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Distinguished Graduate Award


The Distinguished Graduate Award recognizes exceptional graduates who have set themselves apart by making significant contributions to our nation and/or their communities, and who have demonstrated a strong interest in supporting a lifetime of military or public service. This award honors graduates whose outstanding character, accomplishments, and service embody the characteristics and spirit of the university’s mission of service and leadership in our diverse global society. Distinguished graduates should elevate the reputation and the standing of the university and provide an inspirational example to all graduates of the standards that we value and of the abilities that have made our country and society great.

Selection Criteria:

In order to be considered for nomination of this award, you should:

  • Make a distinguished achievement or contribution to our nation and/or their community.
  • Impact the profession and/or community in which he/she has been active.
  • Achieve statewide recognition or leadership at the national, regional, or state level.
  • Provide an inspirational example to all graduates.
  • Accomplish the criteria during academic tenure at the university and/or after graduation.

Nomination Process

  • Nominees may be self-nominated, nominated by another graduate, a member of the faculty or staff, or another person outside the university who knows the nominee and the university well.
  • Nominees will be notified of their nomination and encouraged to apply for the award.
  • Award may, but will not necessarily, be awarded annually.

Required Documentation:

All materials are to be submitted in one complete packet.  Late or incomplete submissions will not be considered.

  • A cover page including your name, student ID, degree completed, contact information, and graduation date.
  • One letter of recommendation from a faculty member or supervisor who knows you well. The letter should specifically address how you meet the requirements for the award. You may want to give your recommendation writer a brief summary of the award.
  • An original essay of no more than 1,000 words that outlines why you are an exceptional candidate for the award including concrete examples of how you meet each of the requirements for this award.
    • Answers questions such as: In what ways have your achievements been truly extraordinary? How have you showed interest in supporting a lifetime of military or public service?
  • Evidence that you received state or national recognition for significant achievements in your chosen field and an additional letter of support/recommendation.
  • Your current professional resume.
  • Additional information such as news articles, recognition awards, and volunteer service that supports the nominations are encouraged, but not required.

Contact The Office of Alumni Affairs if you have questions about collecting supporting documentation during the nomination process.


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