Alumni Awards

The University of Chicago has a long tradition of honoring distinguished and committed alumni who have shaped the world and strengthened our global alumni community. The alumni medals and public service awards date back to 1941.

To kick-off the new UChicago Focus series hosted by the Yuen Campus Hong Kong, we have invited Norman C. W. Yung (AB’93) from UChicago Alumni Board, to walk us through how the Alumni Board works to connect UChicago alumni globally, the key characteristics of prior alumni award winners, the eligibility, criteria and procedures of the Alumni Awards nominations.

Replay the presentation by Norman now.


The presentation deck is available HERE.


Key Takeaways

Alumni Awards

What are the categories for Alumni Awards?
o       Alumni Medal
o       Service Awards
        ·   Alumni Service Medal
        ·   Alumni Service Award
        ·   Young Alumni Service Awards
o       Professional Achievement
        ·   Professional Achievement Award
             -  Business
             -  Academia
             -  Public Service
        ·   Early Career Achievement Award

What are the key dates for Alumni Awards nomination?
o   Jun – Nov        Nominations open online
o   Nov – Mar        Alumni Awards Committee deliberates
o   Mar – Apr        Alumni Board notifies awardees
o   Nov                 Alumni Awards Ceremony

What is the eligibility for Alumni Awards nomination?
o   Must be an alumnus or alumna.
o  Cannot currently be employees of the University, voting members of the Board of Trustee, or current members of the Alumni Board.
o   Cannot currently be in a position of elected or appointed government office.
o   Must have at least two letters of support.

Please visit HERE for detailed information and individual award criteria.

Does self-nomination carry any weight?
Self-nomination is accepted. You may first refer a few people in your profession who know you well, and whom the Alumni Board can speak to about your achievement. The Board will then solicit letter of support from them where web/email submission is available.

How to start the nomination process?
Do you know any alumni who would be a strong candidate? Start a nomination package HERE now, or reach out the Norman Yung at ncwyung@gmail.com for any thoughts or questions.

Alumni Board

What are the key dates for Alumni Board nomination?
o   Jun – Nov        Nominations open online
o   Nov – Mar       Alumni Board Nominations and Membership Committee deliberates
o   Mar – Apr        Alumni Board notifies candidates
o   1st July            Two-Year Term begins

What is the eligibility for Alumni Awards nomination?
o   Must be an alumnus or alumna.
o   Have demonstrated history of leadership and service to the University.
o  Must commit to attending meetings in person twice a year in Chicago (remote during the pandemic).
o   Willing to serve as an enthusiastic ambassador for the University in their communities.
o   Should philanthropically support the University, at any level, annually.
o   Secure two or more letters of support for the candidate, in addition to your own.
o   Self-nominations are accepted.

Please visit HERE for detailed information and start the nomination process.


Frequently Asked Questions

What type of alumni would be better fit to be nominated to the Alumni Board and Alumni Awards respectively? Are there different types of profile for each?
We are generally looking for alumni who are motivated, very driven, high-achieving, and want to get involved and giving back to the University.

For Alumni Board members, they usually demonstrated years of service to the University.

We are looking for a more balanced representation of alumni from the Asia regions in the Alumni Board and Alumni Awards nominations. So you are encouraged to start getting involved such as nominating your fellow alumni for Alumni Awards.

Please note that you can be nominated for Alumni Board and Alumni Awards at the same time, but alumni serving on the Board, and in the 4 years afterwards, is not eligible to be nominated for any Alumni Awards.

Some of the past awardees are high achievers or even celebrities. Is it the aim of the Alumni Board and the Alumni Awards?
There are many past awardees who have different areas of excellence in their own fields. You don’t need to be prominent and may be serving in the social non-profit area for the Alumni Service Awards aspect.

Everyone is encouraged to consider for the nominations and Alumni Board ambassador will be happy to talk to anyone who may be interested in the process.

How important is who wrote the letter of support?
It’s not necessary to have a prominent referee to write your letter of support. It’s more important to have someone who knows you well, and can provide richness and depth to your nomination.