Graduate Student Awards and Honors

Student Awards: Programs may nominate graduate students for the following awards given at December and May commencement ceremonies. Those individuals who received their degrees in August must be nominated for consideration during the December commencement program.

Graduate Dean's Citation:Graduate Dean's Citations are awarded at each commencement to both masters and doctoral students recommended by their departments in recognition of superior accomplishment (e.g., publications, teaching excellence, and professional service) in their graduate studies beyond the achievement of a high grade point average. Each graduate program may recommend up to 10 percent of its graduate students completing their degrees in August, December, and May of the academic year. Recommendations are to be based on the student's achievements both in their area of scholarship and outside the classroom.  Nominations may be submitted to the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for the December and May commencements.

Alice Eaves Barns Award: This award is named in honor of Mrs. Alice Eaves Barns for her many years of outstanding service as a staff member of the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies at the University of Louisville. This award recognizes a student who has displayed tenacity in the face of adversity, while attaining excellence in both the classroom and outside endeavors. The Award is given in recognition of outstanding achievement in a Master's Program. All students nominated for the Alice Eaves Barns award are automatically considered for a Graduate Dean’s Citation. Nominations may be submitted to the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for the December and May commencements.

The Virginia “Jenny” Madden Award for Graduate Student Leadership and Service: This award is named in honor of Virginia “Jenny” Madden for her many years of service to the former Graduate School, the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, the Staff  Senate, and the University of Louisville community. This award recognizes a master degree recipient who exhibits leadership through service to the recipient’s program, college, discipline, the University as a whole, and/or the community.  The nomination letter must reference the student’s contributions and the impact of those contributions on the communities served.   All students nominated for the Virginia “Jenny” Madden award are automatically considered for a Graduate Dean’s Citation.  Nominations may be submitted to the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for the December and May commencements.

Guy Stevenson Award: The Guy Stevenson Award for Excellence in Graduate Studies honors a former dean of the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies. The Stevenson Award is presented to a doctoral degree recipient who excels in scholarship, leadership, and other areas within their discipline. The recipient of this award will carry the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies banner at commencement ceremonies, and will also be a candidate for student commencement speaker. Thus, to be considered for the Stevenson Award, the student must be available for the ceremony.  All students nominated for the Guy Stevenson award are automatically considered for a Graduate Dean’s Citation.  Nominations may be submitted to the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for the December and May commencements.

John Richard Binford Memorial Award: The John Richard Binford Memorial Award honors a former chairman of the Department of Psychology. Doctoral nominees for this award will be assessed in the same manner as those students considered for the Stevenson award. The recipient of this award is not required to attend commencement.  All students nominated for the John Richard Binford Memorial award are automatically considered for a Graduate Dean’s Citation.  Nominations may be submitted to the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for the December and May commencements.

John M. Houchens Prize: The John M. Houchens Prize honors a former Registrar of the University. In the fall and spring of each year doctoral dissertations are submitted to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies for consideration. If one is deemed to be of special merit, a committee may recommend that its author be awarded the Houchens Prize. Only those students expected to complete their doctoral degree by the end of the current term (or August in the case of December consideration) are eligible for consideration of this award.  All students nominated for the John M. Houchens prize are automatically considered for a Graduate Dean’s Citation.  Nominations may be submitted to the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs for the December and May commencements.

Faculty Awards: Department chairs and directors of graduate programs and former graduate students and those graduating at the May ceremony may nominate a faculty member for the following awards given at the May ceremony:

Outstanding Mentor of a Doctoral Student

Outstanding Mentor of a Masters Student

Mentor awards honor faculty members who are deemed to excel in one-on-one mentoring of master or doctoral students to the completion of their degrees; in other words, these awards are given to faculty who successfully direct theses or dissertations, supervise students in labs, oversee students’ internships or final professional papers.

Provost’s Award for an Exemplary Director of Graduate Studies

This award honors those who have graduate or professional student advising and/or administrative duties (as DGS) designated on their annual workload assignments and who excel at the work of advising graduate students regarding program requirements, career prospects, funding possibilities, and so on.