Honors Program

Academic opportunities at JCC

The Honors program at Jamestown Community College provides stimulating, honors-designated courses, events, and fieldwork projects for select student participants.

Honors program perks

  • Complete advising and registration one week prior to general registration, so you’ll get your first selection of courses.
  • Receive special library privileges.
  • Be recognized at the annual Honors reception and commencement after completing the program.
  • Earn an honors citation in your academic transcript after completing the program.

More information

Eligibility requirements

If you are enrolling at JCC for the first time with fewer than 12 college credits, you must have a high school grade point average of 90% or better and be eligible to take MAT 1540.

If you have 12 or more college credits, you must have a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or better and be eligible to take MAT 1540.

Math placement testing must be completed before you can be considered for the Honors Program.

To earn the honors citation, you must:

  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better
  • Complete one three-credit Honors Symposium course offered each fall semester
  • Complete two one-credit project-based Honors courses

You are encouraged to enroll in one honors designated course each semester. If you do not enroll in an honors course for two or more consecutive semesters (excluding summer), you will no longer be considered an Honors program participant and will forfeit program benefits.

Program coursework

Honors courses provide additional challenges, an emphasis on writing and critical thinking skills, and give you the chance to explore an issue in greater depth.

To earn JCC’s honors citation students must successfully complete a three-credit hour honors symposium course as well as two one-credit hour honors project courses prior to graduation.

Honors Symposium Course

The symposium course allows students to approach a global topic from diverse perspectives. Students are encourage to complete their honors symposium course during their first fall semester of enrollment.

The fall 2020 honors symposium course is:​

Artificial Intelligence, Robots, and Black Swans - the Economic, Social, Business, and Lifestyle Impacts of Technological Change: Students will use historical research to determine the impact of previous major technological changes, such as the introduction of the automobile and the internet, on then existing industries and lifestyles, and determine through individual research current attitudes regarding artificial intelligence and robots. Students will attempt to create autonomous robots to better understand the current challenges involved in developing robots, self-driving vehicles, and other devices controlled by artificial intelligence. Students will be expected to offer plans to ease this technology into society with minimal disruptions and displacements utilizing timelines and information from their research. Prerequisite/corequisite: ENG 1510.

  • Jamestown: 5136 - CSC 7514 3 - A.I. Robots & Black Swans - Pratt, J. - 11-11:50 a.m. - M/W/F in HULT 163 ITV
  • Olean: 5137 - CSC 7514 3 - A.I. Robots & Black Swans - Pratt, J. - 11-11:50 a.m. - M/W/F in COLL 227 ITV
  • Dunkirk: 5138 - CSC 7514 3 - A.I. Robots & Black Swans - Pratt, J. - 11-11:50 a.m. - M/W/F in NCTC 116 ITV

Honors Project-Based Courses

Honors students are required to successfully complete two one-credit, project-based honors courses which are related to courses in which they are currently enrolled or have recently completed. Each project must include some form of applied learning: fieldwork, internship, service learning, innovative/ creative project, and/or undergraduate research. After registering, the students will be guided by the honors program coordinator and their advisors to identify a course to which to link the project and a faculty instructor.

Students and instructors are advised to complete learning contracts for fall semester project-based courses by September 23, 2020.

New and continuing honors students may register for these honors project courses:

  • 4418 - INT 2015 1 - HONORS Project I - Cooper, L.
  • 4419 - INT 2515 1 - HONORS Project II - Cooper, L.

Honors students are required to successfully complete both of these one-credit project-based honors courses prior to graduation. These courses are linked with courses in which students are currently enrolled or have recently completed and with the same instructor.

Each project-based honors course must include:

  • 45 hours of applied learning (such as fieldwork, internship, service learning, innovative/creative project, and/or undergraduate research)
  • An 8-10 page researched essay
  • A public presentation/demonstration of the project (may take place within a campus or community setting and may include Scholars Day presentations)

If you are a faculty member who has agreed to work with an honors student to complete a project-based course, please select the link listed under your division to fill out the required e-contract and begin the process.

Ideas for project-based honors courses

Here are suggestions to help you create your honors project. While these projects may have been completed by previous honors students, they are offered here only to help you design a project that can be tailored to your individual interests and learning goals and should be adapted to fit the specific course and course level.


  • Explore how the visual arts in general or a particular medium that is the focus of the course (graphic design, painting, ceramics, photography, etc.) has been used to convey the messages of a particular societal issue (racism, poverty, LGBTQ concerns, the environment). Conduct an interview with at least one artist who has communicated through art. Create an original work of art that reflects your particular message.


  • Through interviews and other forms of primary research, explore Native land use in our region as you seek answers to these questions: How has land use changed for Native people, especially in modern times? What impact did projects like the Kinzua Dam have on land use? Do people still have access to sacred sites, traditional foods, and medicinal plants? How does this change their physical, spiritual, and mental health and their perceptions of wellness and illness? What does this do for their perceptions of community and identity?
  • Through interviews and other forms of primary research, choose another culture and compare and contrast how it treats people who are transsexual or transgendered, as compared to the United States. Are there rituals to move people from one sex/gender category to another? What place is occupied by “trans”people in these cultures? How do we cope in the United States? Why is this significant? What are the consequences?


  • Select one immunological disease and study it in-depth including reading and interpreting primary literature and reviewing articles. Identify a technological approach that could be used to create a treatment strategy and identify the potential pitfalls associated with the technology as well as the ethical issues that may surface.
  • Engage in an internship with a certified anesthesiologist that allows you to 1) observe various techniques and procedures performed by a certified anesthesiologist, 2) calculate medication doses for patients (simulated), 3) Develop a plan for time management under the tight time requirements for addressing the needs of multiple patients, and 4) become aware of the many medications used in the field of anesthesiology and their purposes and potential interactions with other medications and with each other.
  • Focusing on the Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy, Audubon, Canticle Farm, or the Roger Tory Peterson Institute, conduct interviews and other forms of primary source research to seek answers to these questions: What are some of the major environmental issues these groups are trying to address? What challenges are unique to our region? How do those issues give us insight to our negative impact on the environment? You can consider issues such as pollution, waste, farm/lawn runoff, soil depletion, habitat destruction, the balance of “uses” in land management, disappearing wildlife and plants, the ethical question of whether plants and animals have the “right” to occupy land and remain unmolested, undeveloped, etc.
  • Plan a “locovore” food banquet, using only foods that are grown locally and seasonally appropriate OR design a plan for eating locally year round. This project may consider the cost of growing and consuming food by examining both the obvious costs and the hidden costs of farming and distribution. Other topics could include farm subsidies, worker wages and health care, issues of transportation in a rural community, and costs or benefits to the consumer, including health. Other environmental factors to consider could be pesticide usage vs. organic forming and water usage issues. Projects should consider obstacles and identify possible solutions.
  • The student will complete four case studies that focus on four specific disease states including background information on the disease state, general nutrition and medical recommendations for the disease state, and specific individualized nutrition recommendations for the patient in the case study using appropriate calculations such as Estimated Energy Requirements (EER) using given anthropometric values, the Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Range (AMDR) for Macronutrients, other age appropriate Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI’s) for nutrients involved in the disease state, as well as physical activity recommendations as appropriate. The project should draw upon at least two of the disciplines represented in the class (nutrition, biology, chemistry, wellness, anatomy and physiology, life cycle, and physical activity), though the project can, of course, include information from other disciplines as well.
  • Honors projects may be linked to local naturalists, foresters, field biologists, organic farmers, or others; involve the development of botanical inventories at key wetlands, forests, meadows, or other sites; provide special assistance with our Science Center green roof or JCC’s Tree Campus USA program, involve research into critical parasites of trees such as the emerald ash borer and beech blight, or create a self-guided interpretive booklet.

Business/Global Studies

  • Identify a company within our region that is owned by a larger company outside of the USA and/or does significant business with customers outside of the USA. Conduct preliminary research online to become familiar with the company and then conduct an in-person interview with at least one representative of the company. The focus of your research, interview, and the resulting paper and presentation will vary with the course topic, but could include:
    • Variations among accounting practices across the globe
    • Global marketing strategies
    • The most desirable skills for employees of global businesses
    • The current climate for international business – changes in recent years
    • Cross-cultural challenges
  • Identify independently-owned regional businesses. Conduct preliminary research online to become familiar with the businesses and then conduct an in-person interview with at least one representative of each business. The focus of your research, interview, and the resulting paper and presentation will vary with the course topic, but could include:
    • The challenges of small business ownership – in the start-up phase or in the mature business phase
    • Strategies for competing with larger businesses
    • The challenges of business franchising
    • The impact of emerging technologies on small businesses


  • While completing an internship with a local business/agency, students will research current social media theories and the complex nature of a social media platform and present their findings at the conclusion of the semester.
  • Students will produce a 7-20-minute informative video documentary that utilizes visual and auditory rhetoric to provoke an emotional and ethical response. The project will include pre-production (treatment, general script, gear list), production, and post-production (editing and final presentation).

Criminal Justice

  • The student will conduct a study of bloodstain pattern analysis (BPA) with two outcomes at the culmination of the study:
    • A research paper of 8-10 pages covering the origins/history of BPA as well as explaining common/standardized terms as defined by the Scientific Working Group on Bloodstain Pattern Analysis (SWGSTAIN)
    • A large display poster presenting common blood spatters and patterns complete with names, descriptions, and photographs.
  • The poster will be mutually beneficial as it will become a teaching aid for JCC forensic students, the Forensic Investigation Team, Sheriff’s Academy recruits, and Correction Academy recruits.


  • Students will do an economic analysis of a current affairs issue that is of particular interest to them, present multiple perspectives of the issue, and use critical thinking skills to offer a possible solution/strategy based on economic theory.


  • Honors students will be introduced to and apply techniques of writing pedagogy; mastery will be demonstrated via the development and delivery of mini-lessons in small group and whole class settings. They will also become familiar with a variety of composing and documenting conventions in addition to MLA. Finally, each major assignment will be altered to include the additional requirement of introducing additional or competing perspectives.
  • Honors students will coordinate all aspects of a public performance of prose or poetic works created by other students including the assessment of works submitted for inclusion.


  • Honors students will read a book-length primary source, write a response, and present that response to the class.
  • Honors students will independently locate local primary historical sources, write a paper that describes the sources and places them in a historical context, and then share sources with the class in a short presentation (minimum 5 minutes, maximum 10). They will explain how they found the sources, why they chose them, and lead the class in a brief discussion of what the sources shows about local and/or American history. For example, primary source could be a newspaper article from one of the 19th century newspapers available on microfilm at local libraries, a documented historical artifact in the collection of a local museum (the student would share a photo and the artifact's provenance with the class), or an oral history interview of a local resident about a particular past experience.


  • Honors students will complete an in-depth lab assignments that includes researching topics not covered in class using other statistics textbooks, information from the United States Census, and the Journal of the American Statistical Association.

Occupational Therapy Assistant

  • Honors students will collaborate with OT staff at a local agency to research and write articles focusing on adaptive technologies to be shared via a digital newsletter that the student will edit, promote, and distribute. Newsletter content may include articles in “digest” form gleaned from research studies and professional journals as well as from interviews with local providers.


  • Honors students will produce a well-crafted research proposal using a format provided to interested students by the instructor. Sections will include a research question, significant literature review, hypothesis, method, analytic strategy, and expected results. Students will present their research proposals to a mock Institutional Review Board.

Social Sciences/Human Services

  • Focusing on Joint Neighborhood Project, St. Susan’s Soup Kitchen, or the Warming House (Olean), conduct interviews and other forms of primary research to seek answers to these questions: What sort of processes do people go through to get assistance and how do they qualify? What obstacles or barriers do they face? Consider what the cash equivalent would be to shop for a week for a family of four with food stamps. What kinds of food can be purchased? How do you rate them in terms of freshness and nutrition?  How do you think this system helps or hinders people in terms of their health and therefore, their ability to be productive each day? Are certain populations more vulnerable than others? How do our aid and food systems work for or against the poor? What are the issues of transportation and time involved? How could food delivery to the poor be improved? How does the media depict the poor in our country? How do issues of poverty affect all of us? What challenges are unique to our region?
  • Honors students will produce a well-crafted research proposal using a format provided to interested students by the instructor. Sections will include a research question, literature review, hypothesis, method, analytic strategy, and expected results. Students will present their research proposal to a mock Institutional Review Board.


  • The student will participate as a crew member in this semester’s musical production in the Scharmann Theatre. During this time, the student will read and evaluate the script, take notes regarding stage directions and cues, and help ensure a smooth run of the show, all while taking note of the complexities and nuances of theater rehearsals and acting techniques. The student will have the opportunity to assist both members of the community and professionals involved in making the show. The student’s research paper will discuss the importance of the arts on a large scale and within communities.
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