Student Achievement Awards
The Student Achievement Awards is an annual event that recognizes individuals and groups who have made contributions to the University of Idaho campus and community life.
Each spring, more than 50 undergraduate students are recognized. There are also categories for student organizations, staff and faculty. All student categories come with monetary awards, and more than $10,000 is awarded each year. Winners and nominators of winners will be sent an invitation by email.
Tips on Best Practices in Applying for the Student Achievement Awards
Two paragraphs won’t likely address the criteria well. Successful letters are not overly brief.
Successful letters aren’t usually extensive. There is a sweet spot and it’s often what can fit on a single page in 10-point type or larger with reasonable margins. Remember, these are judged by humans who need information in order to score applicants, but who might glaze over if overwhelmed by a wall of text.
Perhaps it goes without saying but spellcheck helps and reading your application/nomination out loud to yourself or a friend (or even random strangers at an appropriate distance) is a good way to catch typos. The awards are competitive and, while the Grammar and Punctuation Police will not be reviewing your materials, the difference between entries can often be close enough that poorly edited materials can make a difference.
Judges are provided a rubric based on awards criteria. They are asked to score each category from a high of seven to a low of zero. An applicant’s goal should be to get as many points as possible in each category, so addressing them point-by-point assures applications will be as competitive as possible. Using direct and easily understandable evidence is crucial. Awards criteria can be found in the description of each award.
Some categories will have 50 or more applicants. That means some judges will put hours into this process. Helping them identify your most important info with bullet points or bolding is often a good idea, but again … use moderation. If everything is bold, nothing is bold, so make sure to save such things for the information you really want to use to grab them.