Awards & Recognition

Awards & Recognition

Promote your accomplishments and celebrate your excellence

UMass Amherst faculty do extraordinary things and garner well-deserved recognition for their accomplishments. Find here links to recipients of campus-level awards as well as national and international honors bestowed on UMass Amherst faculty.

Campus-level Awards Conferred at UMass Amherst

Chancellor’s Leadership Fellowship

The Chancellor’s Leadership Fellowship (CLF) program seeks to cultivate future campus leaders by offering a half-time, one-year temporary appointment to an administrative area on campus, and providing mentoring from the leaders of the host units. During the year, Fellows are expected to launch a significant program. Chancellor’s Leadership Fellows also engage with their cohort through a mutual mentoring group of Fellows.

College Outstanding Teaching Award (COTA)

The College Outstanding Teaching Award (COTA) recognizes excellence in teaching and honors individual faculty members at each of the university’s colleges for their instructional accomplishments. The COTA was instituted as a complement to the campus-wide Distinguished Teaching Award.

Distinguished Community Engagement Awards

Distinguished Community Engagement Awards for Research and Teaching recognize individuals within our campus community for their outstanding contributions to community-engaged scholarship and teaching with impacts at the local, regional, national, or international level.

Distinguished and Endowed Professorships

Distinguished and Endowed Professorships are awarded by the Board of Trustees to full professors at UMass Amherst for outstanding national or international contributions in research, teaching, and/or public service.

Distinguished Faculty Lecture Series & Chancellor’s Medal

Established in 1974, the annual Distinguished Faculty Lecture is dedicated to acknowledging the work of our most esteemed and accomplished faculty members. The lecture series not only honors individual faculty members and their achievements, but also celebrates the values of academic excellence that we share as a community. Each honoree is presented with the Chancellor’s Medal, the highest recognition bestowed upon faculty by the campus.

Distinguished Teaching Award

The DTA honors exemplary teaching at the highest institutional level. The highly competitive and prestigious campus-wide Distinguished Teaching Award (DTA) program has been honoring teaching excellence on the UMass Amherst campus for over 30 years.

HERS Leadership Institute

HERS (Higher Education Resource Services) is a leadership development and research organization that is dedicated to creating and sustaining a diverse network of women-identified leaders in higher education. The University of Massachusetts Amherst supports the development of women leaders from the faculty and staff by supporting their participation in the HERS Leadership Institute, a transformational leadership development program for women in higher education.

Manning Prize for Excellence in Teaching

The Manning Prize for Excellence in Teaching honors one outstanding faculty member from each of the five campuses of the University of Massachusetts. This competitive prize is presented to faculty members who demonstrate excellence in teaching along with exemplary dedication to students and the campus community. President Marty Meehan will host a luncheon celebrating the achievements of the selected faculty members, each presented with a $10,000 award.

Mellon Faculty Leadership Development Program

The Five College Mellon Faculty Leadership Development Program provides intensive training and support for emergent and established leaders in the humanities. The Program prepares humanities faculty at Five Colleges' member institutions (Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith Colleges, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst) to take on leadership roles by developing their administrative leadership skills.

Mid-Career Post-Tenure Fellowship

This competitively awarded fellowship provides a research-intensive semester to Associate Professors who have had their progress toward promotion to Full Professor slowed due to service or teaching responsibilities that have exceeded the norm. In accordance with the collective bargaining agreement between UMass Amherst and the Massachusetts Society of Professors, award recipients shall be provided with one semester of release from teaching responsibilities, department obligations, and college service.

Outstanding Accomplishments in Research and Creativity

The Award for Outstanding Accomplishments in Research and Creative activity was created by the Chancellor in 2005.  It honors faculty members who have earned national and/or international recognition in their field for outstanding achievement in the previous three years. This award was last conferred in 2017.

Professional Improvement Leave Fellowships

Professional Improvement Leave Fellowships provide a one-semester release for select non-tenure track faculty who have achieved the rank of Senior Lecturer or above or have six or more years of full-time equivalent service in an Extension or Clinical title. Professional Improvement Leave Fellowships support professional improvement activities that directly relate to the faculty member’s job responsibilities and/or advance important initiatives for their department or college.

Provost Professor

The title of "Provost Professor" recognizes exceptional achievement in research or creative activity, and in teaching. The honorific is designated for tenure-system faculty who hold the rank of professor and are not already in a named or distinguished professorship. The honorific is conferred at the Annual Convocation or Faculty Awards Dinner and includes an awards package.

Samuel F. Conti Award

A University of Massachusetts Amherst Samuel F. Conti Faculty Fellowship provides faculty members with a unique opportunity to focus on their research or creative activities. These Fellowships are managed by the office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Engagement (VCRE) and provide a one-year release from teaching and service duties in addition to a cash award.

Spotlight Scholars

Scholars are UMass Amherst faculty members who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in research, scholarship or creative activity

International and National Awards

International and national awards for faculty include the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellows.