Guidelines - Reward and Recognition

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Guidelines List | Forms | Procedures


The University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) has a variety of programs to recognize and reward employees with non-cash and with cash awards. These awards recognize employees whose performance is above and beyond the scope of their position and their achievements add value to the vision and mission of UNMC. All University-wide, UNMC campus-wide and Unit/department-wide recognition and reward programs are based on the availability of funds at each level.


Employee Recognition and Reward Policy #1093

Employee Recognition and Reward Procedures

Gold U Award

The Gold U Award recognizes members of the UNMC community who consistently deliver outstanding performance and service to UNMC. Managerial professional and office service employees are eligible for the Chancellor’s Commendation Gold ‘U’ Award. Faculty and administrative staff are not eligible for this award.

Gold U Nomination Form

Faculty Awards - UNMC

Outstanding Faculty Mentor of Graduate Students

Because of the profound effects of mentors on graduate students, the UNMC Faculty Senate wishes to recognize faculty who exemplify excellence in the mentoring of graduate students at UNMC. In doing so UNMC wishes to honor these individuals to provide models for other faculty to emulate. The Honorary Degree and Awards Committee (HDAC) bases its selection of recipients for the award on documentation that provides evidence of and a record of continuous accomplishment of mentoring graduate students over a period of at least the last five years.

The Outstanding Faculty Mentor of Graduate Students Award Nomination Form and Selection Criteria

Outstanding Teaching Award

Nominations should clearly substantiate a meritorious record of excellence in teaching activities by the nominee at UNMC. Honorary Degree and Awards Committee (HDAC) bases its selection of recipients for the awards on documentation that clearly provides evidence of and a track record of outstanding teaching.

Outstanding Teaching Award Nomination Form and Selection Criteria

Spirit of Community Service Award

This merit award is presented to a faculty member who, through continuing commitment to the surrounding underserved or isolated communities has used expertise, resources, talent, and time without remuneration or has enabled others to provide community service in the following types of programs/projects. The Honorary Degree and Awards Committee (HDAC) bases its selections of recipients for the award on documentation that provides evidence of and a record of accomplishment of continuous community service within the last three years.

The Spirit of Community Service Award Nomination Form and Selection Criteria

Faculty Awards - University-Wide

Outstanding Research and Creativity Award (ORCA)

This award honors members of the University of Nebraska faculty who have conducted outstanding research or creative activity of national/international significance

Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award (ORCA)

Outstanding Teaching and Creativity Award (OTICA)

This award honors members of the University of Nebraska faculty who have developed meritorious and sustained records of excellence in teaching and creativity related to teaching.

Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creativity Award (OTICA)

University-wide Departmental Teaching Award (UDTA)

This award honors a department/unit of the University of Nebraska which has outstanding esprit de corps in its dedication to the education of students at the undergraduate, graduate, or professional levels.

University-wide Departmental Teaching Award (UDTA)

Engagement Award (IDEA)

This awards honors members of the University of Nebraska faculty who have extended their academic expertise beyond the boundaries of the university in ways that have enriched the broader community.

Innovation, Development and Engagement Award (IDEA)

Outstanding Performance Stipends

The Outstanding Performance Stipend is intended to recognize and reward outstanding employee performance with discretionary cash rewards. The program is funded through a set aside of 0.25% of the annual salary increase pool. The maximum amount any individual may receive is $1,250; awards may be given from August 1 through April 30 in a fiscal year, in recognition of sustained performance exceeding expectations.

Outstanding Performance Stipends Guidelines Fiscal Year 2018-19

Research/Scientist Awards

Faculty are eligible for the UNMC Scientist Laureate Award, the Distinguished Scientist Award and the New Investigator Award. The award recipients are selected by a panel composed of UNMC deans and directors, as well as the office of the vice chancellor for research. These awards are sponsored by the Chancellor and administered by UNMC Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research. For additional information contact the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research at 559-6162.

The UNMC Scientist Laureate Award

This award is the highest recognition given to a UNMC investigator. Criteria for the award include the researcher’s history of leading outstanding research program(s), publishing research results in journals of the highest quality, and showing the ability to attract and retain additional funding. research.

The Distinguished Scientist Award

Criteria for the award include the researcher’s history of leading outstanding research program(s), publishing research results in journals of the highest quality, and showing the ability to attract and retain additional funding during the past 5 years.

The New Investigator Award

This award is given to outstanding UNMC scientists who in the past one to three years have secured their first federal funding from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense or other federal sources. The recipients also have to demonstrate scholarly activity such as publishing their research and/or presenting their findings at national conventions and gatherings.

Service Awards

Length of Service Awards are based solely on the number of years of employment in the University of Nebraska system and are given in 5-year increments for staff (managerial professional and office service) and 10 year increments for faculty. Employees receive an anniversary gift in recognition to their service.

Silver U Award Program

This award is given monthly to employees whose overall performance is above and beyond the scope of their position. The number of recipients from each unit is based on unit population (please review deadlines and allocations document below). Recipients receive a Silver 'U' pin, a shirt with program logo, and will be invited to lunch with the chancellor. Managerial professional, office service, graduate assistant, other academic employees, faculty and administrative staff are eligible for the Chancellor’s Council Silver ‘U’ Award.

Silver U Award Nomination Form

People Are Everything – UNMC Reward and Recognition website

People Are Everything is UNMC’s comprehensive web-based reward and recognition platform that allows employees to acknowledge, reward and recognize their colleagues in many different ways. The platform includes internal social media, peer-to-peer recognition and eCards. In addition, the online program is used to submit Silver U and Gold U nominations and to acknowledge Service Anniversaries. Employees will be able to receive and send points to each other and the points can be redeemed for quality merchandise and gifts via the website. Points never expire and there are no limits on how many you can redeem in year.

To send a Vital Thank 'U' Gram

People Are Everything