Honorary Degree Criteria

An honorary degree is one of higher education’s most significant accolades. The conferring of such degrees also enables colleges and universities a very public manner through which to express their values and aspirations and, as such, reflects on the community on whose behalf it is awarded. The policy of Juniata College is to award honorary degrees through a selective process that includes input from representatives of the faculty, the student body, and the administration, prior to making a recommendation to the College’s Board of Trustees. In general, the expectation is that the College will recommend to the Board nominations of individuals who have achieved the highest levels of distinction in their professional, civic, philanthropic, creative, or spiritual lives.

The Juniata College Board of Trustees has sole authority to confer honorary degrees, doing so with the assistance of the College. In deliberating whether to award an honorary degree to an individual recommended to them, the Board of Trustees will weigh factors the College should address in its recommendation materials. Among them, the Board will consider the impact of the recommended individual’s accomplishments, how the individual’s achievements reflect the mission of Juniata College, the degree to which the individual’s presence on campus will contribute to thoughtful and challenging discourse, and how recognizing the individual will provide visibility for the College and learning opportunities for its students.

You may provide recommendations for future honorary degree candidates by contacting President Jim Troha.