The FGCU Faculty Senate voted on proposed changes for the Student of the Year award on Friday. The award, which only allowed one undergraduate and graduate Student of the Year, will now leave the decision up to the individual academic colleges.
According to the draft proposal, the number of students interested in the honor is decreasing.
According to the proposal, ”The interest in this award on the part of our students has diminished as evidenced by a downward trend in the number of applicants submitted and the overall quality of the pool of applicants.”
The approved proposal will leave the college’s faculty to establish their own criteria that students must meet before applying.
Prior to the changes, peers, administrators and community members could nominate a student if they had “direct knowledge” of the nominee’s qualifications.
Students were also required to compile a portfolio with statements about their leadership, evidence of various achievements, a letter of support from a faculty member and a letter from someone speaking to their commitment to service.
Billy Gunnels, a representative from the College of Arts and Sciences, said members of the college were worried about the esteem of the award.
“The college of arts and sciences had concerns about the dilution of the prestige of the award,” Gunnels said.
Faculty Senate approved the proposed changes 22 in favor, two against the changes and one abstention.