Distinguished Undergraduate Mentoring Award

The Distinguished Undergraduate Mentoring Award honors the practice of mentoring undergraduate scholarly activity, and recognizes demonstrated excellence in mentoring undergraduate researchers.

2024 Recipient


Kristy Dean, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology
Joined Grand Valley State University in 2009

Kristy Dean studies facets of social exclusion with her undergraduate mentees. She strives to “understand where they’ve been and where they are now, [to] guide them to where they want to go”. Many of her students have co-authored publications or presentations and have pursued successful academic and professional careers. Dean’s impact on undergraduate mentoring is campus-wide. She served for seven years on the Undergraduate Research Council (two years as Chair) and supported the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship by designing and analyzing data from a large-scale survey describing faculty members' experiences with, and perception of, research at GVSU.

About the Award

The Center for Scholarly and Creative Excellence is pleased to sponsor an award designed to honor the practice of mentoring undergraduate scholarly activity. The award is intended to recognize demonstrated excellence in mentoring undergraduate researchers, to encourage mentoring relationships with undergraduate students, and to convey the campus' high regard for such contributions made by the tenured/tenure-track faculty of the academic and research community. In addition to the honor of being designated a CSCE Distinguished Faculty Mentor, recipients are awarded $500. Nominations for the Award are solicited from deans, department chairs, faculty colleagues, alumni, and current research students.

The criteria used in nominations and evaluations of nominees are: significant contribution to advancing undergraduate research and scholarship on at GVSU; demonstrated commitment to undergraduate research through specific examples such as peer-reviewed publications involving undergraduates, student presentations, showings, or performances; and evidence for the continuing success of mentored students in the research/creative endeavor (where the students are now).

All tenured and tenure-track faculty members who have been employed at GVSU a minimum of 3 years.

How to Nominate

Each college may nominate a faculty member for this University-wide award. The recipient will be recognized as a distinguished mentor. The Faculty Award Committee for each college will select one faculty member (except CLAS, which selects up to seven, and Seidman College of Business, which selects up to two) to be considered for the award. Faculty Award Committee members are selected by the Dean. Faculty Award Committee membership will be a minimum of three faculty. Nominations for the award may come from college dean, department chair, and faculty colleagues. Self-nominations are not accepted.

Packets with missing items will not be reviewed. Nomination packets must include:

  • Completed Declaration Page
  • Statement of mentoring philosophy from nominee in regards to undergraduate research and creative practice.
  • Three letters of support from colleagues who have knowledge of the nominee’s ability as a teacher/scholar. One letter of support shall be from the department chair of the nominee’s unit, one shall be from a recent research student, and the third may be from a faculty colleague, advanced degree alumnus, or other individual who can comment on the nominee’s qualifications.
  • Listing of mentored undergraduatesname, project, publications (designating as peer or non-peer reviewed) and current position of student.
  • A current Curriculum Vitae.

** Please note: ONLY the above stated documents, combined into a single PDF, will be accepted as a completed nomination packet. No additional documents will be accepted.

Yearly on November 1st. The nominee’s unit is responsible for obtaining pertinent data and providing the required information. Please check with your Dean for any deadline requiring you to submit to the Dean's office for review and signatures prior to being sent to CSCE by November 1st.

The Faculty Research and Development Committee, with representation from the Undergraduate Research Council, will review all candidates, and CSCE will forward the names of recipients to the Provost and recipients' Dean by December 15th. The Dean's office will inform the receipient of the award. CSCE will inform nominees who are not selected. Only one award will be made each year. The recipient will receive $500. An individual faculty member may not receive the award more than once.

Page last modified February 16, 2024