Awards and Honors

SOIS Awards, Honors and Recognition

The School of Information Studies has a long and proud history of offering a rigorous academic experience to future library and information leaders who will make a positive change in the service to their patrons. We’re honored to prepare our graduates for an exciting, challenging and ever-changing career through inventive theory and proven practice. We also benefit from a long tradition of supportive alumnae/i—prominent leaders in the field of information. Here we recognize students, faculty and alumnae/i who demonstrate strong leadership, academic excellence, and passion for the field of libraries and information.

Helen Cohen Outstanding Student Award
The Follett Corporation Excellence in Teaching Award
Alumnae/i Award for Professional Achievement
Graduate Outstanding Student Award
GSLIS Young Mazzuchelli Model (special)
C. Berger Entrepreneurial Promise Award (history)


The award is given each year during spring commencement activities to an MLIS student who is enrolled in the spring semester and has completed at least 12 credits or who has graduated within the last two semesters (i.e., fall or summer). The award amount is $500. The SOIS Honors and Awards Committee selects the student to receive the award based on a combination of the following criteria:

  • academic excellence
  • caritas & veritas
  • commitment to the profession
  • service orientation
  • intellectual curiosity
  • collaborative spirit

2016 Cohen Award Winner
Michelle Decker

Michelle Decker, (pictured), exemplifies the award criteria through her high academic achievement and outstanding work with the children she serves at Farragut Elementary School in Joliet, where Michelle currently works as a library paraprofessional. She graduated with her MLIS on May 8, 2016. The selection committee specifically cited her communication skills, effectiveness as a group leader, generosity of intellect, and dedication to the profession not only at Farragut but also during her internship at the Pritzker Military Museum and Library as a photograph cataloging intern.

“Michelle is a dedicated student who works well with others,” says Mary Pat Fallon, assistant professor in GSLIS and member of the GSLIS Honors and Awards Committee. “She is extremely organized, a diligent worker, gifted creatively and is committed to the field of library and information science.” Cecilia Salvatore, associate professor and coordinator of cultural heritage and archives, also served on the committee.

Year Winner
2015 Rose Hopkins-LaRocco
2014 Valeria Hunter
2011 Brendan Hubbs
2009 Kyle Jones
2008 James MacDonald
2007 Stephanie Gray
2006 Inger Krueger
2005 Joel Hahn
2004 Patrice Foerster
2003 Carol Gulyas
2000 Students of Beta Phi Mu, accepted by Leslie Anne Warren, President, Beta Phi Mu
1997 Anne Thompson

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On a rotating basis, both SOIS students along with recent alumnae/i are encouraged to vote for a recipient of the Follett Excellence in Teaching Award. Generously sponsored by the Follett Corporation the award includes an honorarium of $1,000; the recipient also speaks at the Spring Commencement ceremony.

2016 Follett Excellence in Teaching Award
Dr. Karen Snow

GSLIS is delighted to announce that Dr. Karen Snow, (pictured), is the winner of the 2016 Follett Excellence in Teaching Award. This award is given based on voting by student and recent alumnae/i, which makes it especially meaningful to the faculty member who wins. The award rotates among Dominican's graduate schools, and 2016 is GSLIS's turn. Dr. Snow will receive a $1,000 honorarium from the Follett endowment, and will give an address at the spring University commencement ceremony. Congratulations, Dr. Snow!

Year Winner
2012 Janice Del Negro
2008 Mary Pat Fallon
2005 Kate Marek
2002 Karen Brown
1999 Ann Carlson
1996 Kenneth Black

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This award rotates among Dominican's graduate schools. Past recipients have made contributions to publications and served in leadership roles in associations and other service positions. Winners display a philosophy of professionalism and promotion of ethical responsibilities.

Year Winner
2014 Jan Chindlund MALIS ’89   
2010 Alice Calabrese Berry ’70, MALS ’71    
2007 Jane Burke MALS ’70    
2004 Liz Bishoff MALS ’74  
2001 Margaret Kimmel ’60, MALS ’63
1998 Darlene Weingand MALS ’73
1995 Dorothy In-Lan Wang Li MALS ’68, MBA ’81

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The opportunity to name the Dominican University Outstanding Graduate Award rotates among the university’s graduate schools; the full-time faculty of SOIS chose a student based on their unique blend of Caritas and Veritas. Examples include committee membership, service and stellar academic records.

Year Winner
2015 Elizabeth Hamilton, Class of 2015
2011 Brendan Hubbs, Class of 2012
2006 Inger Krueger, Class of 2006
2003 Carol Gulyas, Class of 2003
2000 Students of Beta Phi Mu, accepted by Leslie Anne Warren, President, Beta Phi Mu

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Dominican University marked the 150th anniversary of the death of Father Samuel Mazzuchelli in 2014, the founder of the Sinsinawa Dominican Congregation and the institution that would become Dominican University. “Father Sam” was a native of Italy and a true American pioneer, benefitting untold numbers of people through his life's work. In this commemorative year, each school in the university, including SOIS recognized one young alumnae/i (under 40) who exemplifies the character, spirit and vocation of Father Mazzuchelli.

Year Winner
2014 Allison Schein, MLIS ‘12

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The C. Berger Award was presented to a GSLIS student who exhibited “unusual creativity, reflected an innovative spirit and showed the most promise for an outstanding career in a special library, non-traditional setting, or as an entrepreneur.” A clear indication of the students’ entrepreneurial leadership potential along with the prospect for innovative and scholarly research should have been evident.

Year Winner
2008 Daniel Braun
2007 Kelly Quinn
2006 Patricia Smolin
2005 Lauren Collen
2004 Catherine Saum
2003 Karen Miller

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Updated: November 10, 2016