Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professors

Outstanding faculty scholars at the University may be designated Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professors (PRSAPs). This designation will not only recognize and honor past excellence in research or creative artistry, but will provide significant tangible support for continuing and future efforts. Each such professor will receive a support budget and some release from teaching and service duties. Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professors (PRSAPs) will be nominated by a Select Committee and appointed by the President.


  • Selections are to be made solely on the basis of scholarly or artistic credentials; 
  • Candidates must be full-time, tenured faculty with the rank of professor;
  • Successful nominees must have achieved national or international acclaim for their research, scholarship or artistry in their fields;
  • Individuals must have records of significant and sustained research or creative artistic work, scholars or artists of highest stature in their disciplines;
  • Candidate must have made significant positive impact on the discipline nationally or internationally;
  • Nominees will be expected to continue to contribute to their disciplines at a high level.

In evaluating the nominees, the Committee may draw upon sources of expertise internal and external to the University. Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professors are nominated by the Select Committee and appointed by the President. The award is not renewable and will end if and when full-time NIU employment ceases.

Submission Deadlines

Nominations - October 5, 2018

  • Forward letters of nomination to Research and Innovation Partnerships, Lowden Hall 301
  • The nomination letters must include the candidate's qualifications
  • Nominations can be submitted by a current or retired NIU faculty member from any department.

Complete Applications - November 9, 2018

  • Following nomination, the faculty member must submit one complete set of application materials (see below) via email to 
  • All four components of the application materials are required. No incomplete applications will be considered by the Selection Committee.

Application Materials

Candidates for the award are asked to submit the following to the Select Committee in the office of Research and Innovation Partnerships:

  1. The letter of qualifications indicated in the first paragraph (typically, the nomination letter is used).
  2. A current vita listing all creative and other scholarly works, as well as recognitions, awards, offices and memberships that are relevant to the profession.
    • In listing publications with multiple authors, please indicate your role as an author by clarifying lead authorship, percent contribution, senior authorship, etc. so that the committee can objectively evaluate candidates from diverse fields across the university.
  3. A narrative describing the development of the candidate's research or artistic career. The latter might be in the form of a biography--with ample reference to the information in the vita--in which it is shown how scholarly contributions have been made.
    • The narrative may be written by the applicant or by a nominator. The Select Committee has requested that the following elements be included: a description of the impact that the candidate has had on the discipline; details of the national or international recognition that has been generated by this impact; a discussion of likely future developments in the research or creative endeavor along with an indication of how advances founded upon current accomplishments will be assisted by the award of a Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professorship.
    • A limit of 1000 words is suggested.
  4. Please arrange to have three letters of recommendation from recognized authorities in your field of research from outside of NIU. If more than three are received, only the first three will be used.
    • These letters should be mailed/emailed directly to the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation Partnerships before the deadline. These three outside individuals should have achieved national or international reputations in the appropriate field and should not have a close personal connection with the candidate.
    • To ascertain that these individuals have the capacity for making authoritative comments on your scholarship, you may provide brief biographical sketches. Alternatively, the external references can attach CVs with their letters of recommendation.
    • Please note: In addition to the three outside supporting letters, the Vice President for Research & Innovation Partnerships will select and solicit up to three additional letters from the experts in your field. These extra letters will be secured only for the finalists.

Persons who have submitted the above materials within the last two years may reactivate their candidacy by submitting any information necessary to update the previous file. After the third consecutive submission the nominee will not be allowed to resubmit a fourth year. After a year off from the competition, the candidate may submit new materials to be considered as a candidate for Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professor.