Skip to body

Resources and Reports

CWUR 1-60-020 Procedures, Criteria, and Nomination Forms for the Award of Honorary Degrees

As authorized by CWUP 2-20-060, honorary degrees provide Central Washington University with a means to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the university over an extended period of time or whose outstanding personal or professional achievements and attainments exemplify the role and mission of the university. Typically, recipients of honorary degrees will have close connections to Central Washington University, either as graduates of the institution or as citizens who have rendered significant service to the institution.
Honorary degrees are special degrees of the university; degrees earned as a result of completion of a program of study shall not be awarded as honorary degrees. Honorary degrees that may be awarded are Master of Humane Letters (MHL), Master of Literature (M Lit), Master of Natural Science (MNS), and Master of Social Science (MSS) or Doctor of Humane Letters (DHL), Doctor of Literature (D Lit), Doctor of Natural Science (DNS) and Doctor of Social Science (DSS).
To preserve the integrity of the process, the award of honorary degrees should be justified on the basis of unusual and distinctive circumstances. A faculty Ad Hoc Honorary Degree Committee will be appointed each year to review and recommend action on honorary degree nominations. The committee’s review process shall automatically exclude the following individuals from consideration: a person may not nominate himself or herself; university employees may not be nominated until at least two years have passed since their separation from employment; and elected or appointed public officials may not be nominated until after completion of their terms of office.
The timeline for selection of honorary degree recipients is:

Due dateDescription
November 15Faculty Senate Executive Committee submits a list of at least twelve faculty names with representation from each college to the Provost.
November 20The Provost will appoint an Ad Hoc Honorary Degree Selection Committee of four faculty members, one representing each college, from the list of at least twelve names submitted by the Faculty Senate Executive Committee.
January 10

Honorary degree nominations, which may be made by any member of the campus community, are due to the President‘s office.
Nomination materials must include:
Nomination form (attached)
-  A curriculum vitae or comparably complete biographical information on the nominee
-  Letters of recommendation, support or corroboration from colleagues, associates, students or relevant others (5 maximum).

January 15The President’s Office forwards nomination materials to the Ad Hoc Honorary Degree Selection Committee.
February 1Recommendations due from the Faculty Ad Hoc Honorary Degree Committee to the President of those nominees whom they unanimously endorse for the award. Recommendations should be summarized in a single document.
February 15The president will review the recommendations of the Faculty Ad Hoc Honorary Degree Committee and determine whether or not to forward the nominees to the Board of Trustees for consideration no later than the May meeting.

The president or his or her designee will notify selectees and will arrange activities surrounding actual granting of the degree and commemoration of the occasion.

To receive the honorary degree, selectees must attend the university commencement following their selection. Only on the rarest of occasions would an exception be granted.

[09/09; Responsibility: President’s Office; Authority: Cabinet/UPAC; Reviewed/Endorsed by: Cabinet/UPAC; Review/Effective Date: 08/03/2011; Approved by: James L. Gaudino, President]