Paterno Fellows FAQs

Future Fellows

Paterno Fellows are a group of students in the College of the Liberal Arts who have proven themselves to be superior scholars and citizens. All admitted Paterno Fellows automatically become Schreyer Scholars and share dual enrollment in the College of the Liberal Arts and the Schreyer Honors College. 

Aspirants are first- and second-year Liberal Arts students who are currently working to fulfill the requirements to become Paterno Fellows and Schreyer Scholars.

To start, register using the Paterno Fellows application, usually during New Student Orientation (NSO), and schedule at least one honors course, CAS/ENGL 137H, for the fall semester of your first year. You must then take CAS/ENGL 138T in the spring semester. Ideally, a student should take four honors courses in the first year and three more in the second year. If you choose to aspire after your NSO date, contact the academic adviser in your intended major to ensure that you are on track to meet entry requirements; register using the Paterno Fellows application as the last step.

Aspiring Paterno Fellows must take CAS/ENGL 137H and CAS/ENGL 138T. If you have a strong academic record but have not taken these courses and other honors courses, consider entry to the Schreyer Honors College by means of the current Penn State student application. If you are accepted, you may then choose to be a Paterno Fellow. 

Typically, your academic adviser will assist you during your first scheduling session at New Student Orientation (NSO). Thereafter, you will meet with your assigned academic adviser for scheduling assistance at least once every semester. Remember that honors courses do not need to be within your major.

Your entrance into the Paterno Fellows Program and Schreyer Honors College is automatic and guaranteed provided you complete the appropriate requirements by the end of your second year at Penn State. There is no application. The PFP assistant will notify you when you have met entry requirements. 

At least one major must be in the College of the Liberal Arts. Other major(s) or minor(s) may be in other colleges. The preferred major in the PFP database will be your major of admission, the one in which you will be expected to earn your honors and write your thesis. 

Depending on the major you choose, the soonest an aspirant can be admitted is the end of the first year. Some majors have requirements that preclude completion before the end of the second year (e.g., a course that everyone takes in the spring of their second year). Students who are admitted directly to Schreyer Honors College will enter PFP as admitted Paterno Fellows. 

All Paterno Fellows aspirants have until the end of their second year to meet the entrance requirements. Unfortunately, exceptions cannot be made to extend this deadline. 

Current Fellows

Academic requirements such as total honors courses completed and grade-point average can be verified via your transcript. As you complete other requirements, update your status in the Paterno Fellows database. A notation of “Claimed Satisfied” prompts the PFP assistant to verify that the requirement has indeed been completed. 

Your assigned academic adviser is the first place to start, particularly for questions regarding courses, academic requirements, and deadlines. Email with questions related to requirements for the program. For questions that require an exception to a Paterno Fellows policy, contact the PFP Director Jeremy Engels. 

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