Honors Leadership Academy

The Honors Leadership Academy was established in the fall of 2018, and connects incoming Honors College freshmen to leadership learning and civic engagement in our local community.  Students are selected to apply for this new initiative based on excellent high school leadership experiences.  

Honors Leadership Academy Students standing outside of the Haven of Portage County


Several of the benefits of the Honors Leadership Academy include:

  • Connecting early with other honors peer leaders and getting to know your local college community
  • Earn 3 honors credits for Honors Leadership Academy during your first year (1 credit in fall and 2 credits in spring) to count towards your required 24 honors credits for graduation
  • Close interaction and networking with the Honors College staff and Residence Services staff
  • Priority to live in Stopher-Johnson, Clark Hall, or Centennial Court B Honors College Living-Learning Community (if you plan to live on campus)
  • Integrating your major studies with local opportunities to help others
  • Opportunities to assist the Honors College in recruiting prospective student 


HLA Members Wrapping Gifts

The H​onors Leadership Academy admits approximately 16 students each academic year and is highly selective. Invitations for applying to the Honors Leadership Academy are sent out in the spring prior to the first fall semester of the incoming class at Kent State University. 

For more information please contact Honors Leadership Academy coordinator Erin Ahrens (eahrens@kent.edu)   or Stacey Spearman (sspearm2@kent.edu).


 Honors Leadership Academy Student Testimonials:

HLA was the first push I needed to find my purpose and place here at Kent.  This program fostered my involvement and connection to Kent State as a whole.  I would not be the student leader I am today without this class.
                              -Abigail, Honors Leadership Academy Student

I really enjoyed moving in early and feeling like I had a built-in supportive community to help navigate Freshman year. I really enjoyed our field trips and always looked forward to the class. HLA made me reflect on my leadership style in a productive and enjoyable way, and I'm so glad to have been part of this community.
                              -Mallory, Honors Leadership Academy Student


I liked how small the class was because we all got to know one another very well and each other's strengths as leaders. I also liked how much we spent reflecting on our own attributes and qualities as leaders. Being self-aware is such a vital life skill.
                              -Lillian, Honors Leadership Academy Student


I loved the class content. I know in the next couple of years the students got to do a philanthropy project which I love. I wish we would've done that, but I am glad to see if happening now! 
                               -Kaelee, Honors Leadership Academy Student


HLA was truly the best part of my freshman year, and I cannot wait to see how the program continues to positively impact the lives of KSU freshmen for years to come.
                               -Nicolas, Honors Leadership Academy Student


I am generally a very introverted person unless I am comfortable with the group. HLA gave me the confidence to be more outgoing and engaged during my freshman year of college. I learned so mucha bout Kent State becacuse of it and I would not have utilized the resources we learned about because of it. 
                              -Hailey, Honors Leadership Academy Student