The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Award honors individuals whose important contributions advance education and employment opportunities for people with disabilities at the University of Montana-Missoula. The ADA Team recognizes that endeavors toward carrying on the spirit of the ADA require commitment and perseverance through challenges. Awardees continually set a high standard of excellence by honoring the importance of civil rights laws, using best quality practices, and creating innovative solutions that support the vision of the University of Montana to create a completely accessible campus. The award comes with a $1,000 prize.

The Distinguished Service to International Education Award is presented to a member of the UM community who has achieved an outstanding record of distinguished service to international education at UM. The Award comes with a $1,000 prize.

Who is eligible:
Any member of the UM community.

Factors considered in the award process include:

  • promotion of international curriculum and awareness.
  • assistance to foreign students and scholars.
  • international program development.
  • promotion of overseas educational experiences among members of the UM campus community.
  • distinguished work in international development.
  • outstanding international scholarship.
  • teaching.

Who may nominate:
Any individual, group or organization within the UM community.

The Nancy Borgmann Diversity Award, named in honor of a former Director of the Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity, recognizes contributions made by an individual who supports the University's mission on diversity. The award comes with a $1,000 prize.

Who is eligible:
All full-time permanent University employee who has contributed substantially to cultural diversity at UM.

Who may nominate:
Any member of the University community may nominate.

The Outstanding Teamwork Award recognizes staff from any office, unit, department, group or staff within an office, cross-functional group of staff or committee of staff members who have worked together in an exceptional manner to perform an assigned task. The award includes a $3,000 prize to be divided equally among team members (no less than $50 per person), lunch with the President and the Executive Officers, and a traveling plaque.

Who is eligible:
Staff members who perform as a team beyond the scope of their regular day-to-day job duties and responsibilities. Members of the team must be non-temporary staff members. There is no minimum required length of employment by the University.

As a result of working as a team, the department, office, work-unit or University should have benefited in one or more of the following ways:

  • specific, identifiable improved efficiencies.
  • cost savings.
  • cross-training resulting in expanding job responsibilities and improving service to "customers."
  • innovative ideas or suggestions to improve methods.
  • completion of special projects.
  • functioning in unique (sometimes adverse) circumstances.
  • improved coordination and cooperation among department.

Who may nominate:
Any administrator, staff or faculty member.

The $1,000 Service to Students Award recognizes competent and courteous services, including academic and personal advising, by staff.

Who is eligible:
Any individual staff member, contract professional or employee on a letter of appointment.

Staff members nominated for this award should have demonstrated:

  • commitment to making the university experience a positive one for students.
  • service to students that assists in cutting through campus bureaucratic red tape.
  • commitment to the development of quality programs and/or activities that contribute to personal and academic development of the student and/or the university experience.
  • demonstrated commitment to "being there" for students when they encounter personal or academic problems.
  • demonstrated recognition of our role as an institution of higher education and that our primary customers are the students.
  • commitment to ASUM's motto of "Students 1st!"

Who may nominate:
Faculty, staff, administrators or students.

The $1,000 Outstanding Service to the Campus Community Award recognizes service to UM employees.

Who is eligible:
Any staff member, contract professional or employee on a letter of appointment.

The award focuses on employees who serve campus and UM employees in an exemplary manner.

Who may nominate:
Any faculty, staff, administrator or off-campus individual.

The Outstanding Staff Award: Campus Interaction and Meritorious Job Performance Award worth $1,000 is presented to University of Montana employees. The Campus Interaction and Meritorious Job Performance Award focuses on a staff member who not only exceeds expectations within the department but also interacts and provides service campus-wide, creating positive interactions with others and having impact outside of the department.ed to University of Montana employees.

Who is eligible:
Any classified staff member with a minimum of three years' service as a permanent employee.

Who may nominate:
Any University employee, including staff, faculty, and administrators.
The Outstanding Staff Award: Excellence in Job Performance Award worth $1,000 is presented to University of Montana employees. This award focuses on a staff member who excels in all aspects of his or her position, someone who possesses an excellent work ethic and has an extraordinary impact within the department as a role model, connecting with students, staff, faculty, or administrators.

Who is eligible:
Any classified staff member with a minimum of three years' service as a permanent employee.

Who may nominate:
Any University employee, including staff, faculty, and administrators.


Faculty are expected to serve on committees, attend University functions, and render public service in the area of his/her professional competence (UFA 6.200). The successful candidate will have a history of providing superior (effective) service that benefits The University of Montana. The award comes with a $1,000 prize.






The Distinguished Scholar Award recognizes faculty who have made outstanding contributions in the areas of research, creativity, or other scholarly activities.  The award comes with a $1,000 prize.

Who is eligible:
All UM faculty. Creative and scholarly activities, basic research, and applied research will be given equal consideration.

Who may nominate:
Deans, department chairs, and faculty members.

The total scholarly contributions of the individual will be considered with respect to:

  • the quality and number of publications, and other forms of scholarship presentation;
  • direction of graduate students' research and their accomplishments;
  • honors, awards, and published comments on the validity and importance of the scholarship;
  • letters of support from other scholars in the discipline;
  • a record of receiving outside financial support, with particular emphasis on the nature of the projects and the selection process.

The $1,000 Distinguished Teaching Award is an extraordinary honor bestowed on those faculty who, regardless of rank, have exhibited a history of excellence in classroom teaching and have demonstrated a quality long-term impact upon their students.

Who is eligible:
Any tenured or tenure-track faculty member who has not previously received a Distinguished Teaching Award.

Who may nominate:
All UM faculty, deans and department chairpersons (no self-nominations.) Documentation may be compiled by the nominee, his or her chairperson, or any faculty member, although it is typically forwarded by the chair.

Unsuccessful nomination information from previous years may be made current and resubmitted.

The best letters of nomination tend to include specific detail that supports the generalizations made about teaching excellence.

Additional materials for selected finalists:

The Faculty Development Office Steering Committee will select up to four finalists for the award and solicit additional information for those candidates, including:

  • a list of courses taught.
  • teaching evaluations.
  • evidence of multiple strategies for good classroom teaching.
  • assessment plans that demonstrate student learning.
  • letters of support.
  • authored textbooks and laboratory manuals used outside UM.
  • authored papers on teaching techniques in education journals.
  • evidence of students' success following graduation.
  • presentations relative to teaching methods.
  • statement of nominee's teaching philosophy.
  • any other evidence of distinguished teaching.

The $1,000 Outstanding Faculty Advising Award recognizes a faculty member who has contributed substantially to excellence in undergraduate academic advising.

Who is eligible:
All faculty advisers.

Nominations for this award are evaluated using guidelines developed by the National Academic Advising Association. Advising excellence includes evidence of the following characteristics:

  • current knowledge of university policies.
  • effective interpersonal skills.
  • demonstration of a caring attitude toward students.
  • adequate time devoted to student advising.
  • referral of students to appropriate sources of assistance.
  • understanding of student concerns from a student point of view.
  • provision of long-range educational planning and immediate problem-solving.
  • willingness to share advising skills with colleagues.
  • continuing to improve the style and substance of the advising role.
  • advising for special populations (foreign, minority, undecided, special programs).
  • attendance at and support of adviser development programs.
  • number of years as an active academic adviser.

Who may nominate:
Department chairs, faculty colleagues and students.

The Outstanding Mentoring Award will be granted annually to a faculty member who has contributed substantially to the career development and retention of one or more untenured but tenure-track faculty members. The $1,000 award will recognize the importance that mentoring of new faculty plays in promoting the success of individual untenured faculty as well as developing inclusive communities of scholars within the University.

Who is eligible:
Tenure-track or tenured faculty members.

Who may nominate:
Any faculty member.

Submit a letter of no more than two pages addressing why the nominee is an outstanding mentor. An outstanding mentor may:

  • provide useful advice concerning tenure expectations;
  • provide opportunities for collaborative work, either directly or by connection to others;
  • be a "safe" individual who will listen and then assist in solving problems;
  • provide useful assistance in completion of writing tasks such as proposals or manuscripts;
  • provide useful advice concerning the balance between work and home life;
  • provide guidance on when to say "yes" to the many requests faculty members receive and when (and how) to say "no."
  • assist in many other ways. (Tell us about them!)

The Academic Administrator Award recognizes outstanding performance in the fulfillment of assigned responsibilities. The Award comes with a $1,000 prize.

Who is eligible:
Chairs of academic departments or directors of academic programs.

Who may nominate:
Any member of the University community.

The J.B. Speer Award for Distinguished Administrative Service honors an administrator who has made an extraordinary commitment and contribution to The University of Montana.  The award comes with a $2,000 prize.

Who is eligible:
Nonacademic administrators who have served the University for five years or longer.  Please see the following list of eligible candidates.

Who may nominate:
Any member of the University community.

Selection process:
Recommendation from a steering committee.

The Graduate Teaching Award was established by the UM Center for Teaching Excellence, the Graduate School, and the Office of the Provost to honor outstanding teaching by a graduate teaching assistant. Winners receive $1,000.

Who is eligible:
Graduate teaching assistants.

Who may nominate:
A department, class or student in the nominee's class. Documentation may be compiled by the nominee, or the nominator, and forwarded.