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Of-the-Month Awards

Of-the-Month awards (OTMs) are monthly appreciation and recognition awards administered by the Columbia National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH). All Columbia student leaders, faculty, staff, groups and programs are eligible if they demonstrate positive contributions to the residential community within the month of nomination and correspond with a category of recognition.

OTMs are awarded based on the qualities of the nominee as described in the nomination(s), not the quantity or quality of nomination(s) themselves. Below is a listing of award descriptions intended to help you nominate as precisely as possible. Our recognition flowchart is also available to guide you.

The NRHH meets monthly to review nominations and select awardees. Members have specific nomination and voting guidelines to mitigate conflict of interest.

In general, nominations are accepted during the first three weeks of the month, with submission deadlines on the last Thursday of each month at 11:59 pm. Any submissions after that time will be considered for the next month's cycle.

Submit an Of-the-Month Award nomination! 

Award Categories

Individual Awards

Group Awards

Program Awards

Award Descriptions

Individual Awards

  • Student of the Month (*) recognizes an individual resident for their active work in fostering a sense of community at Columbia, especially during the month of the award. Nominees could include, but are not limited to, students who have made a significant contribution to their floor or hall through leadership in programming, volunteering, advocating, and/or role modeling for other residents. Students who fit this description, but are in their first year at Columbia or are student staff members of the Office of Residential Life (i.e. RAs), are not eligible for this award; see First Year Student of the Month or Resident Adviser of the Month, respectively.
  • First Year Student of the Month (*) recognizes an individual resident who is in their first year at Columbia (including new transfer students) and excels at adapting to a new environment in their residence hall, taking an active role in their community, and positively impacting those around them. Nominees could include, but are not limited to, first year students who have made a significant contribution to their floor or hall through leadership in programming, volunteering, advocating, and/or role modeling for other students. Students who fit this description, but are student staff members of the Office of Residential Life (i.e. RAs), are not eligible for this award; see Resident Adviser of the Month.
  • Resident Adviser of the Month recognizes an individual Resident Adviser (RA) for their instrumental work in programming, education, community development, and crisis response. Nominees should have gone above and beyond the duties of their job in supporting residents in the communities in which they work, supported their fellow staff and Hall Council, and/or made outstanding contributions to the hall in which they work during the month of nomination.
  • Adviser of the Month recognizes an individual Graduate Hall Director (GHD), Residence Hall Director (RHD), or other staff member of Undergraduate Student Life who created a supportive environment for student leaders to grow, learn, and develop, especially during the month of nomination. Nominations should focus on the work of the nominee in directly advising Residential Life student staff, a Hall Council, Columbia RHLO, the Columbia chapter of the NRHH, and/or any other student organization. The awardee must be an employee of Undergraduate Student Life. Academic advisers, faculty advisers, study abroad advisers, religious life advisers, etc. are not as such eligible for this award; see University Faculty or Staff of the Month.
  • Residential Life Staff of the Month recognizes an individual employee of the Office of Residential Life who was a significant aid to residents during the month of nomination. This category is intended to recognize the Residential Life Staff who are not eligible for the Adviser of the Month category (if, for example, they did not advise students directly) and who have made significant contributions to the residence life community. Resident Advisers and Senior Resident Advisers are not eligible for this award; see Resident Adviser of the Month.
  • University Faculty or Staff of the Month recognizes Columbia University educators and other employees outside of Residential Life who aid students in their academic and/or personal affairs. This category is intended to recognize institutional faculty who have made a contribution to the Columbia community both in and out of the classroom. Examples include, but are not limited to: Professors, Instructors, Teaching Assistants, Advising Deans, Student Affairs or Academic Affairs Staff, Facilities/Maintenance Staff, Public Safety officers, Dining Services staff, and Health Services staff. Employees of Residential Life are not eligible for this award; see Residential Life Staff of the Month.

Group Awards

  • Organization of the Month recognizes organizations that have actively contributed to student leadership and involvement, recognition, or other aspects of communal life during the month of nomination. This award recognizes the organization as a whole, not just the accomplishments of a few members. Emphasis is placed on the successes of the organization in residence communities as well as how they have shaped campus life in general. Nominees could include, but are not limited to: Hall Councils, Executive Boards, Student Councils, Activities Boards, and in general, any organizations outside of the Residential Life that positively impact students. The Columbia Residence Hall Leadership Organization (as a whole) and the Columbia National Residence Hall Honorary are not eligible for this award. Special Interest Communities (SICs) are not eligible for this award; see Residential Community of the Month.
  • Residential Community of the Month recognizes residential communities, such as floors, suites, and halls. Nominations should emphasize what specifically a community has done within the month of nomination as well as how it has supported others, both within and outside the community. A successful nomination will additionally illustrate what brings such a group of individuals together and how they worked together as a group to accomplish their goals during the month of nomination. Greek organizations are not eligible for this award; see Organization of the Month.

Program Awards

  • Program of the Month recognizes any program (community service, diversity, educational, passive, social, or wellness-based) that had an exceptional impact on the lives of others.

* The awardee must be an undergraduate student in Columbia College or the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science and a contractual resident in a Columbia Housing undergraduate residence hall.

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