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Dean BlantonGreetings from the UAB Honors College! It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to the University of Alabama at Birmingham and its Honors College.

It is our mission to provide a stimulating honors learning experience that compliments your curriculum at UAB with thought-provoking academic courses, community engagement and student leadership development to meet your needs as a student and to provide you with the knowledge, skills and experiences necessary to “Set Your World On Fire.” In addition, we have recently launched the Honors Leadership Academy to equip students with resources and training on how to become an exemplary leader with the goal of graduating with an undergraduate certificate in leadership.

In the UAB Honors College, students explore a broad range of topics and issues, learn from top faculty in our university, and work closely with their fellow honors students – with many honors courses satisfying the Blazer Core Curriculum requirements. Our Honors Faculty Fellows lead opportunities for innovation and intellectual growth, and students enjoy the array of events and initiatives that connect learning to real-world experiences including public service careers, effective writing, sports and social justice, mental health, ethics, and martial arts techniques – to name a few.

Because experiential learning is one of the pillars of the Honors College experience, we empower students to make a positive impact in their community, fostering their sense of social responsibility and offering them unique experiences they will cherish long after graduation. Every year, our students contribute thousands of hours through Honors Serves opportunities and service-learning courses as they engage with the greater Birmingham and surrounding areas.

One of our top priorities is fostering our students’ own research and scholarly activities, whether through sponsored travel, like the UAB Honors College Delegation to the National Conference on Undergraduate Research opens a new website (NCUR), or personalized mentorship opportunities, such as the Presidential Honors Fellowship. Through these shared experiences, students gain unique perspectives from distinguished faculty and peers across the nation.

We take great pride in cultivating a warm and supportive learning community that offers many opportunities to connect and have fun with one another, while providing a holistic education that prepares students to become leaders not only in the community but in the world.

I look forward to seeing you on campus soon. Blaze On and Set Your World On Fire!


Shannon L. Blanton, Ph.D.
Dean of the UAB Honors College

About Dean Blanton

Dr. Shannon Lindsey Blanton is the Inaugural Dean of the UAB Honors College. She is also a professor in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, a Faculty Associate with the Institute for Human Rights, and a Senior Scientist with the Social Science and Justice Research consortium at UAB. Dr. Blanton is a past vice provost for undergraduate programs, department chair, and undergraduate coordinator and has served nationally as a facilitator for leadership development in higher education.

A graduate of Georgia College (BA), the University of Georgia (MA), and the University of South Carolina (PhD), Dr. Blanton has received research awards and professional recognitions and is a Charles E. Scheidt Faculty Fellow in Atrocity Prevention with the Institute for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention (I-GMAP), Binghamton University. She has served on editorial boards for six of the discipline’s foremost journals: International Studies Quarterly, Foreign Policy Analysis, International Interactions, International Studies Perspectives, International Studies Review, and Social Science Quarterly. Dr. Blanton has published articles on U.S. foreign policy and international relations, with a particular focus on the significance of human rights concerns in global political and economic interactions. She is also a co-author for a highly regarded textbook (most recently in its 18th edition) entitled World Politics: Trend and Transformation.

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