The Utah Tech University (UT) Board of Trustees is given the authority and responsibility to select recipients of honorary degrees (Utah Code unannotated 1994, 53B-2-103 “Powers and Duties of Boards of Trustees”). To accomplish this charge, the UT Board of Trustees hereby establishes a Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee’s primary responsibilities include soliciting and encouraging an adequate number of qualified nominations and reviewing nominations for Honorary Degrees. This Committee will, in addition, solicit and encourage nominations for Commencement Speakers, Distinguished Citizens/Alumni, Trustees Excellence in Education Awards, and Trustees Excellence in Service Awards. The selected nominees will then be forwarded to the Board of Trustees who, in consultation with the University President, will approve of the final selection.

The Nominating Committee will be comprised of the following members:

  • The executive members of the Board of Trustees.
  • Two members from the UT Faculty who will be appointed for two year staggered terms. The Faculty Senate will provide the University President with three names each year from whom the President will select one to serve on the Committee.
  • Two members from the UT staff, one from classified and one from exempt, who will be appointed for two year staggered terms. Each staff association President will provide the University President with three names each year from which he will select one to serve on the Committee.
  • One member from the Alumni Council
  • One member from the UT Associated Students, The President of UTSA or his/her designee
  • The Executive Vice President or his/her designee, who serves in an ex-officio capacity and whose office will provide administrative support for the Screening Committee
The Chair of the Board of Trustees will chair the committee, or appoint a Board member to do so.

Previous recipients by year:

Commencement Speakers Honorary Doctorates Distinguished Citizens Excellence in Service Awards Excellence in Education Awards Former Board of Trustee Members

Criteria for Nominations

Honorary Doctorate*

  • People who have achieved distinction in their professional field
    • Creative Arts: art, literature, music, dance, architecture, engineering, etc.
    • Professions: distinguished contributions, innovative work of distinction
    • Business and Industry: outstanding innovational activity in the business community
    • Scholarship, in any discipline: major breakthroughs of knowledge in fields of scholarly work.
  • Bring honor to the recipient and the University
    • Public service: outstanding achievement in statesmanship, administration, philanthropy, legislative activity, the judiciary
  • Recognize those who have participated in the development of the University and to further future contributions
  • The prime and controlling consideration should be distinction.

Commencement Speaker*

  • An individual’s ability to deliver a stimulating and thought provoking address
  • A known and accomplished individual capable of attracting an audience to commencement ceremonies
  • An individual who has achieved a distinguished professional or academic career nationally or internationally.

Distinguished Citizen and/or Alum*

  • A citizen or alum who has given distinguished service to the nation, the University, the community and/or their profession over the course of at least 5 years.
*Those serving in administrative, faculty or staff positions at UT are not eligible for nomination of an Honorary Doctorate, to be the Commencement Speaker or Distinguished Citizen/Alumni award. Emeriti are eligible even if engaged in teaching or research for the University. Elected officials of the state of Utah and its subordinate units and members of the legislature of the state of Utah, during their terms of office, are not ordinarily eligible. Honorary Degrees will not be awarded in absentia.

Trustees Excellence in Education Award

The Board of Trustees recognizes faculty who, over the course of at least 5 years, have:
  • Contributed to or promoted UT's mission and values
  • Provided significant service and/or research related to their academic field
  • Participated in community outreach
  • Enhanced teaching through learning, innovating, and focusing on student success
  • Set themselves apart from their peers+

Trustees Excellence in Service Award

The Board of Trustees recognizes executives and staff who, over the course of at least 5 years, have:
  • Contributed to University effectiveness and efficiency
  • Advanced the Universities core themes
  • Set themselves apart from their peers in area(s) of service+
+institutionally, regionally, nationally, and/or internationally


Nominations will follow a two-step process. The first submittal shall be the completion of the nomination form along with a short biographical sketch of the nominee and specific information about the nominee’s relationships to UT. As needed, advocates for the nominees selected from the first round of applicants may be asked to submit a second, more complete application. This would include expanded detail regarding the significance and accomplishments of the candidate, one or more letters of endorsement, and references.


Faculty, staff, alumni, students, community members and others may submit nominations yearly during April and May. The Nominating Committee will review and ask for additional information, if needed, from June through August. The Nominating Committee recommends candidates to the Board of Trustees (BOT) Executive Committee by September 1st for awards or honors to be bestowed the following Spring. The list will consist of approximately three names each for honorary degrees, commencement speaker, and other awards. The BOT Executive Committee, in consultation with the President, will recommend final selections to be presented to the Board of Trustees in the September BOT meeting, and no later than the November BOT meeting. If you would like to nominate an individual, please fill out this form.