SUNY Honorary Degrees

Baird Point with Lake La Salle at sunrise in April 2020. Photographer: Douglas Levere.

For our University at Buffalo community, the awarding of honorary degrees is a profound expression of our university’s commitment to pursuing a rigorous course of excellence across the disciplines.  By honoring those exemplary individuals whose achievements and contributions embody our university’s highest ideals of personal and professional excellence and service, we reaffirm our commitment to these ideals and their important role in guiding our academic enterprise.

Candidates for these degrees, therefore, must be selected with great care and deliberation.  Appropriate nominees will be distinguished by their extraordinary personal achievements and contributions, and their firm commitment to UB’s highest ideals for service and leadership.  Further, special care should be taken to demonstrate why the University at Buffalo, rather than any other SUNY institution, is most appropriate to confer this award upon the nominee.  Eligible candidates should be characterized by their statewide, national/international stature and whose accomplishments have impacted the University at Buffalo and Western New York communities, as well as on communities beyond our university and region.

Supporting materials to accompany the nomination form should thoroughly substantiate the claim that the nominee is an exceptional candidate for the recognition.  Appropriate supporting materials include the candidate’s curriculum vitae and biographical information, as well as lists of major awards and reviews and articles regarding the nominee’s work. Limited to 10 pages.

Complete nomination packets should be submitted to the Honorary Degree Committee in digital format as a single PDF file and may be delivered via email to Pat Kane at

Contact the Office for Faculty Affairs for additional instructional/procedural materials.