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University of Rochester High School Awards Program

The four High School Awards and a pen placed atop or near a couple of books for display.

About the awards

The University of Rochester is pleased to sponsor four prestigious awards that recognize high school juniors’ outstanding achievements in leadership and academics.

Each year, counselors, teachers, and administrators from high schools around the world may nominate up to four qualified juniors, one student for each award. Participation is open to all secondary schools.

All nominees will have their application fee waived and will be eligible to be considered for merit scholarships worth at least $5,000 per year.


 The 2024 nominations will open in February 2024. 

The final deadline to submit your nomination(s) is June 15 at 11:59 p.m. EST, without exception. There is no race to nominate—there is no overall limit of how many nominations Rochester accepts in total each season. We accept nominations until the deadline.

Nominate a student

Award packets

During the 2024 cycle, nominators will receive a packet with the physical award and certificate approximately 2 – 3 weeks after nominating. It will be sent directly to the nominators school. Please consider nominating students by March 15 to ensure your packet arrives by May 1 if you have an awards ceremony in May. If you’re nominating from outside of the United States, the process is the same, but the mailed award packets will contain letters and certificates only (no award items).

If you have any questions, please contact the high school awards program manager at or (585) 275-3221. Include your school name and CEEB code in any correspondence or message.

The awards

The relative weighting of award criteria is left to the nominator’s discretion, but all criteria listed below should be taken into consideration.

Bausch + Lomb Honorary Science Award
  • High achievement and rigor in science and math classes
  • Positive contributions to their school and within the larger community
Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony Award
  • Demonstrated commitment to understanding and addressing difficult social issues
  • Leadership and dedication to community action
  • Strong grades and rigorous courses taken in the humanities and social sciences
George Eastman Young Leaders Award
  • Strong leadership experience at school and in the community
  • High grades and challenging courses
  • Extensive involvement in extracurricular activities
Xerox Award for Innovation and Information Technology
  • Strong interest in innovation and/or information technology and a high level of achievement in this area
  • Exposure to new technologies outside of school, such as pursuing serious work opportunities in local laboratories or industry
  • Leading other students to new approaches to old problems (e.g., business plans for fundraising, innovative community service, after-school activities, and best uses of internal communications tools such as chat and blogs)

Frequently asked questions

I want to nominate two students for the same award. Is this possible?

No, each school may only select one junior to nominate per award. Additionally, no student can be nominated for more than one award.

How do I submit my nomination(s)?

Only online submissions will be accepted. Once you have successfully completed and submitted your nominations, if the system directs you to an additional form page, you may need to scroll to the top of the page and select the “LOG OUT” button to nominate the next student.

Why should I consider nominating students by March 15?

This ensures that you will receive the certificates by the end of April. If you submit nominations after March 15, the nominations are not viewed or processed any differently, but the certificate may arrive after May 1. The final deadline to submit your nomination(s) is June 15 at 11:59 p.m. EST, without exception. There is no race to nominate—there is no overall limit of how many nominations Rochester accepts in total each season. We accept nominations until the deadline.

Where can I get my school’s CEEB code?

Request it from your school guidance office, or find your school’s CEEB code.

How do I get a password to nominate a student for a University of Rochester High School Award?

The password was included in the correspondence sent prior to the opening of the nomination season. If you have misplaced that password, high school counselors, teachers, and school administrators should contact or (585) 275-3221.

What if I’m nominating from outside the United States?

The process is the same, but the mailed award packets will contain letters and certificates only.

I nominated a student for the wrong award or nominated the wrong student. Can I change this?

If you just submitted your nomination, you may still be able to cancel it before the award packet is mailed. If this is the case, please email as soon as possible. If the award packet has been mailed, there is no guarantee a change can be made to the nomination.

I misspelled a student’s name on the nomination form. How do I correct this?

Please email with the correct (and incorrect) spelling of the student’s name so the record can be corrected as soon as possible. Please also include your school name and your CEEB code to expedite the process.

When will students know they have been nominated for an award?

Award certificates and physical awards are sent to schools in the spring so that they can be presented at award ceremonies. It is the goal of this program that the student learns of their award from those who nominated them.

I never received an award package for a student I nominated. What should I do?

Email, making sure to include your contact information, CEEB code, school’s name, the award you’re inquiring about, and the student’s name. If the nomination was submitted properly, an award certificate can be resent within a few business days.

If an award winner is admitted to the University of Rochester and receives a High School Award scholarship, can they use it at another college or at the University’s Eastman School of Music?

No. Award winners are considered for the appropriate merit scholarship if admitted to the University of Rochester for undergraduate studies in Arts, Sciences & Engineering. Winners would not be able to use the scholarship at another institution or at the Eastman School of Music.

If a student receives this award, is it more likely they will be admitted to Rochester and receive a scholarship?

The Office of Admissions values the selection of students for these awards and considers this honor along with the rest of a student’s application. However, it does not guarantee admission to Rochester or the receipt of a merit scholarship. Please do not refer to these awards as scholarships at the University of Rochester.

How does an award winner process their application fee waiver to Rochester?

During the summer before their senior year, the student will receive an email from the Office of Admissions detailing how to note their fee waiver on the Common Application and/or the Coalition Application. The application fee should not be paid by high school award winners, as it is non-refundable.

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