Faculty TipSheet External Awards and Recognition

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Faculty honorific awards amplify the visibility and recognition of your scholarly activity, increase networking and collaboration opportunities, and enhance the national and international profile of your department, college, and the entire university. There are many types of awards available depending on your work and contributions. For example, professional societies and associations sponsor discipline-based awards and honors from early career to lifetime achievement.

Thinking ahead and understanding available opportunities will help set and keep your career on an award trajectory. Here are some tips to best position yourself to be award ready.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the processes for awards and recognition available within your professional associations or societies well before the deadline. This will help you to prepare competitive nomination packages that align with eligibility and selection criteria.
  2. Maintain memberships and actively participate in your professional societies such as serving on committees or in leadership roles. Awards sponsored by professional associations and societies often require nominees to have a certain length or level of membership.
  3. Cultivate your scholarly network. Many awards require nomination letters from previous award recipients – maintaining professional relationships with colleagues and scholars within your field will ensure you have a pool of potential nominators available.
  4. Research leading scholars in your field to learn more about the awards they have earned and awards for which you might also be competitive.
  5. Think through how you might build a profile of awards not only for this academic year, but for the future as well and include awards that are important to you and your scholarly work in your career plan. Incorporate awards in your annual discussion with your department executive officer.
  6. Help create an institutional culture of recognition by nominating your colleagues, peers, and mentors and congratulating colleagues when you hear about awards they have earned. This helps to cultivate a dialogue regarding awards and fellowships and puts you in a good position to secure letters and nominations when needed.


The External Recognition and Awards Coordinator within the Office of Research and Economic Development is a campus-wide resource to help faculty pursue and earn external recognition for their research, teaching, and creative activity. The position provides consultation and professional support for preparing and submitting award nominations. Support is available to identify awards for which faculty would be competitive; help write and edit award nominations or application materials; and coordinate and monitor the award nomination process.

Visit research.unl.edu/facultyawards for additional resources or contact Petrina Suiter, External Recognition and Awards Coordinator, at Petrina.Suiter@unl.edu or 402-472-1185.