316  Awarding Honorary Degrees

Approved by President
Effective Date: June 5, 2017
Responsible Division: Academic Affairs
Responsible Office:  University Provost
Responsible Officer:  University Provost

I. Purpose

Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU or University) authorizes the awarding of honorary degrees to recognize individuals whose extraordinary achievements have set a standard that distinguishes them and benefits MTSU and the communities they serve, as well as society.

The purpose for awarding honorary degrees is threefold:

A.  To honor persons whose careers reflect sustained and superlative achievement in teaching, research, scholarship, public service, leadership, volunteerism, and/or cultural affairs.

B.  To advance the educational missions, goals, and programs of MTSU by developing associations with persons who embody the same ideals, values, and aspirations.

C.  To inspire students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, and members of the local, national, and world communities to emulate such standards of excellence, integrity, and commitment to enhance the public good.

II. Criteria for Selection

A.  An honorary degree is special and is awarded only in exceptional circumstances. Therefore, no more than two (2) per year will be given. No individual will be allowed to receive more than one (1) honorary degree from MTSU.

B.  Current faculty and staff of the University and trustees of the Board of Trustees (Board) are not eligible. Faculty, staff, and trustees who have been separated from, respectively, the University or the Board at least three (3) years are eligible. Currently elected and/or appointed public officials and current candidates and/or nominees for public elective and/or appointed offices within the State of Tennessee are not eligible.

C.  The degree awarded will be named the Honorary Doctorate of (discipline name, such as Education, Business, etc.).

III. Procedures

A.  Nominations will be accepted from all sources. When there is a nomination, the President will form a selection committee to ensure continued integrity of the award process. The recipient must attend graduation to be awarded the honorary degree.

B.  Recommendations shall be made by a selection committee to the President. The committee shall be comprised of no less than fifty percent (50%) faculty but should include staff and administrators.

C.  The President must recommend the nominee for the honorary degree to the Board for approval. Upon approval by the Board, the President will notify the recipient of the honorary degree.

Forms: none.

Revisions: none.

Last Reviewed: November 2020.

References: none.