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Awards of Excellence

Congratulations to the 2020 Awards of Excellence Recipients!

The University of Toronto congratulates this year’s outstanding winners of the Awards of Excellence—incredible and inspiring faculty members, staff members and students who make the University, and often the world, a better place.

Read about this year’s outstanding award recipients

Read the citations

Portrait of Mark Lautens smiling.

Awards of Excellence winners in the news

Chemistry professor Mark Lautens, who won the Faculty Award in 2016 for his outstanding research, stellar teaching and creative community building, continues his winning ways. He has received an Alumni of Honour Award from his alma mater, the University of Guelph, and is the first Canadian to win the American Chemical Society’s creative research award for discovering new chemical processes. Congratulations!

Lana El Sanyoura speaks at a podium emblazoned with a carved wooden maple leaf.

Lana El Sanyoura (BSc 2020 VIC), who won the 2020 Moss Scholarship, was one of just four students from across Canada invited to Ottawa by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to deliver an address to the country's graduating class. Watch her inspiring talk now!

U of T's Most Distinguished Awards Program

Throughout its rich history, the University of Toronto has striven to promote and recognize excellence among its community members. The University of Toronto Alumni Association  (UTAA) has played an integral role in furthering this mission through its longstanding support of distinguished awards programs that acknowledge outstanding faculty, staff, students, and alumni. 

The prestigious Awards of Excellence program dates back to 1921 with the creation of the John H. Moss Scholarship, awarded to outstanding student leaders. In 1990 the Faculty Award and the Chancellor’s Award were added to the program. Since 1990, seven more distinct awards or scholarships recognizing exceptional students, faculty, and administrative staff members of the University have been launched; most recently, the Jill Matus Award for Excellence in Student Services. 

Though the criteria differ for each award, recipients all share a commitment to enhancing the university experience of their peers and leave a significant impact on the University through their efforts.

See past recipients

About The Awards of Excellence Student Scholarships

Awards of Excellence Scholarship Recipients are the leaders of their classes. Academically, they take advantage of the quality and breadth of learning and research opportunities provided by the University. Through leadership in athletics, student government, clubs and student groups, in addition to many leadership roles outside the university, they enhance the experiences of their peers by contributing to the development of diverse and strong student communities.

John H. Moss Scholarship

An up-to-$16,650 scholarship awarded to a graduating student in their final year in the Faculty of Arts & Science, and recognizing academic achievement and extra-curricular involvement.

Adel S. Sedra Distinguished Graduate Award

An up-to-$25,000 fellowship for doctoral candidates, recognizing academic achievement, extra-curricular leadership, and involvement in the life of the University.

About The Awards Of Excellence Faculty and Staff Awards

Each faculty and staff member honoured through the Awards of Excellence reflects the University’s vision of becoming a leader among the world’s best public teaching and research universities – in discovery, preservation and sharing of knowledge through its teaching and research, and in commitment to excellence and equity. Award recipients provide students with academically challenging and exciting, well-taught programs, ensure that the university community is sensitive to the diversity of its population and share their discovery and knowledge through public stewardship.

Carolyn Tuohy Impact On Public Policy Award

A prize of up to $2,000 recognizing excellence in teaching, research, and the impact of scholarship on public policy.

Chancellor's Award

Three prizes of $1,000 each for outstanding contributions by an administrative staff member.

Joan E. Foley Quality of Student Experience Award

A $1,000 award given to a student, alumnus/a, administrative staff or faculty member who has made significant contribution to improving the quality of academic or extra-curricular student life on campus.

Jill Matus Award for Excellence in Student Services

Up to two $1,200 awards given to administrative staff members who demonstrate excellence in the area of student life and student services, and whose contributions specifically go beyond the parameters and duties of their daily jobs.

Ludwik and Estelle Jus Memorial Human Rights Prize

Two prizes of up to $1,500 each recognizing positive and lasting contributions to education and action in the fight against discrimination. Faculty, staff, and students may be nominated for this award.

Northrop Frye Award

Two prizes of $2,000 each, one for faculty who have enhanced the student experience through innovative curriculum, and one for staff who have made significant contributions to the quality of the learning environment for students.

Vivek Goel Faculty Citizenship Award

An award of up to $2,500 given to a faculty member who has served the university with distinction in multiple leadership capacities, including committees, governance bodies and external organizations complementary to the university’s academic mission.