December 18, 2019

Dear Members of the Trinity College Community,

An honorary degree is one of higher education’s most significant accolades. Trinity College awards honorary degrees, honoris causa, to distinguished individuals who during the course of their lives have made enduring contributions to society and to the world through education, public or humanitarian service, arts and culture, business, medicine, philanthropy, the media, or other endeavors. Honorary degree recipients should have demonstrated commitment to the humane and educational values that exemplify the mission of Trinity College.

We invite all members of the Trinity community to submit nominations for Commencement 2021. Nominations for 2021 honorary degree recipients can be submitted here until 5:00 p.m. on March 4, 2020. The Honorands Review Committee composed of representatives from the faculty, staff, student body, and Board of Trustees, will review the nominations. The committee will make recommendations to me, and I will submit nominations to the Board of Trustees in April for final approval.

Eligibility for Nominations

The president of the college, trustees, faculty members (individually or jointly), and members of the College community may nominate candidates to receive honorary degrees, though a nomination to the committee does not guarantee selection or approval. Honorary degree nominations for sitting faculty, trustees, or staff will not be considered.  We strongly encourage you to provide detail for each section of the nomination form to ensure that the review committee has complete information for your nominee.

Commencement Speakers

We also welcome nominations for commencement speakers. It is college practice that individuals delivering the Commencement address also receive honorary degrees; therefore, nominations for Commencement speakers follow the honorary degree nomination process. On occasion, someone not being conferred an honorary degree may serve as speaker.

I look forward to your nominations and appreciate your participation in this important process. Questions may be submitted to Karolina Kwiecinska, special assistant to the president, at [email protected] or 860-297-4203.


Joanne Berger-Sweeney
President and Trinity College Professor of Neuroscience