Whether you are seeking nomination or looking to nominate a colleague dedicated to the profession, these 10 tips can help create nomination success.
- Is your nominee right for the award?
Know the intent of the award and the required nomination components. Read the criteria for each honor and award carefully. Be realistic. These are the nutrition and dietetics profession’s top awards. It is a very rigorous and competitive process. If the person or program you have in mind does not meet the stated qualifications, you should not submit a packet. An award will not be bestowed in any given year if submissions do not meet all of the criteria.
- Submit a concise, well-written nomination packet.
Complete, well-written, but concise nomination packets are more likely to be successful. Use an active voice when writing.
- Provide a complete overview of your nominee or program.
A peer review process, using very specific, clearly defined scoring criteria, is used to review and rate the honors and awards submissions. Only the information in the packet that is electronically submitted is considered. Don't assume that the reviewers will know your candidate — you must include all of their accomplishments in the packet submittal.
- Create a unique picture of your nominee.
Once again, this process is competitive. Your nomination packet must stand out among all the others that have been submitted if your candidate is to be one of the 30 percent that are selected for the Academy’s prestigious national honors and awards. Put yourself in the reviewers’ shoes. Your nomination will be judged by dietetics peers. Make sure your nomination clearly describes the uniqueness of your candidate.
- Solicit information from others to strengthen the nomination.
Be sure to solicit information from others to strengthen the submission. Also, two heads are better than one — invite some colleagues to give you feedback and other ideas about the accomplishments of your nominee and how you've presented it. Their insights may make your nomination more robust.
- Be objective.
Submit objective information to support testimonials or statements made by colleagues whenever possible. Review all nomination materials for consistency before submitting the electronic packet.
- Make an impact.
Clearly describe how the specific, unique qualifications and contributions of your candidate or program have made a distinct impact on the nutrition and dietetics profession.
Don't wait until the last minute to prepare your awards submission. Maintain an awards file. Most criteria remain very constant from year to year and changes in procedure are minimal. Gather materials early and allow plenty of time for review. Compile all nomination materials prior to initiating the online nomination process. Though you can "save" what you’ve done and go back later to complete the packet, it will make your submission process much smoother and hassle-free if you have all the necessary components compiled before you begin.
- Keep it brief — check the CV length.
Honors Committee members have many, many electronic packets to review. Don’t write a book. Well written, concise nominations are easier to read than long-winded accounts that are many pages in length. Focus on quality, not quantity. To ensure that the Committee has the most concise, impactful information about your candidate, you may want to encourage any candidate with a CV longer than 25 pages to develop a more succinct and readable version for the purpose of this packet submission.
- If at first you don't succeed…resubmit!
Many excellent submissions are received annually. Based on the large number of nominations received, only about 30 percent of submissions become recipients. Your candidate may not be selected this year. That's okay; as long as you are sure the individual meets all of the honor or award qualifications, feel free to submit the packet again next year. The Academy maintains the electronic packets within the submission platform. Simply review and update the submission next year…and resubmit.