Honorary Degree Policy
Approved by the Board of Trustees of Rockland Community College on January 21, 2010
Policy for Awarding of Rockland Community College Degrees:
Awarded by the Rockland Community College Board of Trustees, the honorary associate's degree is the highest form of recognition offered by Rockland Community College to persons of exceptional distinction.
- To honor meritorious and outstanding service to the College and/or to the community at large; and
- To recognize persons whose lives serve as examples of the College's aspirations for its students.
- Individual who has made a significant, noteworthy contribution to Rockland Community College and/or to the community at large.
- Individual who has demonstrated an enduring commitment of commendable service to Rockland Community College.
- Current faculty, staff, and trustees are not eligible. Faculty, staff, and trustees who have been separated from the College for at least five years are eligible.
- Generally the College will award no more than two honorary degrees in any academic year.
C. The Nature of the Honorary Degree:
The Board of Trustees shall award all honorary degrees in the name of the State University of New York. As authorized by law the State University Board of Trustees has selected to offer the following registered honorary degrees:
- Associate in Arts (A.A.)
- Associate in Science (A.S.)
- Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.)
The specific honorary degree awarded shall be appropriate to the nature of the attainment which is being recognized. The following are areas in which individuals may have made significant contributions:
- Educational Service: recognizing outstanding service that enhances educational opportunities for the area or that gives personal assistance that leads to the success of individuals in higher education.
- Humanitarian Service: recognizing outstanding altruism that enhances the quality of life for others in the area
- Servant Leadership: recognizing outstanding service that goes "the second mile" beyond the servant's paid job description in any area of leadership and that benefits others and/or enhances their leadership capabilities.
- Arts and Letters: recognizing outstanding contributions to the arts in any form that enhances the quality of life in the area.
- Entrepreneurial Leadership: recognizing outstanding contributions to business/industry through creative start-ups of new enterprises or through innovative management or business or industry.
D. Awarding of Honorary Degrees
Honorary degrees shall be conferred by the Board of Trustees at commencement exercises.
- Honorary degrees shall be bestowed by the College President, the Chair of the Board of Trustees, or a Trustee designated by the Chair.
- Honorary degrees may be awarded in absentia and posthumously, but only upon recommendation to the Board of Trustees by the College President in the case of extraordinary and compelling circumstances.
E. Procedures for the Selection of Degree Recipients
The Rockland Community College Board of Trustees awards honorary degrees based on a recommendation from the College President. Coordination of the selection and nomination process for honorary degree recipients is the responsibility of the College President who shall consult with an advisory committee that includes representatives from the Faculty Senate and administrative staff.
Nominations for degree recipients shall be encouraged from any member of the College community, including students, faculty, staff, alumni, trustees, board members and friends of the College. Nominations should be submitted to the President of the institution with a résumé, letter of support, and a completed nomination form.
Procedures for the Selection of Honorary Degree Recipients
1. Nominations Process:
Nominations for honorary degree recipients will be accepted from any member of the College community, including students, faculty, staff, alumni, trustees, board members and friends of the College.
Each nomination must include the nomination form (Attachment A) with a resume and letter of support. Nomination forms may be obtained from the Office of the President or the College website.
2. Nominations Deadline:
Nominations must be submitted to the College President no later than the last day of classes in the Fall semester. For the first year, nominations may be submitted until February 1, 2010.
3. Honorary Degree Advisory Committee:
Coordination of the selection and nomination process for honorary degree recipients is the responsibility of the College President who shall consult with an advisory committee. The Honorary Degree Advisory Committee will be comprised of:
- Two (2) representatives from the Faculty Senate
- One (1) representative from the Student Government Association
- One (1) representative from the Rockland Community College Alumni Association
- One (1) representative from the Rockland Community College Foundation
The nomination process is competitive. Generally the College will award no more than two honorary degrees in any academic year.
The primary function of the Honorary Degree Advisory Committee is to review all nominations received by the deadline and make a recommendation to the College President. The Honorary Degree Advisory Committee will intensely scrutinize the nomination package for each nominee to insure continued integrity of the award process.
Generally, the Honorary Degree Advisory Committee will review nominations in January and make a recommendation to the College President no later than February 1st.
4. President's Responsibilities:
In order to insure that any recipient receives ample notice, the College President will make a recommendation to the Rockland Community College Board of Trustees for review and consideration at the February meeting.
The Rockland Community College Board of Trustees awards honorary degrees.