Exceptional Service Support Program

The Exceptional Service Support Program is designed to acknowledge and support the sometimes-disproportionate service that faculty members – especially women and those from historically underrepresented groups – are sometimes asked to make to the university. Such service promotes the university’s interest in having a broad range of perspectives represented on important committees, engaging in governance, and taking on roles to support the university as an inclusive institution.

The program, funded centrally, provides release time from teaching for faculty who are disproportionately providing service activities including evidence of significant advising of students and others beyond what is usually expected of faculty members.  The central funds are provided to departments to hire an instructor to cover a single course, from which the designated faculty member would be released (about $8000k excluding fringes and the GS surcharge) during the time of the award).

Assistant and associate professors are eligible. It is expected that up to 10 faculty members will be provided a course release each year under this program.

2020-21 Nominations

Submission Process

  • Request for course release is initiated with a nomination from a department chair or mentor.
  • Nominations should:
    • Identify the course form which the nominee will be released, and how the course will be covered.
    • Describe the work the nominee has done to advance the mission of the university through service, and in particular how this work can be understood to exceed that normally performed by someone at that rank.
    • Include a brief letter from the department chair (if the chair is not the nominator) supporting the course release and its timing.
  • Requests/nominations should be sent to the corresponding dean’s office, with the expectation that deans’ offices will communicate an internal deadline by which they will receive all nominations from their school/college.
  • Deans’ offices will forward nominations, with a letter of endorsement (and, if there are more than a single nomination, a ranking of nominations) so that they are received in the Office of the Provost no later than February 28, 2021.

Review and Selection

Nominations will be evaluated by a small group that includes individuals from the Office of the Provost and the DDEEA. Awards will be announced by the end of March 2021.


Beth Meyerand
Vice Provost for Faculty and Staff Affairs
Office of the Provost