Importance of Awards
As academicians, we spend long hours in the pursuit of knowledge, often with too little credit for our accomplishments. At the University of Florida, we value your contribution to our mission, and want to see you get the credit you have earned. As such, the Provost’s Office has created an office dedicated to the task of assisting faculty, department chairs, and deans with the process of identifying awards, submitting nominees, and celebrating the awards won by our faculty. Creating and maintaining a culture that values the time spent on nomination letters, application packets, and ultimately celebrating accomplishments is our primary goal.
The University of Florida has outstanding faculty that have won many of the highest honors bestowed in Academia. The Office of Faculty Honors and Awards is ready to help you get the recognition that you deserve for your dedication and hard work. Both the faculty and the University benefit from the honorific awards that come with academic excellence.
Early Award Information
Many honorific awards are specifically designed for young scientists. These Young Scholar Awards often have a requirement that applicants be “no more than 5-10 years beyond their terminal degree” or even that applicants be “younger than XX years of age.” Receiving one of these early awards, such as The National Science Foundation CAREER Award, can make you better candidates for later career honors and awards.
Keep your professional CV up-to-date at all times. Many awards have known and predictable deadlines, but not all. Some are made known to an applicant/candidate on short notice, so being prepared is key.
Keep your professional society memberships current and up-to-date. Many awards are sponsored by professional societies that require that awardees be members, often for a certain length of time. Talk to others in your field, and be savvy when it comes to professional memberships.
Talk with your chair about early career awards, and be sure to talk about awards that might be appropriate for you in a few years. If you see a deadline for a competition this year, but feel that you aren’t quite ready, set a reminder in your calendar for next year. You should maintain an active dialog with your chair about honors and awards.
Many universities have created a culture where department chairs and deans proactively seek out faculty to nominate for awards, and faculty expect to be recognized for their accomplishments. As a faculty member, apply for awards where self-nomination is permitted. Also, talk about honors and awards with your colleagues, nominate a junior faculty member, and thank your nominators and letter writers. Each of these things helps to create a culture that emphasizes the importance of faculty recognition.
You can learn a lot about awards by applying for, and serving on, internal award committees. Your department and college should have awards committees, which typically need volunteers or elected individuals. Learn the ins-and-outs of faculty honors and awards. As your career progresses, think of younger colleagues and reach out to them about the importance of honorific awards, and nominate them for appropriate awards.