The University Awards are among the most prestigious awards presented at KU. These awards were established to recognize students who embody service excellence, dedication, or whose academic achievements remain stellar.
Agnes Wright Strickland Award
Established in 1953 in memory of Agnes Wright Strickland, member of the class of 1887. The award, which consists of a lifetime membership in the University of Kansas Alumni Association, is given annually in the spring to a graduating KU senior in recognition of a good academic record, demonstrated leadership in matters of University concern, respect among fellow students, and indications of future dedication to services at the University.
Alexis F. Dillard Student Involvement Award
Presented to a graduating KU senior who has unselfishly contributed to the University through active campus involvement. This award was established in 1993 by family and friends to remember and honor Alexis F. Dillard.
Presented to a graduating KU senior who has displayed outstanding leadership, strength of character, and respect for the University of Kansas and its students. The award was the senior class gift from the Class of 2000.
Caryl K. Smith Student Leader Award
Presented to a graduating KU senior fraternity man or sorority woman with high academic achievement, who has demonstrated involvement with, and commitment to, their chapter, the national organization, the KU Greek Community, the University and the Lawrence community. All nominees must have a minimum 3.5 grade point average. This award was established by the Panhellenic Association in 1993 in honor of Caryl K. Smith’s dedication and support of the University of Kansas Greek community during her tenure as Dean of Student Life.
Class of 1913 Award
Established by the Class of 1913 the award is given annually to given annually to two graduating KU seniors who by their evidenced intelligence, devotion to studies, and personal character gives promise of usefulness to society.
Donald K. Alderson Memorial Award
Presented to a graduating KU senior who has demonstrated loyalty to and interest in the University and who has been an active participant in student activities and services of benefit to other students. This award was established in memory of Donald K. Alderson, former Dean of Men and Dean of Student Services.
Kathryn Nemeth Tuttle Student Scholar Award
Presented to a graduating KU senior scholarship hall resident (currently residing in a scholarship hall). Recipients shall have demonstrated academic focus (minimum GPA 3.75 on 4.0 scale), leadership in their scholarship hall and also commitment to the University of Kansas and the Lawrence community. The recipient should be an exceptional representative of what distinguishes the KU scholarship hall student: commitment both to academic excellence and the cooperative ideal of the scholarship hall system at the University of Kansas.
Rusty Leffel Concerned Student Award
Presented to a current KU student who has demonstrated who has demonstrated through their actions a real concern for furthering the ideals of the University and of higher education. The Award was established by a group of students, faculty and staff 1973 to honor their friend and fellow student, Rusty Leffel. Any classification of student is eligible.
Each recipient is recognized during a surprise in-class presentation, and the award recipients’ photos are included in the Commencement Program.