Employee Recognition & Awards

Employee Recognition Collage

Employee Recognition

Meaningful recognition is governed by mutual respect and is expressed sincerely and regularly through a variety of gestures, such as verbal praise, written notes, or public acknowledgment. At Tulane, we believe that recognizing employees' efforts, dedication, and contributions leads to a more positive workplace, increased morale, and higher productivity. It makes our team members feel valued, appreciated, and motivated to make a difference every day.

    Types of Recognition:

    • Day-to-Day Recognition: This form of recognition is free and can be given by anyone to anyone at any time. Verbal praise is an example of this form of recognition.
    • Informal Recognition: Informal recognition, falling under the day-to-day category, includes unscripted and spontaneous acknowledgments. It serves as a powerful motivator for employees and is given regularly. Examples include praise, gratitude, encouragement, or a handwritten "thank you" note. Research has shown that this form of recognition is the most effective way to acknowledge employees.
    • Formal Recognition: Formal employee recognition includes structured and planned activities that can be university-wide or department-specific. Formal recognition generally includes the presentation of awards and certificates as well as a celebration event. On behalf of Tulane University, the Office of Human Resources & Institutional Equity recognizes and celebrates the commitment and contributions of employees through the awards and events listed below.

    Recognition taps into employees' discretionary energy and effort, sending positive signals that reinforce favorable performance and behavior for future replication. Learn more about recognition practices and ideas in our new guide, The Power of Recognition: Making a Difference Every Day


    Tulane has dedicated awards to recognize employees. These awards are to show appreciation for employees who have displayed the eligibility and criteria for the specified award.

    President's Staff Excellence Award

    The President's Staff Excellence Award is bestowed every year on the top university employees who best represent high achievement in their contributions to the university. Award recipients receive a one-time cash award. Use the links below for award eligibility, criteria, to access the nomination form, and to view a list of current and past recipients.

    President's Departmental/Team Excellence Award

    The President's Departmental/Team Excellence Award was established to recognize departments, teams, or groups of employees whose achievements advance or support the university's initiatives to transform the Tulane experience. Recipients will receive a one-time cash award. Use the links below for award eligibility, criteria, and to access the nomination form.

    President's EDI Excellence Award

    The President’s EDI Excellence Award was established to recognize employees who are leading the way to making Tulane a more inclusive, diverse, and welcoming community. Recipients will receive a one-time cash award. Use the link below to learn more about award eligibility, criteria, and the selection process.

    Yvette Milner Jones Award

    In recognition of Yvette M. Jones' longstanding leadership, dedication, and tireless service to the advancement of Tulane University, the Tulane University Board established the Yvette Milner Jones Award. This award will be bestowed upon an outstanding Tulane University staff member or administrator for his or her superior achievement, dedicated service, and involvement in the affairs of the Tulane University community. Use the link below for award eligibility, criteria, and selection process.

    The Spirit of Tulane Award

    This award was established by President Fitts in 2017 to recognize those employees who best exemplify the Spirit of Tulane. Nominations for this award are accepted on a continuous basis. Recipients are notified by the Office of the President and are invited as honored guests to attend the annual unified recognition event held each spring. Use the links below for award eligibility, criteria, and selection process.

    Tulane Staff Legacy Award

    This honor is bestowed on those staff employees who voluntarily leave the university in good standing after 25 years of continuous, full-time staff employment at Tulane.  Those whose service has been awarded legacy status may maintain an active Tulane email account, participate in the extended tuition waiver program,* maintain library privileges, have access to Tulane dining facilities, access the Reily Center at employee rates, receive discounted tickets for athletic events and the bookstore and have access to lectures, concerts and theater performances on campus that are open to the university community. Use the links below for award eligibility, criteria, and to access the nomination form.

    *Extended tuition waiver benefit is available to all staff employees who meet eligibility requirements as outlined in the staff handbook regardless of Legacy Award status.

    Milestone Anniversaries: Staff Recognition Social

    We aim to celebrate employee milestone anniversaries during the year of their anniversary to enhance the overall employee experience and strengthen our recognition efforts. Acknowledging employee dedication and loyalty is crucial, as it significantly contributes to the success and positive work culture at Tulane University.

    In December 2024, we will hold our annual Staff Recognition Social to honor those who celebrate milestone anniversaries in 2024. More information about this event will be sent to invited guests later this year. In the meantime, please view the list of employees reaching milestone anniversaries this year by clicking the button below.

    2024 Milestone Anniversaries

    View past milestone anniversaries here: 

    Tulane University encourages employee recognition throughout our organization. Learning & Organizational Development provides the tools and information to support these endeavors. Click here to get more insight into best practices and examples of day-to-day and informal recognition. 

    For questions please contact the Learning & Organizational Development team at lodhr@tulane.edu.