How Tufts Selects Honorary Degree Recipients

An honorary degree presented at Commencement represents a unique and highly visible statement of Tufts University’s regard for the recipient. Each year, Tufts encourages faculty, staff, students and alumni to nominate distinguished individuals for honorary degrees. An email invitation soliciting nominations was sent to all members of the Tufts community in the late spring of 2014 and again in early September.

In accordance with the bylaws of the Board of Trustees, the Honorary Degree Committee, a standing committee of the board, reviews all nominations and may vote to recommend nominations for approval by the full board.

The committee and board consider nominations in the context of the Tufts’ commitment to education, research and scholarship, and active citizenship. Honorees are selected based on their contributions at the highest level of their field. They will have a record of distinguished and sustained accomplishment in the varied academic, scholarly and professional fields represented at Tufts; business and industry; the visual, literary, musical, and performing arts; or public life. A significant contribution to the educational mission of Tufts may be an additional qualification.

The university community is notified of the year’s honorary degree awardees once they have been approved and have accepted the invitation to attend commencement in May. Additional information about nominations and deliberations of the committee and the board is held in confidence.