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2015 Distinguished Graduate Student

 Every graduate program has the opportunity to name one currently enrolled student from the program as a "Distinguished Graduate Student" to be recognized during the April awards ceremony. Criteria for selection is left to the faculty of the graduate program and the graduate coordinator is responsible for organizing the selection process and completing the notification form for the Graduate School. Students selected are then eligible to be nominated for induction into the Hamand Society of Graduate Scholars and graduate programs may want to refer to that eligibility criteria when selecting their program's Distinguished Graduate Student, but are not required to do so.

Selection NotificationGraduate Coordinators need to submit their program's selection by Friday, February 20, 2015. Notification is accomplished by completing this form.

Hamand Society Scholars

Purpose: Named in honor of the first dean of The Graduate School, Dr. Lavern Hamand, the Hamand Society recognizes degree-seeking graduate candidates nominated from among the current year's class of Distinguished Graduate Students whose achievements in both scholarship and service have had a documented impact on the discipline and the community. The quality and impact of the scholarship and service achievements of Hamand Society Scholars reflect the highest ideals of the engaged graduate student.

Eligibility Criteria: Documentation may be evidenced by — but not limited to — examples in the categories of scholarship and service listed below. (Nominees must be, or have been, the Distinguished Graduate Student honoree for their program)

GPA Requirements- Nominees must have a cumulative graduate grade point average of 3.75 or higher at the time of nomination for the award.

Enrollment- Nominees must be enrolled full-time or part-time as a degree-seeking candidate at the time of nomination.

Scholarship- Awards/recognition for scholarship, research projects, or creative activity.

Peer-reviewed publication and/or presentation of graduate work.

Invitations to present graduate work.

Other scholarship.

Service- Participation in department, college/school, university organizations.

Participation in civic organizations that enhance life in the community.

Participation in programs that enhance schools and/or other public assets.

Participation in programs that improve the lives of others regionally, nationally or abroad.

Recognition for leadership roles within the university, discipline, workplace or community.

Completion of initiatives or new programs that have positively influenced the university, discipline, workplace or community.

Other service.

Nomination Process: Each nomination requires a sponsor who may be the graduate coordinator, program chair, or member of the graduate faculty at Eastern Illinois University. Each nomination also requires two co-sponsors who have direct knowledge/experience with the candidate and may be members of the university community or may be constituents external to the university. A complete nomination packet will include the following:

  • A Hamand Society nomination form.
  • A letter of nomination from the sponsor that documents the candidate’s achievements and impact in the required areas.
  • Letters from each co-sponsor to verify and amplify upon the candidate’s achievements and impact.
  • A candidate resume.

Complete Packets: Complete packets are limited to eight pages, excluding the nomination form.

Deadline: 4:30 p.m. on the last Friday of February each year. The 2015 deadline is February 27, 2015.

Number: Up to five candidates from those nominated will be inducted into the Hamand Society each year.

Selection: Award winners are selected by the Council on Graduate Studies Hamand Society Board. The Hamand Society Board will include a representative from each of the colleges appointed by the dean of the Graduate School. Members of the board in any given year cannot nominate a student or provide letters of support for a Hamand Society Scholar.

Recognition: Hamand Scholars will be inducted into the Hamand Society during the Distinguished Graduate Students Awards Ceremony. Scholars become lifetime members of the society and will be invited to return to campus periodically to participate in the ceremonies for newly inducted recipients.

Robert and Kathryn Augustine Distinguished Master's Thesis Award Competition and Midwest Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) Thesis Nomination

Purpose: Recognition of the highest achievement in master's degree research based on projects completed between July 1, 2012, and June 30, 2014.

Award: $500 honorarium with possible nomination for the MAGS Distinguished Thesis Award, and recognition during the Distinguished Graduate Student Awards Ceremony.

MAGS Requirements: The Midwest Association of Graduate Schools rotates the nomination categories by academic discipline yearly. If the Distinguished Master's Thesis Award winner meets the current disciplinary category then it automatically advances to the MAGS competition. If it does not meet the current MAGS criteria then the next highest ranking theses from the appropriate disciplines from the college winners will advance. The winner of the MAGS competition receives a $750 honorarium from MAGS and travel expenses (up to $500) to attend the annual MAGS conference. For current information on the MAGS thesis competition,click here.

Eligibility: Graduate degree-seeking candidates who completed a thesis as part of the requirements for the master's degree during the dates specified.

Application:  Each department or graduate program will select one thesis from among those submitted to forward to the Council on Graduate Studies for consideration. The department or program will submit to The Graduate School a digital copy of the thesis being nominated; a digital copy of an abstract of the thesis not to exceed 300 words, which describes the research and its significance; a digital one-page resume of the nominee, and a letter from the graduate faculty mentor noting the significance and quality of the work, all to be e-mailed to Ben Rienbolt in the Graduate School at bcrienbolt@eiu.edu.

Deadline: 4:30 p.m. on the second Friday of October each year. The 2014 deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 10, 2014.

Number: One award per year.

Selection: Award winners are selected by the Awards Committee of the Council on Graduate Studies.

Obligation: The candidate selected for the Augustine Distinguished Thesis Award will be photographed and featured on the cover of the Graduate Journal of Scholarship and may be required to present the thesis during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition in April each spring semester. Students no longer on campus at the time of the exposition may have their work presented by a faculty mentor or colleague and must arrange for a representative to accept the award during the awards ceremony.

The EIU College Thesis Award of Excellence

Purpose: Recognition of the highest achievement in graduate research from each of the four academic colleges based on master's thesis projects completed between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2014. Recipients will be selected from among those who are nominated for, but do not receive, the Augustine Distinguished Master's Thesis Award.

Award: $250 honorarium from The Graduate School and recognition during the Distinguished Graduate Student Awards Ceremony.

Eligibility: The same eligibility requirements as the Augustine Distinguished Thesis Award.

Application: Application guidelines are those outlined for the Robert and Kathryn Augustine Distinguished Master's Thesis Award Competition and Midwest Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) Thesis Nomination.

Deadline: 4:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of October each year. The 2014 deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014.

Number: Four awards per year — one each in the College of Arts and Humanities, the College of Education and Professional Studies, the Lumpkin College of Business and Applied Sciences, and the College of Sciences.

Selection: Award winners are selected by an Awards Subcommittee of the Council on Graduate Studies.

Obligation: The candidate selected for the EIU College Thesis Award of Excellence will be photographed and featured in the Graduate Journal of Scholarship and may be required to present the project during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition in April each spring semester. Students no longer on campus at the time of the exposition may have their work presented by a faculty mentor or colleague and must arrange for a representative to accept the award during the awards ceremony.

The King-Mertz Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award

Purpose: Recognition of the highest achievement in graduate research based on non-thesis graduate research/creative activity projects required for a degree program and completed between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31 the prior year.

Award: $500 honorarium and recognition during the Distinguished Graduate Student Awards Ceremony.

Eligibility: Graduate degree-seeking candidates who completed the research/creative activity as part of the requirements for the graduate degree during the dates specified.

Nominations: All nominations are electronic. A complete nomination packet includes a letter of nomination from the graduate faculty mentor noting the significance and quality of the work; a written abstract of the project not to exceed 300 words which describes the project and its significance, a one-page resume of the nominee, and a copy of the project. The copy may be submitted as a text file if the project is a written document; as an images or images if the project is artwork; or as a media/video file if the project is a recital, performance, or presentation. The abstract must include the title of the project, the name of the degree program, and the name of the author. All to be e-mailed to Ben Rienbolt in the Graduate School at bcrienbolt@eiu.edu.

Deadline: 4:30 p.m. on the first Friday of February each year. The 2015 deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, February 6, 2015. 

Number: One award per year.

Program Nomination: Each degree program selects one project to forward to The Graduate School's College Screening Committee. Program nominations are reviewed and selected according to procedures developed by the degree program.

College Screening Committee: The Graduate School's College Screening Committee will select two nominees from each college to be considered for selection by the Council on Graduate Studies. The four College Screening Committees are composed of the Graduate Coordinator or the Coordinator's designee from each program in the college.

Council on Graduate Studies: The Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award recipient is selected by the Council on Graduate Studies Awards Committee from the eight nominations forwarded from the College Screening Committees.

Obligation: The candidate selected for the King-Mertz Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award will be photographed and featured in the Graduate Journal of Scholarship and may be required to present the project during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition in April each spring semester. Students no longer on campus at the time of the exposition may have their work presented by a faculty mentor or colleague and must arrange for a representative to accept the award during the awards ceremony.

The King-Mertz Research/Creative Activity College Award of Excellence

Purpose: Recognition of the highest achievement in non-thesis graduate research/creative activity in each of the four academic colleges based on non-thesis research/creative activity projects completed between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31 of the prior year. Recipients will be selected from those who are nominated for but do not receive the EIU Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award.

Award: $250 honorarium and recognition during the Distinguished Graduate Student Awards Ceremony.

Eligibility: Graduate degree-seeking candidates who completed the research/creative activity as part of the requirements for the graduate degree during the dates specified.

Application: Application guidelines are those outlined for the EIU Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award Nomination.

Deadline: 4:30 p.m. on the first Friday of February each year. The 2014 deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, February 6, 2015. 

Number: Four awards per year; one each in the College of Arts and Humanities, the College of Education and Professional Studies, the Lumpkin College of Business and Applied Sciences, and the College of Sciences.

Program Nomination: Each degree program selects one project to forward to The Graduate School's College Screening Committee. Program nominations are reviewed and selected according to procedures developed by the degree program.

College Screening Committee: The Graduate School's College Screening Committee will select two nominees from each college to be considered for selection by the Council on Graduate Studies. The four College Screening Committees are composed of the graduate coordinator or the coordinator's designee from each program in the college.

Council on Graduate Studies: The Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award recipient is selected by the Council on Graduate Studies Awards Committee from the eight nominations forwarded from the College Screening Committees.

Obligation: The candidate selected for the King-Mertz Research/Creative Activity College Award of Excellence will be photographed and featured in the Graduate Journal of Scholarship and may be required to present the project during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition in April each spring semester. Students no longer on campus at the time of the exposition may have their work presented by a faculty mentor or colleague and must arrange for a representative to accept the award during the awards ceremony.

The Graduate School Research/Creative Activity Grants

Purpose: The purpose of the Graduate School Research Awards Competition is to provide financial incentives for outstanding graduate research and creative activity projects that include opportunities for graduate students to partner with external businesses, industries or educational agencies to foster improvements and development of new creative ideas.

Award: Up to $1000, depending on the quality of the proposal and recognition during the Distinguished Graduate Students Award Ceremony. (Funds are transferred to the department.)

Application: Applications require completion of a proposal form, an abstract of the project, a project budget, a one-page resume of the graduate candidate, a letter of support from the partner agency, and a letter of support from the graduate faculty mentor. Submit proposal.

Deadline: Completed proposals must be received by the Graduate School by the first Friday of November each fall and the second Friday of February in the spring.

    • Fall 2014 Competition — deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 7, 2014.
    • Spring 2015 Competition — contingent upon available funds — deadline is 4:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 6, 2015. 
Number: Eight awards per year are granted. The initial distribution is two awards distributed to each academic college. If there are no submissions from a college or if there are no projects selected from a college, the available award(s) will be open to university-wide consideration.

Selection: All award proposals are reviewed and selected by the Awards Committee of the Council on Graduate Studies.

Obligation: The candidates selected for the Research Awards will be photographed and featured in the Graduate Journal of Scholarship and may be required to present their work during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition in April each spring semester.

Williams Travel Grant Application Information

Williams Travel Grants were established to provide travel support for EIU graduate degree-seeking candidates who have papers or creative works accepted for presentation at regional, state, national or international conferences between July 1 and June 30 of the current fiscal year. The current competition covers presentations made from July 1, 2014, to June 30, 2015.

Award: These grants are for reimbursement of documented travel expenses up to $500. Grants will be made based on the quality of the application. A 25 percent match from the candidate's department is encouraged. Williams Travel Grant Winners may be required to present their projects during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition each spring semester. Winners will be photographed and featured in the Graduate Journal of Scholarship.

Eligibility: Graduate degree-seeking candidates who are enrolled at the university during the term the project was presented.

Deadline:

  • Fall Competition: 4:30 p.m. on the first Friday of November each year. The Fall 2014 deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 7, 2014.
  • Spring Competition: 4:30 p.m. on the first Friday in February. The Spring 2015 deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 6, 2015.

Application: A Williams Travel Grant application will consist of the following:

  • A completed application form, link found below.
  • Documentation that the work submitted has been accepted for presentation during the eligibility dates. (A copy of an acceptance letter or page from the program is sufficient).
  • An abstract of 250 words or less describing the work presented.
  • A letter from the candidate's faculty mentor that addresses (a) the role of the student in the work and in its presentation at the meeting, (b) the contribution of the work to the candidate's field, and (c) verification that the student will be enrolled in the university at the time of the presentation.

Provisional Consideration: Students who have submitted a paper for peer review but may not receive notification of acceptance before the spring due date may request provisional consideration. The Provisional Consideration Application requires completion of the standard Williams Travel application form as outlined above and must include a letter requesting provisional approval until the student has received notification of the paper's acceptance for presentation.

If Provisional Consideration is approved, the student must provide evidence that the paper was accepted for presentation, as outlined in the application guidelines above, in order to receive the award.

Williams Travel Grant Application

 

EIU and Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) Excellence in Teaching Award for Graduate Assistants

Purpose: The purpose of the Eastern Illinois University and Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) excellence in teaching award for graduate assistants is to recognize the importance of excellence in teaching and mentoring as a component of graduate education and as part of the preparation of graduate students for future service as college and university faculty.

 Award: $250 honorarium from The Graduate School, nomination for the MAGS Excellence in Teaching Award, and recognition during the Distinguished Graduate Student Awards Ceremony. If selected by MAGS, the award winner receives a $750 honorarium from MAGS and travel expenses to attend the annual MAGS conference.

 Eligibility:

  • Supervised Instructional Assistants: Graduate candidates who hold appointments as supervised instructional assistants in approved degree programs and who perform teaching and mentoring as a component of graduate education and as part of their preparation for careers as college faculty are eligible for nomination. The eight degree programs at Eastern that are approved to use supervised instructional assistants as part of their educational mission are listed below.
    • Master of Arts in Art,
    • Master of Arts in Communication Studies,
    • Master of Arts in English,
    • Master of Science in College Student Affairs,
    • Master of Science in Counseling,
    • Master of Science in Kinesiology & Sports Studies,
    • Master of Science in Biological Sciences,
    • Master of Arts in Mathematics, and  
  • Teaching Assistants: Graduate candidates who perform teaching duties as part of a teaching assistantship in any degree program may be eligible if they perform teaching and mentoring as a component of graduate education and as part of their preparation to consider careers as college faculty.
  • Eligibility also requires that the nominees must be enrolled during the prior Fall and current Spring terms. At least one prior term of teaching experience is required for the competition; however, all prior teaching while in pursuit of the degree at EIU may be included in the review portfolio. The nominee must be enrolled at EIU during the Spring 2015 term to receive recognition.

Nomination: Graduate Coordinators are responsible for nominating candidates. Each program may select one assistant who meets the eligibility criteria to forward to the Council on Graduate Studies for consideration. The program will submit a digital copy of the materials outlined below to Ben Rienbolt in the Graduate School at bcrienbolt@eiu.edu.

Letter of support from the Department Chair
A Teaching Portfolio that is limited to 6 double spaced pages and includes a summary of the following:

    • Statement of teaching philosophy
    • Evidence of instructional design and innovation, instructional delivery, course management, and student learning
    • Evidence of how research informs teaching
    • Courses taught, number of students, instructional responsibility
    • Summary (strengths or compelling statements) of student evaluations of teaching
    • Awards and honors for teaching excellence
    • Evidence of effective student/colleague mentoring
    • Curriculum Vitae

Additional Nomination Materials Required of the Selected Recipient

The EIU recipient of this award will be required to include the following materials with their MAGS Nomination:

  • 10 minute video clip of “teaching in action.” The video clip should be filmed by the Center for Academic Technology Services (CATS) and the Graduate School will assist in arranging filming.

  • The Graduate School will submit a current transcript and a Nomination Form at the time of submission to MAGS.

 Deadlines: The nomination portfolio is due to the Graduate School by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, December 5, 2014.

 Selection: Award winners are selected by the Executive Committee (Chair and Vice Chair) of EIU’s Council on Graduate Studies.

 Obligation: The candidate selected for the EIU/MAGS Excellence in Teaching Award will be photographed and featured in the Graduate Journal of Scholarship and may be required to present during the Annual Graduate Student Exposition in April each spring semester.

Graduate Student Commencement Speaker Competition

Purpose: To promote Eastern’s commitment to strengthening the academic and personal experience for our students and to showcase examples of exemplary writing and speaking, Eastern Illinois University will inaugurate the Student Commencement Speaker Series. This program replaces the former student and faculty speaker traditions at Eastern.

A Student Speaker representing the Graduate School will be featured during the Fall 2014 morning ceremony Saturday, December 20, 2014.

Commencement Speaker eligibility requirements: 

Graduation Criteria: Students eligible for consideration must provide evidence from the degree audit that they will meet the requirements for graduation in the commencement ceremony they seek to represent. Student commencement speakers are expected to speak at their commencement ceremony.

Scholarship Criteria: Students eligible for consideration must have a graduate cumulative GPA of 3.25 or higher for courses competed at Eastern Illinois University at the time that they submit materials for consideration.

 Submission materials: To compete for the position students must submit a written essay to the Graduate School by 4:30 p.m. September 30, 2014 and include an endorsement letter from a faculty mentor. Submit materials to Ben Rienbolt at bcrienbolt@eiu.edu.

 Faculty role: Students seeking to submit essays will identify a faculty mentor to assist with the project. Mentors may include course instructors, advisors, or any member of the graduate faculty who will provide guidance and support appropriate to writing an effective essay. Faculty who serve in mentor roles will introduce the Student Commencement Speaker at the commencement ceremony.

 Essay guidelines: 2014-2015 Essay Theme: 

  • The Things that Matter are the Things that Last: What educational experiences mattered to you while at Eastern Illinois University that made a difference and will follow you into your future?

Essay Length: Essays are limited to 3 pages.  

Essay Format: Essays are submitted electronically. The first page should include the essay title, author name, and degree program. The essay author should use a standard 12 point font, standard one-inch margins, and double spacing.   

Speaker Recognition:

Publication: The Speaker and Alternate Speaker essays will be published electronically at the Graduate School web site.

Commencement Recognition: The faculty mentor will have the honor of introducing the Speaker and Alternate Speaker. Both the Speaker and Alternate Speaker will be recognized at the conclusion of the speech by the Provost.

Graduate School Recognition: The Graduate School Speaker will receive an honorarium from the Graduate School, will receive a plaque in recognition of the honor at a special reception hosted by the Graduate School the preceding evening, and recognition during the Spring Awards Program.

 

Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois (DFI) Fellowship

The Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in (DFI) Illinois Program Board and the Illinois Board of Higher Education has applications available for the 2013-2014 DFI Fellowship Program. The DFI program annually provides competitive fellowship awards to over 100 Illinois minority graduate students. The program aids students to complete graduate degrees (master’s or doctoral) leading to faculty or staff positions at Illinois higher education institutions.

Applicants must be enrolled full-time and file their FAFSA by Feb. 3, 2014, in order to be eligible. Award winners may receive up to $20,000 in scholarship stipend. Completed applications must be submitted to Eastern Illinois University's DFI Representative on or before Feb. 17, 2014, at 5 p.m. Submit completed applications to:

Bill Elliott, DFI Representative
Assistant Dean of Graduate and International Admissions, Graduate School
1201 Blair hall
E-mail: wjelliott@eiu.edu

Below are the direct links to the DFI Fellowship Program regarding qualifications, application, and other information:

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