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New guidelines for honorary degrees approved

May 4, 2006

KALAMAZOO--Western Michigan University trustees, acting at their April 28 meeting, approved revised guidelines for recognizing individuals with an honorary degree from WMU.

The new guidelines spell out the award purpose, eligibility, criteria, the makeup of a committee charged with recommending the degrees, a procedure for nomination and consideration and a list of four appropriate honorary degree types and the work for which they will be conferred.

Honorary degrees, according to the new guidelines adopted, are used to recognize persons of outstanding achievement who exemplify the mission and purpose of WMU and whose exemplary lives and distinguished achievements serve as models of the University's ideals and aspirations for students, faculty, staff and alumni.

Over the years, WMU has awarded honorary degrees to individuals ranging from Nelson Mandela and Michigan artist Gwen Frostic to WMU Theatre patriarch Zack York and Yoshimi Takeda, who conducted the Kalamazoo Symphony.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, (269) 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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