Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State

Inspiring a love of learning through opportunity, community and family. In the fall of 1992, former YSU President Leslie H.

Cochran announced the commitment of Youngstown State University to a new University Scholars Program. The Program is based on the premise that academic excellence deserves to be recognized on a par with achievement in the highest areas of human activity, and that this recognition should take the form of an award of full tuition, room and board and a book voucher for four years for those who mainta

Operating as usual


Hello Honors Fok! There is a special event taking place today and we could use your help!

The Warren city police department is looking for YSU volunteers to aid them in shopping for toys at Cortland Walmart with the children and a cop.
We are looking for 30 volunteers from 5:30 - 7:30 PM December 6th!

If you are interested please sign up here:


Thank you to honors student Avinab De, Dr. Banks, and Eastern Ohio Area Health Education Center for tonight’s talk. Bringing student ideas and learning opportunities to life through collaboration! 🩺🧬🐧

Eastern Ohio AHEC Scholar and Sokolov Honors College at YSU student Avinab De had an idea. So he collaborated with Eastern Ohio AHEC and the Sokolov Honors College to invite Dr. Virginia (Dee) Banks to speak to students about being an infectious disease specialist, historical implications for current and future healthcare practice, and what the public can do to curb the spread of infectious diseases.

Her best advice to everyone:
Wear a mask
Get vaccinated
Avoid large gatherings.

Thank you, Dr. Banks, for always supporting our students and helping us understand how the practices of the past help us formulate current and future practices.

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 11/16/2023

Deck the halls with vibrant hues! The YSU Honors Trustees are thrilled to present their Poinsettia Sale just in time for the holidays! Choose from four sizes and four festive colors, ranging from $5 to $35. Orders are due by 5:00 pm on Nov 19th. Pickup at Fok Hall or opt for home delivery (within 25 miles of YSU) for an extra $10. Don’t miss out – place your order now for a touch of holiday cheer! 🎄🌺🐧

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 11/15/2023

Congratulations to all the students who presented at the National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) conference in Chicago last week and to all involved in producing our With Honors magazine, which earned a second place award at NCHC! This marks the second time the student-designed publication has been recognized nationally.

Kudos to all for sharing your scholarly work at this academic conference...and thanks to honors alum Jasmine Smyles for spending time with the students while we were in town!

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 11/10/2023

"We don't know them all, but we owe them all." - Unknown Author

This Veterans Day 🇺🇸, we honor the men and women who have served our country; many of whom have paid the ultimate sacrifice in pursuit of our freedom. This fall, some of our students at the Sokolov Honors College served alongside local veterans for a cleanup at the Southside War Memorial in Youngstown.

Comment below to honor or thank a veteran in your life!


Join the Sokolov Honors College in supporting the American Heart Association during the month of giving!

Purchase honors merchandise to support this important cause. Proceeds will go toward the American Heart Association to fund research to prevent heart disease and stroke and provides education and support to those affected by these conditions.

The fundraiser ends on November 20th. Students can pick up their items at Fok Hall or order shipping with a fee. Check the link below for more information:



YSU-BaccMed and honors pre-med students recently had a chance to attend OMED to learn about careers in medicine and talk with current medical school students. The YSU-BaccMed program is currently accepting applications! High school seniors should apply by November 15 🩺🌡🐧

Want to learn more about our offerings? Sign up for tonight's Conversation with YSU-BaccMed to hear from faculty, staff, and current students.


The Sokolov Honors College is pairing with community partner, the American Heart Association, and the Go Red for Women Campaign. Through Go Red for Women, the American Heart Association is working in communities around the world so that women can learn, understand, and take action against health risks. The American Heart Association is grateful for the millions of people, like you, who have worked relentlessly to invest in life-saving research and build healthier communities. Please consider helping us reach our goal by contributing to the link provided above! 🐧❤️

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 10/30/2023

Honors students had several recent opportunities to present their scholarly work - Sara Khan shared her research on the autism home-school connection to an audience of AHEC Scholars, Julie Centofanti and Crystal Lin presented the work of the YSU Transcribing Club at the Lit Youngstown conference, and Jason Hess shared his journey to becoming a Truman Scholar with fellow honors students. Thank you for sharing your scholarship with others!

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 10/24/2023

Thank you, Dr. Nancy Landgraff PT, PhD and the YSU DPT students who throughout this week are coming to first year honors classrooms and training students on hands only CPR. Thanks also to our community partner, the American Heart Association and Courtney Lockshaw, for collaborating in educating our students on this potentially life-saving technique.


Hello honors folk! Check out the Wi3DP x YSU STEM Alumni Networking Mixer open for students and professionals. Please register by Monday, October 23rd, with the link provided in the pamphlet! 🐧


Dear Honors Fok, It’s alive! The Fall Fok Festival is alive! Come join us for our spooktacular Halloween event. Enjoy an evening of music, pumpkin painting, and snacks here at Fok Hall. We cannot wait to see you there! 🧛🏻‍♂️🧙‍♀️👻

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 10/10/2023

Honors students considering careers as physicians had an opportunity to interact with Dr. Amy Acton during a special session last week. The experience was inspirational for many…

“She is one of the reasons I decided being a doctor was a possibility for me. I've heard her speak before and we come from similar backgrounds. Hearing her speak again at this lecture taught me that resilience always paves a way.”

“No matter what your background is, if you work hard you can achieve your dreams.”

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 10/03/2023

Thank you to everyone who came out and participated in the third annual MALAINA carnival! Students shared their food, music, and clothing from regions around the world. It was lovely to see all of the smiling faces and learning about other cultures!


Come this Sunday to The Professors in Concert, a fundraiser for scholarships! Support our amazing faculty: Brian Bonhomme, Matt O'Mansky, and Ron Shaklee!


Honors plays integral role in lifelong learning through the lens of three alums who contributed to the honors world through employment opportunities and contributions to an honors academic journal…thank you to Matt Vansuch, Mary Beth Messner, and Michelle Panuccio.

Stories by Celeste Kapalin, HC29, and Madison James, HC30

Pages designed by Avery Jones


Each of us needs all of us...

YSU’s first Truman Scholar Jason Hess returned to his alma mater Wilmington High School to inspire the next generation of students. During a special ceremony, Hess and the Wilmington Area School District were honored for the Truman achievement.

Jacqueline Thompson, a 2014 Wilmington High School graduate, who serves as chief of staff for Pennsylvania’s 9th District State Rep. Marla Brown, presented two citations from Brown in honor of Hess and the school district. YSU also presented a certificate to the school.

"There are those students who stand out to you and leave an indelible mark and remind you why you chose the field of education and mentorship."

~Brandon Phillian, director of educational services and head football coach, who Hess serves alongside on the field as a volunteer coach.


We are gearing up for our annual Sokolov Honors College open house! All prospective students at any point in the college seeking journey are welcome. Feel free to share with anyone who may be interested 🐧

Sokolov Honors College Open House set for Oct. 13 The Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State University hosts prospective honors and YSU-BaccMed students at the fall open house Friday, Oct. 13 on campus. The annual event gives high school students, interested in all majors, a chance to hear from current Honors students, staff and faculty; tour....

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 09/21/2023

The Sokolov Honors College would like to say a special thank you to some of our teaching assistants, student assistants, and student staff that worked so hard here during the summer. We love and appreciate all of the hard work our students bring to the table every single day. Thank you for your constant dedication! ❤️

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 09/20/2023

Congratulations to honors student Natalie Dando who was officially sworn in as a student trustee on the YSU Board of Trustees this morning! Natalie and fellow student trustee Julie Centofanti also spoke about the impact of Choose Ohio First along with honors alum Emilie Brown who coordinates the program. Tita Loudtragulngam shared her experiences as an international student and golfer at YSU. Thanks to everyone for sharing your successes! 🐧

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 09/19/2023

What an amazing turnout this year for the volleyball tournament! Thanks for all of the fun memories and CONGRATS to our winners: The Cornballs!


Special honors orientation sessions give students early introduction to YSU, honors
By Hannah Werle, HC30
“A collaboration of YSU faculty, staff, students, and alums led to the success of two honors only orientation sessions in Spring 2022…The sessions are designed to help the students grow their community, form relationships with other honors students, and prepare for college life. “I wanted to help high school seniors have a positive and memorable start to their YSU experience.” - Michele Johnson.’
~Pages designed by Omega Jaricha

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 09/08/2023

“I am humbled by this honor that I don’t deserve by myself. It always takes a village.” ~Dr. Rashid Abdu

Today, the Sokolov Honors College announced the naming of the Dr. Abdu Pen Pals Program at Youngstown State University. Dr. Abdu inspired the pen pals program, which has been connecting YSU and local elementary student pen pals for more than 10 years.

Thank you to corporate sponsor Shell Polymers Monaca for investing in the lives of students, the alumni whose lives were impacted by the program who returned to join in the celebration, local educators, the many community members who turned out for the occasion, and to Dr. Abdu for being a constant source of inspiration and wisdom.

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 08/27/2023

What a perfect day for the Panerathon! Honors students, alumni, faculty, and staff helped form Team YSU! Shout out to the YSU student Red Cross Club, YSU Nursing, and all the other Penguins among us serving the community together today. Proceeds from the event benefit the Joanie Abdu Comprehensive Breast Care Center.

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 08/27/2023

Welcome to the family! What a wonderful time meeting our newest students at Ignite and Cafaro House move-in! We are so excited to officially usher in fall semester tomorrow 🐧😎


We cannot believe how fast this summer has gone by! To end our faculty spotlights and fall semester countdown, we are honored to introduce Ron Shaklee, the Professor Emeritus here at honors! Professor Shaklee was previously the former Sokolov Honors College Director. Shaklee currently assists with external scholarship competitions for students and is an adjunct honors faculty member. Thank you, Professor Shaklee, for all of your dedication and support for the honors family throughout the years! Goooooo 'Guins! 🐧❤


!LAST CALL! to order your YSU driveway painting! Prices range from $25-$75. We appreciate your support for the Honors Trustees!


By Celeste Kapalin, HC29
“Under the direction of Dr. Alexis Byers, students Lucy Allen, Justine Appolonia, Devan Miller, and Saad Yousuf spent the year working on a project titled Graph Theoretic Approach to DNA Self-Assembly. Presented at the PME conference by Allen in February and the MAA conference by Appolonia and Miller in March, their research entailed looking at creating minimal labeling for graphs that follow certain criteria.”
~Pages designed by Alaina Peccon

Photos from Valley Oaks Care Center's post 08/23/2023

Thank you Erick for sharing your musical talents with Valley Oaks Care Center residents. You delighted them with your performance! And thanks to community partner, Community Hospice, for these opportunities to engage in the community.

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 08/23/2023

Welcome to the family! This week, honors welcomes incoming students from countries near and far. Best wishes to all of our new international honors students attending orientation this week. We are so excited to learn, lead, and serve with you this year! 🐧🌏❤


Hey there, Alumni! Want to spend a day enjoying some food, friends, and football? Come join us at our University Scholars and Honors Tailgate! Use the link on the flyer to sign up, support our YSU penguins, and reconnect with community members here at honors. We cannot wait to see you all there! Go 'Guins! 🐧


Continuing on with our faculty spotlight posts, here is the amazing Alicia Prieto Langarica! Alicia is the Director of Academic Programs here at the Sokolov Honors College. She is a staple member in bridging the gap between the faculty at YSU and the honors college. Alicia is also a faculty advisor for the Bacc-Med program. Let's give a round of applause to Alicia for her abilities to build and support the honors college community! 🐧❤


The honors magazine is back after a short hiatus! Please enjoy these two wonderful pieces of work done by our students!

Coming to America
By Celeste Kapalin, HC29
“Students come from all over the world to attend Youngstown State University. In fact, honors welcomed the largest incoming class of 70 international students in Fall 2022. Two such examples are Sokolov Honors College students Anish Chougule and Omega Jaricha. From India and Zimbabwe respectively, their journeys to YSU could not be more different. They both experienced culture shock upon arrival but found that everyone at YSU and honors is kind and welcoming, which made their transition smoother, even though they both still sometimes miss the foods from home.”

From the Austrian hills to YSU
By Sho Maharjan, HC29
““Do whatever you want to do in the moment.” These are the words Katrin Hoeller has based much of her life around. It is a saying that gave her the courage to travel over 4,000 miles from her home country of Austria to the United States. Being a part of YSU’s Sokolov Honors College has been an amazing support system for her, and she is grateful there are many people to help answer her questions.”
~Pages designed by Alyssa Smith


Tafadzwa is going places! Check out her amazing experiences this summer!! 🧪🔬🐧

Our penguins have been hard at work over the summer working at their summer internships. Check out what YSU student Tafadzwa Mapiki had to say about her experience working as an Otorhinolaryngology and Radiation Oncology intern at Mayo Clinic Hospital.

"To say life changing is an understatement of how this experience has been. I am grateful to have the opportunity to work in oncology research at the number one hospital while also shadowing world class surgeons in the clinic and operating rooms. I hope to come out of this empowered to continue pursuing my dream of becoming a physician scientist."


Have you ever wanted to show your Penguin pride with a "Y" or Pete 🐧 on your driveway? The popular honors trustees fundraiser is back, but only for a limited time! Sign up now through August 27 at 5 pm! 🎨

Thanks to honors alum, Dr. Andy Morgan, who as a student designed and created the original stencils for this project when it originated in 2016!

Photos from Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State's post 08/12/2023

Honors and YSU-BaccMed student Divya Warrier presents her community-engaged research that spans two different honors seminars. Inspired by her work with Traditions Health during the Campus Community Partnerships seminar, Divya wanted to compare and contrast hospice and palliative care experiences in the US and India. She continued this work through the honors independent seminar and disseminated her findings at the Ohio Campus Compact community engagement conference. Congrats to Divya for being accepted to present!


Our next faculty spotlight is the one and only, Johnny Ware! Johnny is the Coordinator for Diversity and Recruitment here at honors. He also assists in supporting our wonderful Bacc-Med students. Thank you Johnny for always showing your genuineness and kindness towards the honors college community! 🐧❤


Future Penguins, apply now! 🐧

Great news! YSU is now on Common App 🎉 First-year applicants apply by December 1 and get your application fee waived! 2024 future penguins apply today:


Please join us in congratulating honors student Natalie Dando for being named the newest student trustee on the YSU Board of Trustees! Natalie is the 17th honors student to serve in this role since 2000. She joins honors student Julie Centofanti who is continuing to serve in the student trustee capacity this academic year. Thank you both for your service to YSU and its students!

Read more about Natalie here:

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Videos (show all)

Jason Hess - each of us needs all of us
What an amazing turnout we had at the 2022 Sokolov Honors College Open House! Thanks to our speakers, student panel, and...
Congratulations Nicholas Winsen on becoming a student athlete of the month at Sokolov Honors College!!! Please join us i...
Celebrating our Diversity with Avery Howard
Celebrating our Diversity with Rachel Sherick
Celebrating Our Diversity with Mya Blanco
Sokolov Honors College message of gratitude 2021
Introducing the TAs‼️
Dr. Jena Root’s interview with Honors! 🎶
Day 5 of Welcome Videos‼️
Welcome back parent video #3




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