Undergraduate Student Awards

A group of students holding certificates with Dean Rachel Riedner

Awards and prizes are presented to undergraduate students each year in recognition of their work and service to GW and Columbian College. The Distinguished Scholar Awardee is nominated each year by a faculty member, and the Undergraduate Studies Awardee is student nominated.

Distinguished Scholar Award

The Distinguished Scholar Award is awarded to two graduating seniors in Columbian College who have excelled academically and shown commitment to scholarship through participation in research or other academic leadership activities. Faculty members nominate students for this award.



Students who receive this prize should demonstrate exceptional achievement in one or more of the required areas:

  • Excellence in course study
  • Research or other scholarship that shows originality and a depth of knowledge or understanding in the field
  • Significant out-of-class or off-campus activity related to an academic field
  • Significant contributions to the growth and improvement of their department, school or the university


Nomination packages for this award must include a letter of support of no more than three pages from a faculty member on behalf of the department. The Columbian College Office of the Dean may contact nominated students for a copy of their résumé.

Questions? Please contact [email protected].

Student Nomination Form

Undergraduate Studies Award

The CCAS Office of Undergraduate Studies will award an annual prize to an outstanding graduating undergraduate student, the “Undergraduate Studies Award.” This award recognizes innovation and leadership in community service and/or activism and academic performance. Two students will be eligible for a $500 prize. The prize are awarded at the CCAS Celebration in May.

Nominations for 2024 closed on February 9. Stay tuned for next cycle!



The selection is based on the following criteria:

  • The recipient must have a minimum GPA of 3.0.
  • The recipient must have demonstrated:
    • Curricular and extracurricular accomplishments
    • Leadership in either campus or community activities or activism
    • The ability to achieve established goals in these activities or activism


To be eligible, students should submit:

  • a résumé/CV
  • a transcript
  • a one- to two-page statement addressing the eligibility criteria
  • at least one letter of support from a GW faculty member, GW staff member or member of the community who is familiar with the student’s accomplishments

Submissions will be evaluated by a committee of advisors, students, and faculty. Required documents should be uploaded to Box.

Questions? Please contact [email protected].