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Applying to Honors EXCEL

The Honors EXCEL program admits students during two cycles: most students will apply in spring of their second year for fall admission; students with three to four semesters remaining at WVU can also apply for spring admission during the fall semester.

Spring 2021 Admission

Applications are now open for January 2021 admission into the Honors EXCEL program .

Call for Applications

Are you a WVU student who will be a junior by January 2021? Are you passionate about research, community service, global engagement or creative arts, and looking for ways to enrich that passion through experiential learning? Then join the Honors Experiential and Community Engaged Learning (EXCEL) program by applying with a project idea for January 2021 admission!

Applications are open Thursday, Oct. 15 at 12 noon through Sunday, Nov. 15 at 11:59 p.m. (EST). To apply, read and follow the detailed instructions listed below, and submit your application on the Honors College applications portal.

About the Honors EXCEL Program

The Honors EXCEL program supports WVU undergraduate students as they create, develop and implement experiential and community-engaged learning projects on a topic of their choice. Honors EXCEL students develop and implement their projects over three to four semesters, supported by the Honors EXCEL program through  tailored courses, experiential learning, dedicated mentors and affiliate faculty, and project funding. A detailed, semester-by-semester description of the program and of its components can be found in the Honors EXCEL Program Handbook.

Student Eligibility

West Virginia University students from all specialties and fields of study (social sciences, STEM, the arts, the humanities, etc.) are invited to apply for January 2021 admission, provided they:

Eligibility for Honors EXCEL is not dependent on previous enrollment in the Honors Foundations program.

Project Eligibility

Students may apply with any project idea, coming from any field or academic specialty. It is expected that most project ideas will be in their early stages, and not yet fully developed. 

A strong project proposal:

Otherwise, the theme and topic of your project idea are limited only by your imagination. For ideas and examples, check out the Project Inspiration page of the Honors EXCEL program.

Want to Learn More?

We are more than happy to address your questions, to provide you with additional information about the program and the application process, and to support you as you design your project idea and application.


To learn more about the Honors EXCEL program and about how to apply for admission, stop by during any of these open info sessions:


Stop by during our weekly open office hours, available each week.


Contact us by email at

How to Apply

The Honors EXCEL application process for January 2021 admission is open Thursday, Oct. 15 at 12 noon to Sunday, Nov. 15 at 11:59 p.m. (EST).

In order to apply,


Before you submit your application, verify that it is ready to be submitted by answering the following questions:

  1. What is your project idea? How do you plan to accomplish it over the next three to four semesters?
  2. Who will help mentor you on your project? (We can help you find a mentor if you contact us beforehand!)
  3. Who will be impacted by your project? (community impact)
  4. How have your previous curricular or extracurricular experiences prepared and qualified you to take on this project?
  5. How will this project enrich your undergraduate academic experience?


To submit your application to the Honors EXCEL program, follow the steps outlined below.

  1. Go to the WVU Honors College application portal website.
  2. Register for an account by clicking the “Register” button, and entering your name, WVU MIX email account, and a password, and clicking “Create Account.” (Please note: if you have already made an account to apply to another program, you do not need to do so again.)
  3. Sign in using your MIX email account and a new password.
  4. Click "Continue to site."
  5. Click "View programs."
  6. Select the "Honors EXCEL program" page by clicking "MORE."
  7. Read through the explanation of the program, and click "Apply." This will take you to the application checklist page. This page will let you see where you are in the application process.
  8. Look at the task list. You will see two tasks: "January 2021 Honors EXCEL Program Application" and "Request Mentor Confirmation." (Note: You must complete the application form first. After the application form is completed, you will be able to complete the mentor confirmation task.)
  9. Click on the "January 2021 Honors EXCEL Program Application." 
  10. Complete the application form. Please note: you can scroll to the bottom of the page and save your application at any time by clicking the "Save & Continue Editing" button. It is recommended that you draft your essays in a word processor (such as Microsoft Word, Notepad or Google Docs) before adding them to your application.
  11. Use the application form as a space to outline your project. Answer questions thoroughly and honestly. Note character limits.
  12. When you have completed your application, click "Mark as Complete." Note: Marking your application as complete is not the same as submitting it. Please continue to follow the instructions below to ensure your application is submitted properly. 
  13. If your GPA is below 3.4, you will be required to obtain a letter of recommendation.

    - Your recommender should be your academic advisor or another WVU faculty or staff member who can vouch for your ability to complete your project or speak to any extenuating circumstances which may have impacted your GPA.

    - Use the step titled "Request GPA Recommendation" to identify a recommender. This person will receive an email to submit a letter of recommendation.
  14. All students must obtain formal confirmation from their project mentors before submitting their application.

    - Select the task "Request Mentor Confirmation." Click "Request a Recommendation" and identify your project mentor, who will support you throughout your Honors EXCEL project.

    - The person you identify will receive an email with instructions on how to submit their confirmation.

    - You cannot mark this task as complete until the confirmation form has been submitted by your mentor. You will not lose your progress by logging out at this time. Note that your application is not yet finished at this point!
  15. After your mentor has submitted their confirmation, you will receive an email confirming that you can go back to finalize and submit your application.
  16. Log back in to your application on the WVU Honors College application portal to mark the remaining task as complete. 
  17. Click the "Review & Submit" button. Review your application to check for any typos or missing information.
  18. When you are satisfied with your application, click “Submit Your Application.”
  19. Congratulations! Your application has now been submitted.
  20. If you click “Go to My Applications,” you can see your current application status. The application status link is: You can check the application status link at any time.