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September 29, 1994


To the University faculty:

As you may be aware, Senate Council approved a process for identifying distinguished persons who the chancellor might invite to speak at University commencements or honors convocations and receive honorary degrees. The process, as outlined in the Senate Council Resolution, established a special committee to screen proposed candidates in order to develop a "pool" of distinguished speakers/honorees for consideration by the chancellor; it also recommends that the chancellor invite from the faculty nominations of possible speakers who could also be honored by the University.

The special committee, encompassing a broad base of faculty disciplinary representation from within the University, functions as the principal source of identifying persons who might be invited to speak at the University. The special committee also has the responsibility of recommending to the chancellor whether an honorary degree should be awarded. Before an honorary degree would be offered by the University, consultation with the appropriate school dean and departmental faculty would, of course, be sought.

Your suggestions of individuals of distinguished national or international prominence from your own area of expertise, as well as from other fields of endeavor, are invited for consideration by the special committee. Suggested criteria for the selection of speakers/honorees are as follows: He/she has attained eminence in a chosen field of scholarship or endeavor; has contributed to the further development of scholarship or field of endeavor through research/publications and/or leadership involvement in recognized professional associations/organizations; has been responsible for innovation in the discovery/dissemination of knowledge; and has a distinguished record of valuable public service and community leadership. Some of the recent honorary degree recipients include Arthur F. Burns, Rev. Theodore Hesburgh, Paul A. Volcker, Louis W. Sullivan, M.D., August Wilson, Thomas Starzl, M.D., Fred Rogers, and David McCullough.

You may submit your suggestion(s) directly to me, in care of the Office of Provost, 826 Cathedral of Learning. In order to expedite the work of the committee, your suggestions should reach my office no later than Oct. 21, 1994.

Vijai P. Singh

Chair, Special Committee

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