Providing an honors-level academic experience and enhanced credentials to students seeking top positions in business and related fields after graduation.

The Collat Business Honors Program goes beyond traditional business school coursework to teach leadership. An effective leader must not only possess financial and strategic skills, but also must understand how their own traits, characteristics, and behavior influence others in the organization.

“At Collat, opportunities await every day for students. Opportunities like the Business Honors Program, allow students to learn business leadership practices and participate in research that explores developing topics in their respective industries, and truly equipping them with the knowledge to become successful business leaders.”

Destiny Nelson-Miles Collat Finance Major

Students can explore their potential roles as leaders at all levels of an organization, from CEO to project team leader, and at all stages of their future careers. Students can also consider less direct aspects of leadership, such as thought leadership within an organization or industry and the attributes of good “followership.”

Honors courses provide opportunities for involvement in class discussions, exposure to relevant literature, and practice in leadership and business communications — beyond what is possible in most other courses. The program offers a shared learning experience that simulates real-world working and learning environments. It is these characteristics that distinguish the honors experience, not necessarily a greater quantity or more difficult level of work.

The program provides outstanding career development advantages and opportunities for students interested in accounting, banking, business law, entrepreneurship, finance, general management, graduate study, international business, investment management, and marketing.

In recent years, CEOs and senior executives from prominent organizations have traveled to our campus to meet with Honors Program students as part of a required course on strategic leadership. Organizations include:

  • Buffalo Rock
  • Coca-Cola Bottling United
  • Encompass Health
  • Hibbett Sports
  • Medical Properties Trust, Inc.
  • Protective Life Corp.
  • ServisFirst Bank
  • Vulcan Materials

Upon completing the program, students who are majors in a School of Business discipline receive the special designation of graduating from UAB “With Honors in Business” or “With Honors in Economics.”


Students receive a $500 scholarship, provided by the generous endowment gift of the Collat family, for each course in the program that is successfully completed.


The program consists of a three-course sequence focusing on leadership, corporate strategy, and business ethics.

  • Junior Year Spring Semester — BUS 300: Introduction to Leadership Seminar. What makes for success as a researcher and business leader?
  • Senior Year Fall Semester — BUS 496: Business Honors Seminar II. Preparation and presentation of a final research project selected by the student, advised by a faculty member.
  • Senior Year Spring Semester — BUS 495: Business Honors Seminar I. The role of leaders in setting corporate strategy.

The curriculum offers the advantages of seminar-based learning within a large university, including increased interaction with faculty members dedicated to teaching and providing valuable academic and career guidance. Courses use a discussion-driven style centering on case analysis, real-world business experiences and examples, and students' own insights and perspectives. Through a mentored program format, participants develop the high-level communication, analysis, writing, presentation, and research skills exhibited by successful business leaders.

Students will prepare a research project selected by the student and are required to participate in the UAB Undergraduate Research Expo opens a new website.

Student working on her laptop, sitting in a comfy green chair.

Admissions Requirements

UAB undergraduate students wishing to be considered for the Business Honors program must either declare a major or minor in the Collat School of Business or otherwise have demonstrated a commitment to a business education and meet the following preferred eligibility requirements: 

  • 3.5 GPA in pre-Business and Business courses
  • 3.0 overall GPA

If you do not meet these requirements, your application will be considered on an individual basis.

How to Apply

  • Students meeting eligibility requirements should complete and submit an application by November 1 of their junior year.
  • Students graduating other than immediately following a Spring semester should contact the program director about eligibility.


Collat School of Business