Elizabeth Morrissy Honors Program

Morrissy Scholars are intellectually curious honor students, active learners and global citizens.

Named in honor of Elizabeth Morrissy, Ph.D., a distinguished professor of history, political science and economics at Notre Dame for 40 years, the Honors Program provides opportunities for students to experience the kind of excitement in learning that Dr. Morrissy inspired.

The program offers both general education and interdisciplinary seminars. It supports learning through experience with internships, service learning, directed research and honors conference presentations.

Morrissy Scholars embrace many exclusive opportunities—from studying and gathering in the charming, cozy Morrissy House to visiting our sister college in Tokyo.

The Otenasek House

The Otenasek House of the Morrissy Honors Program provides welcoming study areas, a seminar room for classes as well as individual and group activities, and a comfortable lounge where students interact with other honors students and faculty.

Tour the Otenasek House

Activities and Events

  • Financial support for two-week study tours abroad
  • Director’s Night Out: dinner and activity for incoming students with the Honors Program director
  • Participation in national, regional and Maryland honors conferences. The Elizabeth Morrissy Honors Program has hosted the Maryland Collegiate Honors Conference, and Morrissy Scholars have participated in honors
    conferences in New Orleans; Chicago; Philadelphia; Pittsburgh; St. Louis; Washington, D.C.; Providence, RI; and Portland, ME
  • Dinners and other social activities in the Morrissy Honors House
  • Cultural outings in Baltimore: Center Stage, Baltimore Symphony, Baltimore Opera, Walters Art Gallery, among others
  • Short-term exchange program with Aoyama Gakuin Women's College in Tokyo

Program Benefits

  1. Participants receive Notre Dame’s largest and most prestigious merit scholarships.
  2. Honors courses are designated on student transcripts.
  3. “Morrissy Scholar” is noted on transcripts and at Commencement (for those who complete the required 18 credits of honors courses).
  4. Scholars are recognized publicly at Notre Dame’s annual fall Honors Convocation.
  5. The Morrissy Honors Club, with student officers elected annually, works with the director to plan activities.
  6. Students may have opportunities to present outstanding research papers and posters at the spring research symposium at Notre Dame and at state, regional and national honors conferences.
  7. Exclusive off-campus activities enrich students’ Notre Dame honors education.
  8. The Morrissy Honors Wing in Doyle Residence Hall provides peer mentoring and expands the Morrissy experience to residence life.

Morrissy Requirements

  • Students must maintain a 3.3 overall average and a B average in honors courses.
  • Honors courses cannot be taken on a pass/fail basis.
  • Students must register for at least one honors course per year.
  • Scholars must take six honors courses (18 credits) to complete the program.
  • The director reviews the records of Morrissy scholars at the end of each spring semester.
  • Those who are enrolled in “3/2” programs with other institutions must complete a minimum of 15 honors credits.
  • Three credits of honors work may be taken as an independent study with the approval of the faculty member concerned and the Morrissy director.
  • A semester or year of study abroad satisfies 3 credits (one course) of honors work.
  • Morrissy scholars are expected to participate in at least six Morrissy-sponsored events annually.

Become a Morrissy Scholar


Current and prospective Notre Dame of Maryland University students may apply to the Morrissy Honors Program by completing the online form.

Apply Now

A faculty committee reviews the records of first-year students and transfer students to prepare a cohort of potential scholars.


Each semester, the director of the Morrissy Program seeks recommendations from the faculty. The director also asks students to apply through self-nomination.

Ordinarily, the honors cohort comprises 15 percent to 20 percent of each class.

Honors Councils

The University maintains membership in the National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC), the Northeast Regional Honors Conference (NE-NCHC) and the Maryland Collegiate Honors Council (MCHC).

Contact Us

Jeana DelRosso
Professor of English
Program Director