Honorary Degree Committee

Elected officials or those running for office are not eligible for honorary degrees.

Dear USF Community,

On behalf of the Honorary Degree Committee at the University of San Francisco, I encourage you to take part in the University's longstanding tradition to recognize worthy individuals with the highest academic recognition it can bestow: an Honorary Degree.

For more than a century, the University of San Francisco has conferred honorary degrees on a selective basis to recognize uncommon merit and outstanding personal accomplishment. Recipients have included Melba Pattillo Beals, Member of the Little Rock Nine, Civil Rights Pioneer, Accomplished Journalist, Author and Educator; Nínive Clements Calegari, Educator and CEO of Enterprise for Youth; Helen Zia, Author and Activist; Kimberly Bryant, Founder and CEO of Black Girls Code; Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony; Marian Wright Edelman, Founder and President of Children’s Defense Fund; Shirin Ebadi, 2003 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate; Catholic Women Religious in the United States; His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama; and Major General Antonio Mario Taguba, (Ret.).

Recipients embody the University's mission and goals. They help fashion a more just and humane world and demonstrate that the common good transcends the interests of particular individuals or groups.

Nominees are evaluated based on fit with the University’s mission and goals, community service, academic excellence, personal and moral integrity, and peer recognition.

All members of the University community are invited to nominate candidates of extraordinary excellence and character. Please refer to the links at the left for nomination criteria and guidelines, the online nomination form, and samples of successful nominations.

Sincerest regards,

Desiree Shaw
Chair, Honorary Degree Committee