic arm – so impressed director of undergraduate biomedical engineering Donald Peterson that he is arranging for Coleman to present it to a team of NASA engineers at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center in Houston. Continue reading

Pre-med Student Exploring Range of Opportunities at UConn

Shervin Etemad
Pre-med student Shervin Etemad ’14 (CLAS) was inspired by UConn’s Leadership Legacy Experience. (Max Sinton ’15 (CANR)/UConn Photo)

By Lauren Lalancette

Shervin Etemad ’14 (CLAS) entered UConn with a declared major and has never wavered – but as graduation approaches, he’s becoming increasingly open-minded about his career path.

A molecular and cell biology major from the beginning, Etemad wasn’t among the one-third of freshmen who enter UConn without having chosen a major. A Trumbull native, he graduated in the top 4 percent of his high school class, and accepted UConn’s Academic Excellence merit scholarship along with an invitation to join the Honors Program. Continue reading