Best Dissertation Award


The award is given twice a year. In the Spring (which includes Summer 2020 graduates) and Fall for those who successfully defend and submit their dissertation by the deadlines. For those who finish their dissertation in the Summer semester are considered for Spring award. The recipient receives an honorarium of $1,000.

Nomination Procedure

Each Department may nominate one student. The Spring and Summer 2020 (Fall 2020 will be a later date) nomination is due by 12 pm on Friday, September 25, 2020. Submission of the application packet as one file in pdf format is electronic via email to your department graduate program adviser. The file should be titled “BestDissertation_TermYr_Lastname_FirstName”.

The electronic submission needs to include in the following order:

  1. Nomination form
  2. Brief (3-page) CV specifically listing
    • Education and employment history
    • Publications (please put an asterisk for the publications based on dissertation)
    • Honors and Awards
  3. A letter of recommendation from the dissertation advisor (max 2 pages long, single-spaced, font size 12, 1-inch margins) emphasizing the
    • The originality and importance of the research
    • Other excellence indicators, e.g., inventions, patents, job offers
    • The potential for significant contribution to the field
    • The nominee’s comparative publication record and the quality of the journals (please comment on the publications based on the nominee’s dissertation)
  4. Dissertation abstract and PDF of the papers published and submitted for journal publications (the Award Committee may request to see the entire dissertation)
  5. A double-spaced lay person summary of up to one page, including a section on the significance of the research, for use in College communications and media announcements.

Selection and Announcement of Awards

The winner will be chosen by a faculty committee appointed by the Dean annually for this purpose in consultation with the Associate Dean for Graduate Students and the Associate Dean for Research. Selection will be based on the originality and importance of the research, and the potential for the student to make a significant contribution to the discipline. The Award will be announced via College communications on or before University graduation ceremonies in December and May each year.