U21 Awards - Colleagues

Colleague looking at a whiteboard full of text

How do I nominate a colleague or a team? 

The process is straightforward – check the nomination criteria, then fill in the nomination form with the reasons you are choosing the person or team you would like to nominate. In the form, you will be asked to evidence:

  • How the person or team you are nominating has contributed to international efforts in higher education

  • The impact of the work of the nominee/s 

  • How the person or team has gone above and beyond their expected deliverables

View the U21 Awards nomination criteria

Nominations for 2023 are now closed. They will reopen late 2024.

What are the U21 Awards? 

If you want to recognise and reward an individual or team that goes the extra mile to transcend borders, the U21 Awards are here to celebrate global collaboration in divisive challenging times. 

Who can be nominated for a U21 Award? 

>> Academic colleagues, professional staff and teams of any seniority can be nominated for a U21 Award. 

  • A person, or team, whose work shows an impactful, evidence-based contribution across borders in the world of higher education – above and beyond the usual expectations of their role.

  • A person, or team, whose work has furthered progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals in a U21 member university, or across several of them. 

Nominees for the U21 Awards must be: 

  • A member of academic or professional services staff at a U21 member university  - any level of seniority or experience can be nominated

  • Not a current or former President or other Senior Leader of a U21 member university

  • Someone whose work has had an international impact

If you would like to nominate a current student, or a young alumni, see our U21 Leaders of the Future Awards.

What achievements are considered for a U21 Award? 

The work of the person, or team, could be in the one or more of the following areas:

  • Research: Collaborating on research that has demonstrated a significant impact on international policy and practice.
  • Education: Enhancing opportunities for mobility, exchange of knowledge or skills, internationalisation of the curriculum, teaching, learning and assessment of students, and / or supporting the wider student experience.
  • Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI): Developing initiatives that have supported EDI aims across staff and student communities, advanced multi-cultural understanding and / or led to innovations on campus, which have added value to the university's local / international communities.
  • Sustainability: Taking action that has brought together multiple stakeholders to positively influence the aims of the UN SDGs and developed solutions for a more sustainable and / or climate conscious future across research, education, campus operations or community partnerships.
  • Governance: Advancing strategy and planning for international impact within university administration.

What happens after I submit a nomination? 

Nominations are confidential, so we ask you not to contact the person or team you’re nominating before you submit the form. After you’ve submitted the nomination form, we will send it to your institution’s U21 Senior Leader for approval. All approved nominations are then submitted to our judging panel for consideration.  

Thank you for taking the time to nominate someone for a U21 Award. Celebrating the successes of our members is so important and reminds us all how vital global collaboration is.