2018 Awards of Excellence

NCAN is pleased to launch a Call for Nominations for the annual Awards of Excellence that will be announced at our 2018 national conference, Building Bridges to Success, Sept. 24-26 in Pittsburgh, PA.  The awards recognize excellence in college access and success organizations, their staff and executive leadership. Nominations must be received by Friday, June 29

Do you know a deserving candidate? Download the nomination form and instructions. 

While nominees are not required to attend the 2018 NCAN National Conference, we ask that they make every effort to be present.

We seek nominations for four awards:

  • The College Access Organization Award of Excellence recognizes the work of a college access program to fulfill NCAN's mission of building, strengthening, and empowering communities committed to college access and success so that all students, especially those underrepresented in postsecondary education, can achieve their educational dreams. Nominations should include a brief description of the organization, including quantitative data on the program’s positive outcomes, examples of student success, creative partnerships, and evidence-based results. A $5,000 award will be paid to the recipient organization for general operating support, scholarships, and/or professional development.
  • The Dr. David B. Swedlow Memorial College Access Staff Member Award of Excellence recognizes the dedication, hard work and innovation of an individual working at a college access/success program. This award is named in honor of Dr. David B. Swedlow, a practitioner who dedicated his life’s work to helping students gain access to college. Nominees for this award may include program staff, advisors, or others employed by a college access organization. Nominations should include the nominee’s biography or curriculum vitae, professional accomplishments and service to the community, as well as details of the individual’s commitment to excellence in college access. A $1,000 award will be paid to the staff member’s organization in support of professional development.
  • The Executive Leadership Award of Excellence recognizes the dedication and hard work of an individual serving as a college access program’s Executive Director or President, or as a member of its Board of Trustees or Directors. Nominations should detail the individual’s personal service and commitment to the organization, service to the community, and contributions to the of field college access. A $1,000 award will be paid to the winner’s organization in support of a new, one-time scholarship made in honor of the recipient.
  • The “To & Through” Award of Excellence recognizes an institution (or department within) that collaborates with an NCAN-member college access/success organization to ensure that the organization’s students – as well as all enrolled underrepresented students – get the supports they need to complete a two- or four-year degree. Nominations should include quantitative data demonstrating the institution’s enrollment, persistence and completion rates for underrepresented students, a description of the student supports the institution provides, and details of the relationship with the nominating NCAN member. The winning institution will receive $1,000 for need-based scholarships and/or professional development.

Award winners will be determined based upon demonstrated merit through letters of nomination, program descriptions, biographies of nominees, and at least one letter of support from an individual other than the nominator. Unless otherwise stated, nominators and nominees must be NCAN members or board members of NCAN members in good standing. Programs and individuals may self-nominate, and nominations will be considered by a committee of NCAN members. Completed nominations must be received by Friday, June 29, and submitted via email attachment to Member Services Associate Jamese B. Carrell at Late applications will not be accepted.

We look forward to your participation and to recognizing the important work being done by NCAN members around the country. If you have any questions, please contact Jamese at or (202) 347-4848 x207.