Nominations open for 2009 honorary degree recipients

York University is seeking the community’s help in nominating potential honorary degree recipients for York’s 50th anniversary year in 2009.

"We are keen to make a strong statement in our 2009 convocations that York is a university with global reach and impact," says University Secretary & General Counsel Harriet Lewis. "Even as we finish one successful convocation season, we need to turn our attention to our 50th anniversary and consider the individuals that the University might honour in this celebratory year."

As stated in York’s Honorary Degrees: Guidelines and Constraints, revised in 2001, careful consideration is given to candidates for honorary degrees who have made a significant contribution to the public good.

The following criteria will be considered, though candidates are not expected to meet all criteria:

  • eminence in their field of activity;
  • service to humankind, Canada, Ontario, York University or a particular community in a significant way;
  • significant benefaction to the University;
  • public contributions to society worthy of emulation.

Any member of the York University community can nominate an eminent individual or anyone fitting some of the above criteria from any walk of life – it is not essential that they have an existing connection to York to be nominated. Nominations should be sent by early fall to be considered in the Senate Sub-committee on Honorary Degrees and Ceremonials’ evaluations. The nominations are then passed to York’s president and chancellor for final selection. The process is strictly confidential to protect the nominators and the nominees, so it is important that the nominee not be aware their name has been put forward.

To nominate an individual, complete the nomination form on the York University Secretariat Web site. Nomination forms should be sent to or or by hard copy c/o the Secretary, Honorary Degrees and Ceremonials, University Secretariat, Keele campus.