Help Center: Alumni Awards & Recognition

The Volunteer Recognition section of this site includes details on these recognition programs for alumni leaders and organizations, as well as an historical list of winners and links to nomination forms where applicable.

The Yale Medal

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The Yale Medal is the highest award given for outstanding service to Yale. The medal is given in recognition of extensive, exemplary voluntary service on behalf of Yale as a whole or any of its many schools, institutes or programs.

The Yale Medal is awarded once a year during the YAA Assembly to up to five persons. Winners must be able to attend the Yale Medal dinner in November to receive their medals.

The award may be given to alumni or friends of the university. It is not intended as recognition for career accomplishments, service to society, or employees of the university.

The Yale Alumni Association awards the Yale Medal. A nominating committee selects a slate for presentation to and approval by the YAA Board of Governors. Public announcements are made through various media over the course of the summer and fall.  

The nomination form is available year-round and anyone may submit a nomination. The deadline for each year's selection is typically late March.

For further questions about the Yale Medal, please see this page or click here to contact us by email.

YAA Board of Governors Excellence Awards

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The YAA Board of Governors Excellence Awards aim to recognize alumni organizations for excellence in their events, programs, and best practices for Yale and on behalf of Yale. These awards recognize groups such as Yale College Classes, regional clubs, interest groups, and Graduate and professional school associations, and complement those for individual volunteers, such as the Yale Medal and the YAA Leadership Awards.

Nominations may be submitted by anyone who is familiar with the programs and activities of the relevant alumni group.

Awards are chosen by the YAA Board's Volunteer Leadership committee.

Read more about the selection process and criteria, and access the nomination form from this page.

YAA Volunteer Leadership Awards

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With this award, YAA staff recognize the accomplishments of outstanding volunteers. Staff are responsible for nominating and selecting alumni leaders with whom they have worked.

The YAA Volunteer Leadership Awards are given out at the annual YAA Assembly and Alumni Fund Convocation.

Yale Jefferson Award

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The Yale Jefferson Awards annually honor (i) a Yale undergraduate, (ii) a student at one of Yale’s professional or graduate schools, and (iii) an alumna/us for their service to the greater good.

The awards are presented annually during the YAA Assembly and Alumni Fund Convocation in November.

To submit a nomination, please use this form.

To be considered for the Yale Jefferson Award, candidates must have a demonstrated involvement in a Yale service project or make substantial use of Yale resources for an outside service project. This may include involvement in a variety of existing alumni enterprises: Yale College classes, regional Yale clubs, shared interest groups, graduate and professional alumni associations, Yale Alumni Service Corps, Yale Day of Service, etc. Alternatively, award candidates may demonstrate their involvement through Yale-related channels other than those already in existence.

The Howard R. Lamar Faculty Award

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Inaugurated in 2014, the Howard R. Lamar Faculty Award honors outstanding individual service by faculty members to the alumni of Yale University. Honorees are judged to have demonstrated leadership and commitment to serving alumni through a wide range of programs, initiatives, and activities.

The award is presented to honorees by the YAA Board of Governors.

The Howard R. Lamar Faculty Awards are selected by a committee of the YAA Board of Governors.

For more information, and information about past winners, please click here.

Yale Class Awards

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Yale College Class Distinguished Service awards are bestowed at 5-year reunions to recognize and thank classmates who have dedicated time, energy and enthusiasm to their respective class.  Awardees are selected by the class leadership.

Please see this page for more information.

Yale Club Recognition Awards

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The Yale Club Recognition Award provides an opportunity for regional clubs to publicly honor members for their dedication to Yale through local volunteer activity. It is given by the Yale Club (not directly by the YAA) for “outstanding leadership and service” at the regional club level.

See this page for more information.