Honorary Degree and Commencement Speaker nominations may be submitted online. To participate in the online nomination process please click on the appropriate link below:
2011 Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degree Nomination Form
If you would prefer to mail your nomination, please write to Harry Chen, Leader, Honorary Degree Work Group, c/o Gary Derr, Vice President for Executive Operations and Chief of Staff, President’s Office, 358 Waterman Building, 85 South Prospect Street, Burlington, VT, 05405. Your letter should state how the nominee fits the nomination criteria and why the nominee should be honored in this way by the University. Please include biographical information and the nominee's current contact information.
Beginning in March 2010, the Honorary Degree Work Group started the work of identifying those candidates who best meet the following criteria and place those recommendations before the Board of Trustees at the October 2010 meeting. The Board’s practice is not to approve specific nominations, but to adopt a Resolution authorizing the President to award honorary degrees in consultation with the Work Group. It is the University President’s authority to select the commencement speaker, in consultation with the Work Group, who may also receive an honorary degree at the recommendation of the Work Group.
In conferring an honorary degree and recommending a commencement speaker, the University of Vermont has historically recognized distinction in at least one of three general areas:
Of particular interest is to identify honorary degree candidates and a commencement speaker who exemplify or reflect the University values, goals and strategic priorities.
The Work Group will also consider the following in evaluating nominees:
As this process will result in numerous highly qualified nominations and the Work Group will submit a list of 3 – 5 to the Board of Trustees, it is imperative that nominators keep their nominations confidential. In particular, we ask that nominees not be informed.
For more information contact Gary Derr, Vice President for Executive Operations and Chief of Staff, at (802) 656-8937 or by email to: Gary.Derr@uvm.edu