Graduate Students' Achievement Award

The Graduate Students' Achievement Award is intended to recognize significant achievement in any research or creative activity by full and part-time graduate students making satisfactory progress in their degree program. Graduate Students recognized for their achievement will be listed on the GSA website. 
Achievement is specifically defined, for purposes of this award, as a completed piece of research or other creative activity that has been recognized by some external (to the home department) organization or selected by the academic department for regional or national presentation (in fields where the accepted standard is departmental selection). A completed piece of research means that the presentation has already occurred or is in the process of being published. Examples include:

  • A graduate student has a paper accepted at a professional meeting. The professional organization has a formal review process and does not accept all papers submitted.
  • A graduate student is specifically invited to display art works at an exhibit at another university.
  • A graduate student has a paper accepted for publication in a professional periodical. There is a formal review process with some selectivity involved.

All applications are due by June 5, 2020 on or before 5:00 PM EST.

Application Procedures

For your application provide the following information using the headings shown below, followed by the information to be provided by your Department Chair or major professor. The application should be combined into a single Word or PDF file and submitted to the Graduate School at by your Department Chair. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

To Be Provided By The Applicant

Personal Information—

Provide your name, address, email address, department, degree program, and banner ID.

Description of the Achievement—

A one page (maximum) description of the achievement written in non-technical language for a non-specialist audience. A copy of the paper or journal abstract may be attached but is not required.

"Award Worthiness" of the Achievement—

The applicant must provide a brief, clearly written statement indicating why the achievement is deserving of an award, not to exceed 500 words. This statement should draw attention to the merit of the achievement in relation to the criteria used by the department in determining its endorsement: Quality of work, Significance of work, and Stringency of criteria for acceptance for presentation/publication. In addition, the statement should be informative and intelligible to non-specialists on the committee.

Previous Graduate Student Achievement Awards—

All previous Graduate Student Achievement Awards received, if any, must be listed by title and year of the award.

To Be Provided By The Department Chair Or Major Professor

Department Recommendation—

Applications should be endorsed by either the Department Chair or the student’s major professor. Recommendations should address the:

  1. quality of work
  2. significance of work
  3. stringency of criteria (such as review process); and
  4. verification of publication/presentation of the work and place of presentation.

Application Submission—

While the endorsement may be provided by the department chair or the major professor, the application must be submitted to the Graduate School at by the department chair via his/her MU email account (this will serve as his/her signature).

Application Deadlines—


All applications are due by June 5, 2020 on or before 5:00 PM EST.

Evaluation of Applications

Completed applications will be reviewed by the Academic Achievement Fund sub-committee of Graduate Council using the following criteria:

Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

The judgment of the committee resulting from individual readings of the completed applications submitted. The committee recognizes and accepts the responsibility of making decisions, which are based on merit considerations. Accordingly, departmental endorsements of students' achievements are both necessary and vital. Listed below are the specific criteria used by the committee in the evaluation of applications: a) Quality of evidence presented regarding significance of the achievement; b) Quality of departmental endorsement; c) Quality of the written presentation; d) Nature of recognition of the achievement; and e) Evidence regarding independence of work.

The committee will make only one award to an individual applicant during each round of competition.

In the situation where achievement involves a joint presentation or publication with faculty member, a statement must be included which indicates a) the primary contribution to the project has been made by the applicant and b) the nature and degree of the faculty member's contribution.

If your work is an original piece of art (picture, jewelry, sculptures, etc.) please submit electronic photos along with your application.

All applications are due by June 5, 2020 on or before 5:00 PM EST.