Program Fee Rationale and Use

All members of Western Michigan University's Lee Honors College are charged a $100 per-semester fee. Students should know why and how the college uses the money. In implementing the fee in 2009, the college conducted focus groups with students and learned the following:

  • Students wanted not only challenging courses, but also more classes that are small in size and taught by experienced, knowledgeable instructors who inspire discussion, engagement, debate and a passion for learning.
  • Students wanted additional honors classes to qualify for general education credit, and the addition of more lower and upper level honors courses in their major(s) and minor(s).
  • Students wanted more classes to be exclusive to honors students to enable instructors to respond to the honors student's desire for a collaborative intellectual experience.
  • Students wanted more financial support for study abroad, field trips and additional opportunities to earn scholarships for research and creative activities that support their classroom experience.
  • Students wanted courses and activities that prepare them for employment or graduate education.

How we use the dollars

The funds generated by the program fee are and will be used exclusively to enhance your academic experience at the Lee Honors College. Specifically, we use the funds to achieve the expressed aims of the five priorities above. Authorization to disperse funds from this account requires the approval of the dean. Categories of items that can be funded by the program fee include:

  • Instructor fees paid to academic departments to secure honors courses and qualified instructors;
  • Instructor fees for innovative courses designed specifically by the honors college;
  • Lee Honors College sponsored co-curricular activities as approved by the dean such as books for the common read, guest speakers, field trips, tickets to special University events, and refreshments for honors college sponsored events;
  • Support for study abroad, Study in the States, thesis research and attendance at conferences.

As we continue our efforts to offer students the best honors experience possible, it is important that we receive feedback on how these funds are spent along with ideas for further enhancing honors education at WMU. 

A graph chart showing the usage of the program fee. Detailed description follows.

Program fee breakdown

  • $221,743.38 Instructional
  • $60,829.51 Study in the States
  • $18,825.87% PSST Costs and Compensation
  • $18,139.28 Lyceum Lecture Series
  • $10,173.21 Honors College Vans
  • $7,325.10 Special Events
  • $4,029.91 Metropolitan Series
  • $3,889.57 Miscellaneous
  • $2,688.80 Awards
  • $1,050.78 Mix-it-Up
  • $523.39 Coffee, etc.