The McMaster Graduate Students Association (GSA) looks to recognize exceptional students and staff through annually distributed awards.

Students are notified of a Call of Nominations in June.  It is then that award applications are available.

Awards are distributed at the SGS/GSA Graduate Student Recognition Day, which is held annually in September/October.  Awards from both the School of Graduate Studies (SGS) and the GSA are presented at this event.

Below is a list of awards administered by the GSA.  Full descriptions will be available with the applications during the period for nominations. Please send the completed applications to

Nominations for the May 2018-April 2019 are now being accepted. Nomination deadline is September 24, 2019. 

Award Description Normal Value
GSA Award for Contributions by Non-Academic Staff


This award honours the extraordinary contributions that members of McMaster University’s support staff extend to its graduate students.  The award winner receives a letter of appreciation and $200 cash prize. $200
Therese Quigley Award of Excellence for Graduate Student Leadership in Athletics


This award recognizes excellence in leadership in athletics.  Individuals nominated for the Therese Quigley Award exhibit leadership in sporting activities, either competitive or recreational, by encouraging participation, team building, and commitment to sportsmanship. Trophy or Plaque & $200
Mary Keyes Award for Outstanding Leadership and Service to McMaster

This award is named in memory of Dr. Mary Keyes, Associate Vice President (Student Affairs).  The award acknowledges graduate students who give their time, spirit and energy to McMaster student societies, university committees and/or governing bodies. Students who exhibit excellence in leadership, generosity of spirit, and initiative for the betterment of the graduate student experience and McMaster community have been nominated for this award. Trophy or Plaque & $200
GSA Keith Leppmann Teaching Assistant Excellence Award


This award honours the contributions that teaching assistants make to undergraduate education at McMaster University.  Established by the GSA and the Leppmann family, each year, the Academic Affairs Committee accepts nominations from undergraduate students and evaluates nominees on the following criteria: (1) commitment to teaching; (2) reliability; (3) enthusiasm for the subject matter; (4) personality; (5) adaptability; and (6) communication skills. $375
GSA Millennium Award for Community Service


Established in 2001 by the Graduate Students Association through its contribution to Canada’s “Our Millennium” Project.  To be awarded annually to two graduate students who demonstrate commitment to the community-at-large through volunteer activities. $250