Kevin D. Knight Leadership Awards

Kevin D. Knight was a Northern Illinois University (NIU) alumnus who embodied what it means to be a student leader. He was an exemplary leader, serving NIU as a catalyst for positive change and as a role model for up-and-coming student leaders to follow. Kevin used his time at NIU well, dedicating himself to the betterment of campus life for all students. He worked hard in various leadership positions while receiving numerous awards and recognition for his work. 

Kevin seemed to feel that his greatest accomplishment was to encourage his friends and peers to serve their university and the community. It is in the hearts of the students who knew him that his memory and his efforts carry on. For this purpose, the Kevin D. Knight Leadership Awards and Awards Ceremony honor one of NIU’s great student leaders. Let us remember this model student leader by carrying the torch of exemplary leadership and working for a better NIU.

The purpose of the Kevin D. Knight Leadership Awards Ceremony is to recognize the leadership contributions of NIU students to the NIU and DeKalb community. The Division of Student Affairs & Enrollment Management and Student Involvement & Leadership Development would like to identify students who have been intentional about their leadership development. The students who are recognized each year are purposeful about finding opportunities to clarify their values, set an example for others, envision the future, take risks, foster collaboration, and recognize the contributions made by their peers. The next Kevin D. Knight Leadership Awards Ceremony will take place on Sunday, April 26, 2015.

Contact Kelli Bradley, Assistant Director for Leadership and Student Organizational Services, at kbradley3@niu.edu or 815-753-6505 with any questions.

View the poster that lists all 2014 Kevin D. Knight award winners!


  • Freshman Leadership Award Application
    The Freshman Leadership Award recognizes first-year students who have taken the initiative to get involved at NIU, even while they are adjusting to their new surroundings. These students have shown their potential as leaders and their potential for future contributions to campus life at NIU.
  • Sophomore Leadership Award Application
    The Sophomore Leadership Award recognizes students who have had outstanding involvement in campus life. Through their involvement, these recipients have contributed to the quality of life on NIU’s campus. These students have begun to take on positions of leadership within their organizations and have also shown potential for future achievement.
  • Junior Leadership Award Application
    The Junior Leadership Award is given to students who have significantly enhanced NIU’s campus environment through their demonstrated leadership abilities, personal growth, and community service. These students, who are more established in their college careers, have taken on the challenge of holding leadership positions in organizations.
  • Senior Leadership Award Application
    The Senior Leadership Award recognizes the involvement and accomplishments of our outstanding senior leaders. As seniors, they have not only demonstrated their commitment to enhancing the quality of life on NIU's campus, but have also shown outstanding potential for future achievement as they prepare to enter a new phase in their lives.
  • Graduate Leadership Award Application
    The Graduate Leadership Award recognizes graduate students who are involved on campus despite the graduate level coursework, professional commitments, and/or family responsibilities. The award recipients have exceeded in demonstrating their involvement and balance between work, school, and life.
  • Outstanding Student Organization Award Application
    The Outstanding Student Organization Award recognizes the contributions of student organizations. Organizations are evaluated on their ability to work as a team, their creativity and initiative, their ability to accomplish tasks, the range of their programming, and their overall service to both the campus and the community. 
  • Outstanding Student Organization Advisor Award Application
    This award recognizes the dedication of a faculty or staff member who volunteers time as an advisor to student organizations. The selected individual demonstrates a high level of commitment to the organization they advise, and they play a central role in assisting our student leaders to reach their highest potential. 
  • Institutional Tuition Waiver Application
    Institutional tuition waivers are awarded to particularly accomplished and promising students. These awards are intended to assist these talented and special students in their ability to attend college. Applicants are judged on their contributions to the quality of campus life, the variety and scope of their involvement on campus, their potential for future involvement, and their academic achievement.
  • Who's Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges Nomination Form
    The award for Who's Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges is national in scope. Students are selected for this honor on the basis of their academic achievement, service to the community, leadership in extracurricular activities, and potential for continued success. They join an elite group of students from more than 2,300 institutions of higher education from across the nation.
  • Parents' Association Endowed Scholarship
    In 1997, the Parents' Association (now Huskie Family Connections) endowed a scholarship that would be awarded annually to a deserving NIU student. The scholarship is open to all degree-seeking junior-level students who are in good academic standing with the university. Preference is given to those applicants who have maintained at least a 3.00 GPA. Other requirements include involvement in extra-curricular activities and community service. Students interested in applying for the scholarship must write a personal statement and supply letters of recommendation with their application.

The next Kevin D. Knight Leadership Awards Ceremony will be held on Sunday, April 26, 2015. For questions email KBradley3@niu.edu.