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Joan E. Foley Quality of Student Experience Award

Awards of Excellence

Joan E. Foley

Joan E. Foley

The Joan E. Foley Quality of Student Experience Award is a $1,000 prize presented annually by the University of Toronto Alumni Association (UTAA) to a student, alumnus/a, faculty or administrative staff member who has made a distinctive and lasting contribution to enhancing the quality of the undergraduate or graduate student experience at the University of Toronto. Award recipients are honoured at the annual Awards of Excellence ceremony held each Spring.

The lasting impact of the nominee’s contributions, specifically activities beyond the expectations and parameters of his/her job, must be clearly illustrated and explained in the covering letter and further reinforced in the supporting letters. Letters should be compelling and should demonstrate, through specific examples, the scalable and enduring impact of the nominee’s activities.

This is not a career award. The Joan E. Foley Award recognizes an individual who has clearly gone above and beyond the requirements of his/her job resulting in a broad and long-term positive impact on the quality of the student experience at the University.

    Who is Joan E. Foley?

      The award is a tribute to Professor Joan Foley’s legacy and dedication to improving the student experience on campus throughout her career at the University of Toronto, which spanned over 40 years. As a professor of psychology, Foley made teaching a priority, presenting her students with a richly complex and supportive experience in the classroom. Foley was also a distinguished leader in university administration, named the first female Provost at the University of Toronto and the first female Principal at the University of Toronto Scarborough, among other notable positions. Foley worked closely with students in order to promote an enriching overall educational experience, in and out of the classroom. Among many other accomplishments, Foley played a significant role in the development of co-operative programs and continued to be a key adviser on a variety of academic and community programs at the Scarborough campus. She also served as University Ombudsperson.

      Whom can I nominated for the Joan E. Foley Quality of Student Experience Award?

      Nominations for the Awards of Excellence may be made by any member of the University of Toronto community. Past recipients of an Award of Excellence may still be nominated for a different Award, provided they meet the eligibility criteria. An individual may only be nominated for one (1) award in any given year.

      In making its decision, the  award Selection Committee will take into account the nominee’s contribution in both the academic or extracurricular domain of student life. The nature, extent, degree and long-lasting impact of the nominee’s contribution to the quality of the student experience will be also assessed.

        What is the nomination deadline?

        Complete nomination packages must be sent in pdf form to Satpal McCaughey at and received by Wednesday, December 6, 2017.

        Should I inform the nominee that I wish to nominate them?

        Yes, it is recommended that the nominee be informed of the nomination.

        What nomination materials must I assemble?

        A complete nomination package for the Joan E. Foley Quality of Student Experience Award must include the following documents.

        • Completed nomination form
        • Covering letter from the nominator
        • Complete curriculum vitae for the candidate
        • One (1) letter from the nominee’s supervisor or department head endorsing the nomination
        • Three (3) letters from colleagues/peers/students
        What should be included in the covering letter?

        In their covering letter, nominators must address specifically the criteria noted above. In addition, candidates will be assessed in light of the University’s priorities of

        • offering students a personally and intellectually rewarding co-curricular and extracurricular learning experience “beyond the classroom”
        • involving students in the life of the city
        • seeking to ensure that students feel like valued members of the University community — resulting in a stronger affinity with the University as alumni
        What should be included in the letters of endorsement and support?

        Letters of support should come from individuals who have benefited from the nominee’s activities and contributions both within the academic setting as well as beyond the classroom.

         A letter of support signed by multiple individuals counts as one letter towards the total.

        May I include additional material?

        Do not submit more than the required number of documents/letters. Supplementary documents will not be considered.

        Who will view the letters of support? Can I have them returned to me?

        All letters of support are confidential and will be viewed by members of the Selection Committee only. Those who wish to view the letters for publicity or information purposes must first obtain permission from the individual who wrote the letter. Once submitted all application/nomination materials become property of University Advancement and cannot be returned to either the nominator or the applicant.

        What if I have not received all necessary documents or letters by the deadline?

        It is the responsibility of the nominator to ensure that nomination packages are complete. Incomplete nomination packages will not be considered by the Selection Committee.

        What is the procedure for resubmitting a nomination from a previous year?

        Nominations may be resubmitted up to three (3) consecutive years. Each resubmission must be accompanied by a new nomination form and nomination letter. It is the nominator‘s responsibility to contact all previous supporters for permission to carry forward letters of support.

        Unsuccessful nominations that exceed the three-year limit may be resubmitted after a one-year hiatus, provided that a new package is assembled. It is the responsibility of the nominator to retain copies of the complete nomination package for future reference or resubmissions.

        To resubmit a nomination, please email