UIC Distinguished Professors
The UIC Distinguished Professorship is created to recruit and recognize persons who have made a significant impact upon their field through scholarship, creativity, and leadership. This program shall facilitate the recruitment of the most distinguished scholars in the world.
2021-22 Guidelines for the UIC Distinguished Professorship
2022-23 Guidelines coming in November 2021.
Eligibility & Nominations
- Criteria for appointment as a UIC Distinguished Professor are discipline specific. Standards of excellence are not the same for a physical scientist, a creative artist, or a social scientist, for example.
- The criteria used for nomination and appointment within an academic field must be ones that recognize only the highest level of attainment in the field. The specification of such criteria and verification that the nominee’s work meets or exceeds them is a major responsibility of the person(s) nominating scholars for consideration as UIC Distinguished Professors. The criteria should reflect recognition of:
- Outstanding scholarly/creative contributions.
- Widely regarded leadership status within the nominee’s field.
- Recognition by arbiters of the highest level of intellectual eminence, for example, the National Academy of Sciences, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, or the National Academy of Engineering.
- Nominations of women and underrepresented minority faculty are strongly encouraged.
- Two routes of appointment of UIC Distinguished Professor are envisioned.
- Recruitment of scholars from outside UIC. External nominees will be reviewed, as needed, at any time during the academic year, but must have prior Board of Trustees approval before they become effective.
- Appointment of current UIC faculty. Internal nominees will be reviewed once a year, followed by Board of Trustees approval.
- Nominations may originate from any academic unit at UIC. Whether nominations originate from a department, college, administrative office, or an individual faculty, the path of the nomination must follow the same pattern. The nomination will first be considered in the department or area of UIC where tenure is or would be held by the nominee. The department or area forwards the recommendation to the Dean. The Dean, with the approval of the college executive committee, submits the nomination to the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs.
- All nominations will be reviewed by a panel of UIC Distinguished Professors appointed by the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs. The panel will forward recommendations to the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs.
The review panel will make its determinations based on the following required nomination materials, which must be included with all nominations. Conciseness and brevity are encouraged. Failure to supply all required materials may result in a returned application requiring further clarification and additions.
- Required Checklist – Checklist must be submitted as the first page of the nomination packet
- Letter of support from Department Head to the Dean
- Nominators should keep in mind that nomination materials will be reviewed at the campus level by a panel of faculty from differing disciplines, i.e., non-specialists. For this reason, nominators are required to include a description of what criteria are especially important for defining excellence and national eminence in the nominee’s field of learning.
- Letter of support from Dean to the Provost
- Nominee’s current curriculum vitae
- Letters of external review from leaders in the field explaining and documenting the national and international impact of the nominee’s work within his or her field of study. (A minimum of three letters are required from high-level experts/authorities in the field, both nationally and The letters must be detailed and must not be from previous collaborators, previous students, previous employers, or others who have worked closely with the nominee. Please include a short bio of each letter author).
- For colleges with multiple submissions, Deans must provide a letter of support for each nominee including rank order of nominees and a justification for those rankings.
- Please submit complete nomination packets at the link provided at the bottom of this webpage.
Term of Appointment
The appointment of UIC Distinguished Professors becomes effective on August 16 following notification of the award. This appointment is subject to approval by the Board of Trustees and is for the duration of awardee’s full-time tenure at UIC.
Faculty appointed as UIC Distinguished Professors will receive a one-time $5,000 award payment. This payment will be processed by the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs for direct deposit after the annual Faculty Award Ceremony and Reception.
UIC Distinguished Professors will be supported according to the negotiated conditions of appointment agreed to at the time of appointment. Department or area resources, college resources, and campus resources, in combination, must assure sufficient recurring funds to support the UIC Distinguished Professor according to the conditions of appointment agreed upon by the professor and relevant UIC administrators. It is not anticipated that there be a formula that must be met for support to be forthcoming for each appointment. Rather, the three campus units (department, college, university administration) must be considered as potential contributors to the professor’s support.
UIC Distinguished Professor Award recipients will be notified by the Chancellor’s Office by mid-summer.
Award recipients will be recognized at the Faculty Awards Ceremony and Reception held the last Wednesday of October.