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Staff Recognition Award Program

Effective July 1, 2013 - June 30, 2014

Purpose of the Program

Dedicated employees make DePaul’s mission to provide students with an extraordinary education and to work for social justice possible.  When we recognize their contributions, especially those that go beyond their core duties, we motivate them to continue their excellent work and affirm a staff member's support to DePaul's mission.

The DePaul University Staff Recognition Award Program is designed to identify and reward such distinctive and exceptional achievements by staff employees who maintain their day-to-day duties at the “meets expectations” level. The program recognizes achievements that go above and beyond the employee's core duties when they exhibit actions that significantly contribute to the university’s or departmental initiatives, exceptional customer service, or ideas that improve operational efficiency.The granting of an award shows the employee respect and appreciation in a tangible manner and reinforces the respect we demonstrate to the students we serve and educate. 

Timely recognition is critical to reinforce the connection to actual achievement.  As such, awards made at the end of the year to recognize a successful year is not in line with the program’s intent and is discouraged.  Overall performance recognition is better accomplished through the merit review process. Additionally, recognition for filling additional duties in an ‘acting capacity’ during a short-term vacancy are outside the scope of this program and require advance approval by the President/Provost/EVP at their discretion.

How is the Program Funded?

The Office of Human Resources administers a central account for the Staff Recognition Award Program.  Funds are allocated in July (the first quarter of the fiscal year) to each vice president or dean based on the number of full-time staff in each area.  Employees are eligible to receive a maximum of two awards per fiscal year, and one group award, not totaling more than six thousand dollars ($6,000).  The award may range from a minimum of one hundred dollars ($100) to a maximum of three thousand dollars ($3,000) depending on the scope of the activity or accomplishment.  Awards should be submitted in whole dollar increments. The amount of the reward should be proportionate to the significance of the achievement.  For instance, an employee who completes a two-year project should be rewarded in a more substantial way than another employee who simply does a favor for you. 

Who is Eligible?

  • Any full-time staff employee who has a performance rating of “meets expectations” or higher.
  • Awards for athletic team performance or other measures of a successful athletic team are also eligible.

What is a Group Award?

  • A group of employees are also eligible to receive a Staff Recognition Award.  The group award would be for work that encompasses cross-functional collaboration or a project done at the university-wide level.
  • One group award may be processed in addition to two individual awards.  The total for all awards to an employee cannot exceed the $6,000 annual limit.
  • Fund transfers to support group awards may be allowed for cross-functional or university-wide projects with prior approval granted at the divisional level (President, Provost, EVP).

What are inelligible submissions?

  • Executive-level employees, such as vice presidents and deans, are not eligible to participate in this program.
  • Self-nominations are ineligible.
  • The Higher Education Act (HEA) prohibits payments for the following reasons:  “any commission, bonus or other incentive payment based in any part, directly or indirectly, upon success in securing enrollments or the award of financial aid, to any person or entity who is engaged in any student recruitment or admission activity, or in making decisions regarding the award of Title IV HEA program funds”.  For questions regarding whether a payment falls within this definition, please contact HR

Who can Nominate?

Any faculty or staff member may nominate an employee identified as having made an exceptional contribution.  The employee’s manager must concur with and approve the nomination. 


  1. The requestor completes the Staff Recognition Nomination Form, describing the exact accomplishment(s) that go above and beyond the employee's core duties.
  2. The requestor creates and submits a request via the Payment Request System in Campus Connection, adding the nomination form as an attachment.  .  Detailed instructions for submitting a request can be found within the Payment Request System Guidebook provided by Payroll.  Please allow up to 3 weeks from date of submission.  At fiscal year-end, requests submitted after the 5th of June will not be processed until the following fiscal year.
  3. After the award has reached final approval, managers are responsible for informing the employee of the amount and date the recognition award will be paid.  The manager may request an electronic version of an award certificate by emailing  Human Resources encourages managers to request this certificate and use it in presenting the award to the employee.  Human Resources also encourages managers to provide the employee with a copy of the nomination submitted in support of the award.
  4. Upon final approval and processing, the nominee will receive the award on the next available payroll, less all applicable taxes. The award will be paid consistent with the normal payroll calendar.