Awards for Mentoring Undergraduates

in Research, Scholarly and Creative Activities

The Office of the Provost offers awards to recognize the important role mentors play in fostering undergraduates’ intellectual, personal and professional growth through participation in high-impact practices including research, scholarly and creative endeavors. These awards provide faculty members, academic staff and graduate students with recognition for their excellence in mentoring undergraduates and their contribution to our students’ Wisconsin Experience. The awards provide $2,000 of university expendable funds.

Awards will be presented to recipients at the annual Undergraduate Symposium on April 12, 2019 in Union South.

Criteria and Requirements

  • Eligibility
    • Faculty members, academic staff members and graduate students are eligible.
    • Nominees should have (or recently have had) responsibility for mentoring at least one undergraduate student or a group of undergraduates.
    • Nominees can come from any discipline as long as they mentor undergraduates in a scholarly activity.
    • Nominees regularly exhibit several of the actions/characteristics listed below.
    • Awardees will be expected to attend the presentation of awards at the Friends & Family Reception on April 12, 2019, at the Undergraduate Symposium in Union South.
  • Nominees
    • Successfully learn about and integrate needs of the undergraduate scholar into their work
    • Support the undergraduate in his/her academic success beyond the shared scholarship experience – for example, have meaningful interactions related to professional development, beyond the scope of the student’s project responsibilities, and actively support the undergraduate’s academic and career aspirations
    • Provide access and support in helping the undergraduate present, perform, and/or publish his/her project in a professional setting
    • Maintain high expectations for undergraduate work and provide the undergraduate with a high level of support
    • View teaching as integral to mentoring
    • Give students autonomy and support in asking and exploring new questions
    • Have a consistent track record of successful outcomes for undergraduates from a variety of backgrounds who worked in the group (presentation at professional conferences, publication, admission to graduate/professional school, etc.)
    • Maintain active and continued mentorship after the students leave the group (e.g., keep in touch and support students as they move through their careers)
  • Nomination Materials
    • One-page letter from the nominee’s department chair or unit director making or endorsing the nomination and describing the nominee’s approach to mentoring
    • A minimum of one letter of support (maximum of 5 letters) from an undergraduate mentee describing the mentor’s qualities
    • One letter of support from a colleague, supervisor, or outside organization who can speak to the nominee’s mentoring excellence and mentoring philosophy
    • Short CV (1-2 pages) of the nominee

Award Recipients

  • 2019 Awardees

    College of Agricultural and Life Sciences

    • Nick Balster, professor, Department of Soil Science

    School of Education

    • Haley Vlach, professor, Department of Educational Psychology

    College of Engineering

    • Dane Morgan, professor, Department of Materials Science and Engineering

    School of Medicine and Public Health

    • Saswati Bhattacharya, associate scientist, Division of Hematology, Medical Oncology and Palliative Care

    College of Letters and Science

    • Sarah Bruno, graduate student, Department of Anthropology
    • Katharine Scott, graduate student, Department of Psychology
  • 2018 Awardees

    College of Agricultural & Life Sciences

    • Michael Cox, professor, Department of Biochemistry
    • Quinn Langdon, graduate student, Department of Genetics

    College of Letters & Science

    • Richard Barker, assistant scientist, Department of Botany
    • Keisha Lindsay, professor, Department of Gender and Women’s Studies

    Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies

    • Tracey Holloway, professor

    School of Human Ecology

    • Erica Hess, graduate student, Department of Design Studies
  • 2017 Awardess

    College of Agricultural & Life Sciences

    • Sarah Botham, faculty associate, Department of Life Sciences Communication

    College of Letters & Science

    • Daniel Bradford, research assistant, Department of Psychology
    • Silvia Cavagnero, professor, Department of Chemistry

    School of Education

    • Edward Hubbard, professor, Department of Educational Psychology

    School of Nursing

    • Maichou Lor, PhD candidate
  • 2016 Awardees

    College of Letters & Science

    • Allyson Bennett, professor Department of Psychology
    • Antony Stretton, professor, Department of Zoology
    • Marissa Kraynak, PhD candidate, Department of Zoology
    • Tonya Buckingham, assistant director, UW Cartography Lab, Department of Geography

    School of Medicine and Public Health

    • Aditya Rayasam, PhD candidate, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
    • Jack Jiang, professor, Department of Surgery
  • 2015 Awardees

    College of Agricultural & Life Sciences

    • Autumn Sabo, PhD candidate, Department of Forestry and Wildlife Ecology
    • Walter Goodman, professor, Department of Entomology

    College of Engineering

    • Jacob Walsh, PhD candidate, Freshwater and Marine Sciences Program

    College of Letters & Science

    • Sara McKinnon, professor, Department of Communication Arts
    • Saverio Spagnolie, professor, Department of Mathematics

    School of Medicine and Public Health

    • Dr. Sivan Meethal, Department of Neurological Surgery
  • 2014 Awardees

    College of Letters & Science

    • R. Claude Woods, professor, Department of Chemistry
    • Ryan Owens, professor, Department of Political Science

    School of Medicine and Public Health

    • Craig Atwood, professor, Department of Geriatrics and Adult Development

Nomination Deadline

This year’s nomination deadline has passed. Check back in the fall for the 2019-20 academic year deadline.


Laurie Mayberry
Assistant Vice Provost

Steven Cramer
Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning