Graduate Diversity & Inclusion Awards

four people standing together holding flowers and award plaques

Each year, OISE and the Graduate and Professional Diversity Council present several awards to graduate and professional degree students who have demonstrated a strong commitment towards advancing efforts around diversity, inclusion, outreach, and student engagement. Additionally, we present awards to faculty, staff, and community members who have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to promoting the growth and personal and professional development of graduate and professional students who represent the diversity of the Cornell community.

2024 Graduate Diversity and Inclusion Awards & Recognition Celebration

Date: 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. ET, May 14, 2024

Awards & Recognition Registration

Distinguished Award Categories

The Graduate Diversity & Inclusion Awards are given to graduate and professional degree students (or recent graduates), collective groups of graduate and professional students (partnerships, committees, coalitions, etc.), faculty, and staff who have significantly advanced aspects of diversity, equity, inclusion, outreach, and student engagement through their leadership, actions, and/or service. We encourage nominations from students, faculty, staff, and alumni.  

Nomination Submission Deadline: March 4, 2024 

Nomination Form

Nomination & Selection Timeline 

  • Call for nominations – Early February
  • Nominations are due – Early March
  • Decisions finalized and released – Late April

Nomination Guidelines 

Within the nomination form, you will have the opportunity to upload a letter of nomination for each individual and/or organizational nominee. If you are aware of others who may be preparing a letter of nomination for the same individual and/or organization, the Nominations Committee encourages (but does not require) the submission of a collaborative letter of nomination.  

Though self-nominations are permitted for the individual award categories listed below, anyone who self-nominates for an individual award, must supplement their self-nomination with at least one secondary nomination from someone who can speak meaningfully to how the self-nominee’s contributions map to the award criteria.  

  • Exemplary Leadership & Service Awards   
  • Unsung Hero Awards  
  • Faculty Champion Awards 

Word Count Limits: Letters of nomination should be no less than 350 words, but no more than 1000.   

Award Categories  

Exemplary Leadership & Service Awards [Individual Award Category] 

Awarded to students who have a demonstrated track record of exemplary leadership and service to the Cornell graduate and professional student community, especially in the areas of diversity, inclusion, outreach, and student engagement. Service might include but is not limited to efforts to build a stronger graduate and professional student community through peer mentorship, student advocacy, and support of graduate student organizations.  

Recipients of this award have demonstrated the ability to collaborate positively with the others toward a shared goal that has improved the academic, personal, and/or professional lives and experiences of members of our graduate community.  

This award has two subcategories:   

Early Career 

Awarded to first-year professional degree students (MPA, MFA, DVM, etc.), first year research master’s degree students (MS, MA, etc.), and/or pre-A Exam PhD students at the time of nomination.   

Advanced Career 

Awarded to professional and research master’s degree students beyond their first year of study and/or post-A Exam PhD students at the time of nomination.    

Community Access & Outreach Awards [Organizational Award Category] 

Awarded to collective groups of individuals (student organizations, partnerships, committees, coalitions, etc.) engaged in outreach initiatives that address inequities, create avenues of access, and/or advance aspects of diversity and inclusion for the benefit of communities within or beyond Cornell.   
    
This award has two subcategories:   

Impact on Communities Within Cornell 

Awarded to collective groups that have positively impacted communities Within Cornell through initiatives addressing inequities, creating avenues of access, and/or advancing aspects of diversity and inclusion. 

Impact on Communities Beyond Cornell 

Awarded to collective groups that have positively impacted communities Beyond Cornell through initiatives addressing inequities, creating avenues of access, and/or advancing aspects of diversity and inclusion. 

Unsung Hero Award [Individual Award Category] 

Awarded to a member of the community who is neither a graduate student nor a faculty member who contributes to the advancement of diversity, equity, inclusion and access in graduate education. They have done this by going above and beyond in their support of the success of Cornell graduate and professional degree students, especially as it relates to enhancing their sense of belonging, overall well-being, progression, and achievement.   

Faculty Champion Awards [Individual Award Category] 

Awarded to faculty members who advise graduate and/or professional degree students who foster diversity, equity, inclusion and access in graduate education through exemplary mentorship, leadership, and/or outreach activities within the Cornell community. Those who receive this award have shown an unwavering commitment to promoting the growth and personal and professional development of graduate and professional students who represent the diversity of the Cornell community. This award has two subcategories:    

This award has two sub-categories:  

Early Career Faculty 

Awarded to early career faculty members to recognize immediate and significant contributions.   

Advanced Career Faculty 

Awarded to mid to advanced career faculty to recognize their ongoing and significant contributions.