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Creativity and Innovation Honors InstituteCultivate your mind to
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Creativity and Innovation
Honors Institute

Some colleges take a cookie-cutter approach to education. You pick a major, take the courses and get a degree. At Cornerstone University, we believe that there’s more for you. College is a vital time to tap into your utmost potential and cultivate the creative in you. We were made by a creative God—to innovate, cultivate and transform the world around us. The Creativity and Innovation Honors Institute (CIHI) at CU is designed to incorporate market-ready skills with a classical liberal arts education. You’ll graduate with problem-solving skills that are coveted by businesses across the country, and you’ll have a better understanding of what it means to be a wise Christian, employee and citizen.


Only a limited number of spots are available in CIHI each year, so don’t wait to apply!

Early application deadline: Dec. 15, 2023

Regular application deadline: March 1, 2024

Apply to CIHI

For more details about the application process, see the application timeline below.


Creativity, innovation and problem-solving are all valuable and marketable skills to have when entering the workplace. These skills give you an edge when you step into an interview after graduation.


Gain vital training in creativity and innovation.

CIHI classes place emphasis on design thinking, creative habits and innovation techniques.


Examine issues from an interdisciplinary approach.

Question the status quo and become more adept at problem-solving, a skill many employers look for.


Discuss foundational texts that have shaped Western thought.

A five-course reading plan challenges how you communicate and embody both your civic and vocational responsibility.


Graduate with a second major in creativity and innovation.

CIHI is one of the only programs of its kind in the country. The CIHI program fulfills the requirements for a second major, so you will graduate with marketable skills built into your degree.

The CIHI professors do an amazing job at integrating principles of creativity and innovation with my primary major and my future vocation.

Ruth Deem (’21)


It’s time to unleash the potential you never thought possible, and we believe you’re up for the challenge. Take a look at the resources below to find out what’s next for you.

Admission Requirements

In order to be admitted to the Creativity and Innovation Honors Institute, you must:

  • Have a 3.5 high school GPA or higher. (Transfer students must have a 3.2 GPA or higher and should not be transferring more than 12 credit hours.)
  • Complete the Honors Program Application.

If admitted into the Creativity and Innovation Honors Institute, you will be required to submit a confirmation form to secure your spot in CIHI. If you do not deposit and submit your confirmation form by May 1, your spot will be released for the waitlisted students in order of their waitlist status.

Application Timeline

Take a look at what to expect when you apply for the honors program.

  • Oct. 1 | Application opens
  • Dec. 15 | Early application deadline
  • Feb. 1 | Early admission decisions announced
  • March 1 | Regular CIHI application deadline & CIHI confirmation form deadline due for early admission recipients
  • April 1 | Decisions announced on or before April 1
  • May 1 | Tuition deposit deadline for all CIHI recipients

Honors Classes

The classes you take as a part of CIHI will be integrated into your main program of study, and many of the requirements, like CU Foundations and Old and New Testament, overlap. The other classes you should expect to take include classes centered on neuroscience, problem-solving and creative techniques.

  • IDS-103: CU Foundations I
  • IDS-104: CU Foundations II
  • REL-130: Old Testament Literature
  • REL-236: New Testament Literature
  • IDS-140: Honors I
  • IDS-141: Honors II
  • IDS-240: Honors III
  • IDS-241: Honors IV
  • IDS-340: Honors V
  • IDS-202: Creativity in the Conceptual Age
  • IDS-205: Strategies for Innovative Thought and Design
  • IDS-312: Science of Human Innovation
  • IDS-450: Creative Emergence
  • Global Studies Requirement

Five-Course Reading Plan

As an honors student, you can expect to read widely from the great books of world civilization. A five-course reading plan will guide you from books of antiquity to postmodern works. This will help you understand the human experience from a deeper and broader perspective and gain insight into the past in order to influence the future.

IDS-140 Honors I: Antiquity

Readings from Antiquity provides a foundational understanding of mythical and philosophical themes at the root of Western civilization. You’ll examine related topics, current events and ethical issues such as euthanasia, virtues, and oral history using interdisciplinary problem-solving approaches, context lectures, emerging documentation and problem-based learning.

IDS-141 Honors II: Late Antiquity/Early Medieval

Readings from Late Antiquity to Early Medieval follow the full transformation and integration of Christian civilization—good, bad, and otherwise, with a particular interest in the life of the mind and the imagination for the believer. You’ll examine related topics, current events, and ethical issues such as personality, human sexuality, and the problem of evil using interdisciplinary problem-solving approaches, context lectures, and problem-based learning.

IDS-240 Honors III: Renaissance/Enlightenment

Readings from Renaissance to Enlightenment will show the fusion of humanistic ideas and trajectories in science, politics, philosophy and theology. You’ll examine related topics, current events and ethical issues such as culture-making, ecclesiology and family systems using interdisciplinary problem-solving approaches, context lectures and problem-based learning.

IDS-241 Honors IV: Modernity

Readings from Modernity show the displacement of theistic visions by thorough-going revisions of human knowing and acting. You’ll examine related topics, current events and ethical issues such as just war, diplomacy and evolution using interdisciplinary problem-solving approaches, gamification, emerging documentation and problem-based learning.

IDS-340 Honors V: Late Modernity/Post Modernity

A seminar on the great books covering the 20th and 21st century from writers such as Churchill, Carsen and Derrida.

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