Hot answers tagged

171

I suggest a third way: Write a concise e-mail to whoever is handing out the award that you would prefer to receive it silently for the reasons you cited (not wanting to be reminded of your disease), i.e., without being mentioned at the ceremony, but via mail or similar. This has several advantages: You spend at most as much energy on this as declining the ...


148

The problem is as @WetlabWalter says: the medal is not just for you - it is for everybody that supported you and, in fact, indirectly for your class, and lecturers. You have a good reason (for yourself) to decline it, which is commendable. But you might offend those who recommended you, those who taught you (who would be indirectly honoured) and possibly ...


146

Don't give in to Imposter Syndrome! Both your reasons are fundamentally not sound. Somebody nominated you for an award. The awards committee thinks you are deserving. You should not refuse the award simply because you think others may be more deserving. It's the task of the award committee to establish this, and their decision was you. Rejecting the award ...


140

Get over yourself. This isn't about you. And this isn't really even about your work. This is about a community celebrating its own values, by recognizing the individuals that best represent those values. "True scholars" don't exist in a vacuum. We are part of a community of scholars. We use resources created by that community, most obviously in the ...


111

I think that it is important to recognize that the biggest value of the award is its contribution to your C.V. and future career, not the prize money. As such, I think you should approach the question of the money as generously as possible: after all, you gave a good talk, but many of the aspects of that good talk depended critically on the contributions of ...


93

Give it to a relative (parent, spouse?). My mother has a "wall of Sergio" in the house where she displays different types of significant awards, letters, etc. I think it's a little weird, but giving them these awards is a nice way to let them have a handy reminder of what you're up to at the time, and parents certainly appreciate it sometimes. My mother and ...


92

I suggest splitting the prize money 50-50 with your advisor, or at least offering (with honest intent) to do so. It is the magnanimous and appropriate thing to do, especially considering that his mentorship and assistance to you in turning the project into a finished, polished paper are likely to have been instrumental in getting the award. And there is ...


68

The discussion here about your question provides an interesting microcosm of the sort of responses you are likely to get to your decision to decline the medal from people at your university who learn about it. Already here we are seeing a lot of people who don't even know you telling you to reconsider your decision, implying that you have a moral duty to ...


61

Will declining a research award be problematic for myself or other people? It's problematic in the sense that it would very likely be a mistake, and undermine the goal that the award is trying to achieve, to the detriment of yourself (mainly) and to a lesser extent of the scientific community you belong to. In a system that is supposed to function as a ...


56

First of all I give a frowny face to everyone who suggested that a graduate student try to divvy up a $500 "young scientist best presentation award" with post-PhD personnel. At least in US academic culture, that borders on the ridiculous. Postdocs make about twice as much money as graduate students, and professors make at least three times as much money as ...


52

First, let me say that I really like jakebeal's answer and his dinner idea. Some of the other answers make good points as well. However, none of the answers so far address the key point of whether morally the award is meant for you alone or also for your coauthors, except for Stephen Kolassa's answer, which I think gets it entirely backwards. By your ...


51

My answer to your question is that I think that you should seriously rethink your opinion about "True Scholars" (I will expound on the reasons below) but if you are unable or unwilling to do so then rather than refuse to accept awards in your own name, accept them on behalf of all students at the university and use whatever prize money may be attached to ...


46

In a comment, you say The problem is I worry that accepting might shine a light on my research not being quite there just yet and people would look at my bibliometrics and think poorly of me, if I hadn't accepted then I'd just be yet another researcher, if that makes sense. I'm not using the bibliometrics as a yard stick for research quality, but rather ...


44

I would find any allusion to this episode, particularly on a day such as graduation, rather difficult to handle. It's up to you what decision to make about the award, but it sounds like you might really benefit from talking to a counselor about your feelings about your illness and recovery. Your school may have free or discounted counselors available, or ...


43

I would find it very unusual and very disturbing if that happened. In my experience (Computer Science and related fields), conference committees work hard with submissions to select the best paper. And they debate it, as different committee members will typically "champion" a paper that they think is worthy. Often this happens because the committee member ...


30

A prize is typically given for both content and presentation of a work, so a typical fair way to handle prize money, whether for poster or paper, is to offer to split it evenly amongst all of the co-authors. Co-authors who feel they have not offered a full share of work might choose to decline their share, but the basic assumption should be an even split. ...


30

It depends. I received best paper and other awards and have been (slightly) involved also in such a selection process. In each case, I have been to the conference for my first time, was not invited, and I am not very well known. However, it was possible to achieve awards. In one conference, the organizers had two or three papers on their short-list. The ...


30

Usually the advice is indeed to accept awards offered to you, but in this case I can understand you wishing to decline it - and you are perfectly in the right to do so. My advice would be to talk to your academic advisor, ombudsman, student counsellor, or whatever this role would be called in your institution, and tell them the same thing you posted here - ...


29

I don't know precisely which university you are at, but at least at the University of Sydney the University Medal is not merely a medal or an award. Its also a grade and is printed on your degree as such. So for instance, possible grades for an Honours degree are "2nd class honours", then "1st class honours", then "1st class honours with university medal" (...


25

You will probably never in your life need the physical certificate. If you don't want to hang onto it, you can probably just dispose of it (though you might as well scan it first).


25

Yes. For example, a professor from Stanford, Rod Fedkiw, won an Oscar in 2015. You can read about it in the following article: Stanford professor wins Oscar for science of destroying things


25

I think I've found what I'm looking for, but I'm still interested in other answers/feedback. I think a new section in my CV that looks like this would be appropriate: Grants National Institutes of Health, AXZ-1394 (2018-2021) "Awesome Grant Title" Role: Key Personnel


24

The negative consequences of declining is that you (more or less) publicly question the decision making skills and procedures of the committee. Thus, whereas your desire is to appear humble you actually give out the impression to know it better. That does not project good on you. Also, creating a fuss where it is absolutely not necessary (i.e., in such a ...


22

I wouldn't include it. I doubt it makes much of a difference, but you yourself say it's not an appropriate item. I agree. To expand a little bit, let me say this: the things you should put on your CV are those that directly connect to the job you want to have. Something like a job you had in an unrelated field is worthwhile in that it shows you were ...


22

First make sure that you have read all the regulations for the award (in the case of ACM fellows: http://awards.acm.org/fellow_nom_guide.cfm). You see that the nomination in this case is quite some work. Especially question 3 is already answered there: You need five endorsers. Hence, it is expected that you "convince five people to support the nomination". ...


22

No. Conference best papers awards are not rigged. Often, associate or track chairs will make decisions based largely (but not entirely) on ratings from peer review. Sometimes, there are awards committees who may take recommendations from reviewers or chairs and make their own decisions. In conferences I've been involved in, awards have always gone to papers ...


19

What is the origin of this group Nobody knows. and do their awards carry any merit towards a typical promotion for faculty tenure or promotion? No. At least, I certainly hope not. Nobody in their right mind would trust an award of completely unknown provenance. I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if everyone who signs up is selected for an award ...


19

hmm, I went to a high school which had no academic prizes because the head thought they were wrong. I received a prize for being top of my year as an undergrad at a well-known English university. I am now a professor at an Australian university and regularly participate in deciding the award of the honours medal for my subject. If you wrote me a letter ...


17

The "degree" part of "honorary degree" is largely irrelevant. Honorary degrees are simply honors bestowed by a university, and they are considered degrees just because degrees are what universities hand out: a degree is the one distinction not available elsewhere in society. Honorary degrees do not necessarily have anything to do with study or recognize ...


17

"My research output is much better than him". "Better" is not well defined in academia. No one has grades: you can't compare an A to an A-. Instead, everything is "graded" more casually. But this casual grade has nothing to do with how hard or difficult the work is. If you mean "better" as "I work harder, have more publications, and my publications use ...


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