Dean's Excellence Awards for Undergraduate Students

Proposals for Dean’s Excellence Awards for Undergraduate Students

Prior to 2009, UTM had only one decanally administered and adjudicated award for undergraduate academic excellence: the Dean’s Essay Prize.  The Dean struck a committee in 2009 to explore possibilities for other awards to recognize the range of academic projects and avenues that our students can pursue as part of their coursework and identified the following three or four awards.  Please note that, in each case, nominations must be reviewed by the Chair/Director who will decide which will be submitted to the Dean.  In each category, the department can nominate up to four pieces of work per year.

Awards for Research Excellence & Excellence in Experiential Learning

These categories are combined due to overlap in past submission pools, as described below. There may be two awards given in this category on the basis of projects related to:

  1. Research and  Research-Intensive courses (i.e. the Research Opportunity Program; Senior Project Classes; Independent Research Courses, Advanced Laboratory Courses, etc.), and
  2. Experiential Learning opportunities/courses (i.e. Academic Internships, Community Engaged Service Learning, Practica, Work-Integrated Learning, Field Courses, and other unique faculty-supervised experiences).

Nominations will be reviewed on the basis of independence, rigour, creativity, overall performance of the student, intellectual/professional growth, distinguished contribution to the community or placement site, reflection on activities, research methods/outcomes, etc. The nomination package should include:

  • A statement from the instructor outlining their rationale for the nomination (on the application form)
  • A statement from the student outlining the most important aspects of their project/work (no more than 1 page).
  • Any additional pertinent information, including papers written by the student for the project and/or a chronicle of the student’s activities
  • If the student was placed with the community, the package should include:
    • a statement from the community partner and/or placement supervisor
    • a reflection piece
    • any other records that capture how the performance of the student was exceptional

Nomination packages in this category can include and are not limited to:

  • Papers/Research Journals
  • Research and Practical Papers
  • Additional Reflection Pieces
  • Website creation
  • Photographic journaling
  • Documented visual displays

These award categories have been combined because often students are engaged in an experiential learning opportunity that involves research activities and vice-versa.  The purpose of this combined category is to allow nominators and nominees to be more expressive in their submissions allowing room for overlap.

Writing Excellence Award

To be awarded to a student on the basis of writing excellence in a course. Papers of 2000 words or more on any subject are eligible, including but not limited to critical essays, research papers, and theses. Creative writing is not eligible but will be considered for a separate award (see below).

The nomination package should include:

  • A statement from the instructor outlining their rationale for the nomination (on the application form)
  • The writing piece being nominated

Award for Excellence in Creative Activity

To be awarded to a student who has exhibited excellence in creative activities in their programs, including, but not limited to the production of first-rate visual or digital art or media, high achievement in the dramatic arts (i.e. directing, acting), and creative writing.

The nomination package should include:

  • A statement from the instructor outlining their rationale for the nomination (on the application form)
  • A sample of the student’s work; for dynamic work, i.e. performances or digital media, a sample of the work of not more than 10 minutes should be submitted.

The deadline for submissions of nominations will be:

February 24, 2021: for summer 2020 and fall 2020 courses

May 12, 2021: for winter 2021 and “Y” courses.

Notification of the awards will be sent at the end of the winter term. Awards will be presented at a ceremony around the time of graduation and will include an award of $500 each, awarded through ROSI/ACORN.