Skip to main content

Research Leadership Academy Nomination Criteria

The vision of the RLA is to promote excellence in discovery and creative inquiry and build scholarly connections across NC State.


 The Alumni Association Outstanding Research Award and membership in the Research Leadership Academy is intended to recognize NC State’s leading scholars and faculty mentors. Members are expected to participate and contribute to the advancement of scholarship within the NC State academic community

The call for nominations for 2021 Alumni Association Outstanding Research Award are now closed. The call for 2022 nominations will be open beginning December 2021.

Description and Goals

The Research Leadership Academy (RLA) is the faculty-driven epicenter of research leadership and faculty mentoring enhancing NC State’s research and scholarship culture. The RLA is composed of the University’s most outstanding researchers from diverse fields; members are selected on their records of and active engagement in research and mentoring of faculty. The RLA is charged with the development and advocacy of best research and administrative practices for the development of the diverse research faculty at NC State.

Membership in the RLA is lifetime as long as the member is associated with NC State and agrees to a commitment of active service to the Academy for a minimum of three years. Members are expected to take an active role in promoting the research enterprise across campus by leading activities such as seminars, research and leadership education programs, and mentoring programs for faculty.

The goals of the RLA are:

  • to encourage a culture of faculty mentoring across campus,
  • empower faculty for success,
  • advance an intellectual, multidisciplinary research community, and
  • promote best administrative practices throughout the NC State research community.


All NC State faculty members including active tenured, tenure track, professional track, and administrators are eligible.

Selection Criteria

Nominees of the Outstanding Research Award should provide evidence of:

  • Excellence in discovery and/or innovation,
  • Long-term commitment to and excellence in mentoring of faculty at NC State, and
  • Record of, and desire to continue, service to the NC State research community.

Mentoring efforts may include, but are not limited to, counseling, facilitating the involvement of mentees in research projects, creation of and/or sharing knowledge about research opportunities, publicizing mentees’ contributions, actively working toward the success and promotion of junior faculty, and serving as role models by maintaining excellence in scholarship.

Service to the research community could include demonstrated contributions to the enhancement of the research culture and environment at NC State, such as the development of new research programs and initiatives.

Nomination and Selection Committee

For 2021 awards, each college may submit two (2) names for consideration. In addition, the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation’s Office and the Provost’s Office may submit up to two (2) nominations from each office.  In addition to the two (2) nominations, each college may nominate previous recipients of the Alumni Association’s Outstanding Research Award for membership in the RLA only.

Nominations must be received in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation by Wednesday, February 10, 2021 (see below for nomination package criteria). Announcements will be made at the 2021 Faculty Awards Ceremony Tuesday, April 13, 2021, which will most likely be held virtually via Zoom.

The Vice Chancellor, as chair, will appoint a committee to select four (4) names to put forward to the Alumni Association as recipients of the Outstanding Research Award and membership into the RLA.  Beyond these four (4) awardees, the committee may also select applicants who are previous Outstanding Research Award recipients for admission to the RLA only.  Committee members will consist of:

  • The Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Chair
  • URC Chair and Past-Chair (if not nominated in the current year)
  • A representative from the Provost’s office
  • Four current RLA members including chair and chair-elect

Nomination Package

  1. A letter of nomination from the Dean with justification for the nomination. Letter must be on letterhead with original signature.  Maximum: 2 pages.
  2. A letter from the nominee to the selection committee summarizing their leadership and mentoring activities with pertinent evidence of the impact their research and scholarship has had on their discipline and to NC State. Nominee must address the stated Selection Criteria in their letter. Letter must be on departmental letterhead (first page only) with subsequent pages using ¾” margins in Arial 11 pt. or Times New Roman 12 pt. font; single spaced with appropriate paragraph and character spacing. Maximum: 5 pages.
  3. The nominee’s complete vita. No page limit.
  4. Three letters of reference – two from NC State associated sources and one from non-NC State associated sources. Letters must be on letterhead with contact information and original signature.  Maximum: 3 pages each.

The deadline for 2021 nominations has passed. The call for 2022 nominations will be open beginning December 2021.

Please address questions to Laura Kroeger at