Employee Learning & Organizational Effectiveness

Awards and Recognition

Awards and Recognition

Employee awards and recognition are strategies employed by organizations to appreciate and celebrate the contributions, achievements, and outstanding performance of their employees. These programs are designed to motivate and inspire employees, fostering a positive work culture and reinforcing desired behaviors. Employee awards can take various forms, including certificates, plaques, trophies, or even monetary incentives. Recognition may be given for various accomplishments, such as meeting or exceeding targets, demonstrating leadership qualities, displaying innovation, or making a significant impact on the organization.

Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award

The Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award (CSEA) is designed to recognize the importance of the outstanding work of all university staff members who perform a wide range of critical functions for our university. Staff provide critical administrative support, support our research laboratories and education programs, serve our students, and offer important outreach programs throughout the state and beyond.

Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award (CSEA)


Annually up to 16 awards will be distributed based on 8 functional categories listed below, providing up to 2 awards per category.
Individual awards will be given based on the degree to which the nominee meets the four criteria:

  1. Demonstrates excellence in overall work performance.
  2. Puts forth an effort to improve self as well as to develop and recognize others.
  3. Exhibits initiative and creativity resulting in improved operating efficiency of the department and/or University.
  4. Enhances the reputation of the department and/or university.

Target Audience

All staff employees currently employed at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.


  • Nominee must be currently employed by a unit associated with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign*, with at least three years of permanent service or the equivalent (e.g., 100% appointment for three years or 50% appointment for six years) by the nomination deadline.
  • Must have a positive work record.
  • Must be an active employee at the time the awards are determined, which will be March.
  • May receive the award only once.
  • Must be a civil service or academic professional employee, staff who also have a zero percent modified faculty title are also eligible (i.e., teaching or research associate, lecturer, or instructor).

*University Systems office employees located in Urbana Champaign and employees of the UIC College of Nursing unit located in Urbana Champaign are not eligible for this award.

**Visiting Academic Professionals may qualify if they have at least three years of service or the equivalent.


  •  November-January: Nomination Form Open
  • January-March: Selection Committee Deliberations
  • March: Recipients Announced
  • April: Chancellor’s Award Reception

Award and Reception

Each winner of the CSEA award will be honored at a reception hosted by the Chancellor, receive a $1,500 (after taxes) and a commemorative award. They will also be featured virtually in either a podcast or video.

Nomination Process

Any current member of the campus community, i.e. faculty, staff or student, may nominate a staff employee who meets the eligibility requirements. Individuals are able to nominate themselves as well.

In the event of multiple nominations submitted for one employee, nominators will be contacted and asked to review all of the nominations for that individual, determining which will go forward as the ‘official’ nomination.

The Nomination form must address the four criteria listed below and specify the nominee’s functional category. Nominees will be evaluated against others within the same category. The functional categories are:

  1. Administrative & Public Engagement
  2. Clerical/Administrative Support
  3. Crafts & Trades
  4. Education/Extension
  5. Information Technology
  6. Research
  7. Service/Maintenance
  8. Student Services

IHR reserves the right to change the functional group if the title/description does not fit into the selected group. View a list and description of the CSEA functional categories.

Nomination Materials

 Statements to address each of the four nomination criteria (note there is a 500 word limit for each statement which is equal to one written page).

  • The name, department, functional category, and e-mail address for the nominee.
  • The nominator’s name, department, and e-mail address.
  • Nominators will receive an e-mail acknowledging receipt of their nomination.
  • After the first screening, if the nominee is chosen as a semi-finalist, nominators will be contacted to secure and then submit at least one, but no more than three, letters of support. Each letter of support should be no more than one page in length. A minimum of one of the letters must come from the nominee’s current employing unit head or his/her designee.

Nomination Form Link

Coming soon

Selection Committee

A selection committee, appointed by the Chancellor, will consist of:

  1. Two co-chairs will lead the committee. One co-chair will be a representative from Academic Professionals, and one will be from Civil Service staff.
  2. There will be one committee member from each of the functional categories listed above, as well as one each from the Council of Academic Professionals (CAP) and the Staff Advisory Council (SAC). Half of the voting committee members may be asked to serve two-year terms, providing some committee continuity.

The committee will select sixteen finalists to be recommended to the Chancellor for selection of the award. Members of the selection committee are not eligible for the award. A representative from IHR will staff the committee.

In addition to selecting finalists for the awards, the selection committee will be responsible for conducting an annual evaluation of the program in order that needed improvements be considered on an annual basis. The committee will also consider ways to encourage stronger participation from deans, directors, department heads, and across all units.

Previous Recipients

The Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award (CSEA) combines the former Chancellor’s Distinguished Staff Award (CDSA) and the Chancellor’s Academic Professional Excellence Award (CAPE). The CSEA is designed to recognize the importance of all university staff members who perform a wide range of functions. The new (2022-2023) program Increases the number of awards from 14 to 16, increases the amount of each award from $1,000 to $1,500. Under the new program, the Selection Committee Co-Chairs (one Academic Professional and one Civil Service) are voting members.

Video of winners

News Bureau article Sixteen Employees Honored with Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award


Contact Cheryl Hahn at 217-333-3101 or via email at ihr-cseaward@illinois.edu

Marjorie Beasley Scholarship

The Marjorie Beasley Scholarship is a unique opportunity for dependents of civil service employees at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign. Additionally, one scholarship per year may be awarded to a civil service employee. The program was designed to assist Civil Service employees and their dependents to achieve educational goals by providing selected recipients with financial assistance in their pursuit of an undergraduate degree at an accredited college or university with preference given to applicants attending the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign or Parkland College.

Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award (CSEA)

Target Audience

The program is designed for civil service employees and their dependents.



  1. Applicant must meet the IRS dependent definition of an individual who is a dependent of an employee who is currently employed full-time as a University of Illinois Urbana Champaign civil service employee or a University of Illinois System Office employee located at Urbana Champaign. Employee must have a minimum of three years of continuous full-time employment at the time of application
  2. Be an incoming full-time freshmen at an institution of higher education and who good academy standing or a continuing full time student who shows good academic standing while working toward an undergraduate degree.
  3. Recipients shall be selected based on financial need.
  4. Preference given to students who are attending the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign or Parkland College
  5. No more than one dependent from each household may receive an award in an award year
  6. Previous recipients may not apply.
  1. Currently employed full-time as a University of Illinois Urbana Champaign civil service employee or a University of Illinois System Office employee located at Urbana Champaign. Employee must have minimum of three years of continuous full-time employment at the time of application.
  2. Employee must be enrolled as a student in an institution of higher education.
  3. Continuing students must show good academic standing.
  4. Preference given to employees who are attending the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign or Parkland College
  5. No more than one employee from each household may receive an award in an award year.
  6. Previous recipients may not apply.

Recipient Award and Reception

Recipients will be asked to attend a presentation to receive a certificate and check.

* Recipients will be notified of the date and time of the presentation (typically in May). A recipient unable to attend the presentation must contact the committee. If a recipient makes no direct contact with the committee prior to the presentation, the scholarship is forfeited.

*Scholarship funds award to recipients who attend the University of Illinois are credited directly to the recipient’s’ student account.

In the event that a recipient is unable to enter or return to school in the fall semester immediately following the receipt of this scholarship, all cash must be returned to the scholarship fund. The donors that make this program possible heavily rely on the ethical and fiscal responsibility of the recipient to ensure the monetary award is used in achieving the goals and objects as declared on the application. The signatures on the application serve as a contract that the scholarship will be used as pledged.

Application Process

Applicants must

  1. click on the application link below to review all documents and information needed to fill out the application, Applications will be available >insert date<.
  2. obtain a copy of his/her transcript (unofficial or official are acceptable) and send it in prior to the application deadline.
  3. Complete the application.

Application Form Link

Previous Recipients

Award Recipients

Service Awards

We value the commitment and hard work of our team members. Our service awards program honors those who have contributed their time and talent to our organization.

Each year, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign celebrates employees who have reached 5-year milestones in their careers.