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Undergraduate Student Life

Of-the-Month Awards

Of-the-Months (OTMs) are monthly appreciation and recognition awards which are administered and awarded by the campus chapter of the National Residence Hall Honorary. All Columbia student leaders, faculty, staff, groups, and programs are eligible if they correspond with a category of recognition and contributed towards a residential community within the appropriate period of nomination.

While multiple nominations for individuals, groups and/or programs are permitted and welcome, please note that multiple nominations do not increase the chances of an individual or program receiving an award, and that a individual, group, or program should not be nominated by the same person for more than one category. Below is a listing of award descriptions intended to help individuals nominate as precisely as possible. We encourage nominations to be explicit in their explanation of why an individual, group or program should receive an award. Examples and supporting evidence are also strongly encouraged.

The NRHH meets each month to review nominations and select Of-the-Month awardees. Each residential area is represented in the NRHH to ensure a fair review. Any nominees who are members of the NRHH or who have a similar conflict of interest will recuse themselves from voting for all awards for which they are nominated and all awards in which they have a conflcit of interest. In general, nominations are accepted for the current month during the first three weeks, ending on a Saturday at 11:00 pm. Any submissions after that time will be considered for an award the next month.

Nominate an individual, group, or program for an OTM or view past OTM winners.

Award Categories

Individual Awards

Group Awards

Program Awards

OTM Award Nomination Form

Award Descriptions

Individual Awards

  • Resident of the Month (*) recognizes residents from the residential community for their active work in fostering a sense of community within the residence halls. Nominees could include, but are not limited to, students who have made a contribution to their floor, hall, or Hall Council through leadership, motivation, programming, volunteering, and/or serving as a role model for other residents, especially during the month of nomination. Also important is the nominee's balance of leadership, involvement, and academics. Students who fit this description, but are in their first year at Columbia, are not eligible for this award, and should instead be nominated for the First Year Resident of the Month award. (BACK TO LIST)
  • First Year Resident of the Month (*) recognizes residents who are first-year students (including transfer students for whom this is the first year at Columbia) who excel in adapting to a new environment within their residence hall, take an active role in their community, and positively impact those around them. Submissions in this category are also welcome to emphasize a student's balance of academics, leadership, involvement, and contributions to community, floor or suite, or hall life. Students who fit this description, but are not in their first year at Columbia, are not eligble for this award, and should instead be nominated for the Resident of the Month award. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Resident Adviser of the Month recognizes the instrumental work RAs play in programming, educating, 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 residence life organizations, and/or made outstanding contributions to the hall in which they work during the month of nomination. A nomination should focus on the nominee’s accomplishments within and beyond the RA role. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Community Adviser of the Month recognizes CAs who have gone above and beyond in their work in areas such as programming, peer-advising, and supporting staff. Nominees should have gone above and beyond the particular duties of their job in facilitating community development in the communities in which they work, effectively organized their Hall Councils, and/or made outstanding contributions to the hall in which they work during the month of nomination. A nomination should focus on the nominee’s accomplishments within and beyond the CA role. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Executive Board Member of the Month recognizes RHLO and NRHH executive board members, including Hall Representatives, with outstanding contributions to residence life across campus. Nominees should have gone above and beyond the capacities of their roles on the executive board, and demonstrated a commitment to leadership, involvement, and/or mentorship. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Adviser of the Month recognizes outstanding Graduate Hall Directors (GHDs), Residence Hall Directors (RHDs), and Associate Directors of Residential Life (ADs) who create a supportive environment for student leaders to grow, learn, and develop. Nominations should focus on the work of the nominee in advising a Hall Council, Columbia RHLO, or the Columbia chapter of the NRHH. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Residence Life Staff of the Month recognizes individuals who aid residents within the residence life community. This category is intended to recognize the Residence Life Staff who are not eligible for the Adviser of the Month category and who have made significant contributions to the residence life community. (BACK TO LIST)
  • University Faculty or Staff of the Month recognizes Columbia University employees outside of residence 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 residence life 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. (BACK TO LIST)

Group Awards

  • Organization of the Month recognizes organizations that have actively contributed to student leadership and involvement, recognition, or other aspects of residence life during the month of nomination. This award recognizes the organization as a whole, and 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. Examples 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 resident students. Columbia RHLO (writ large as a campus whole) and the Columbia chapter of the NRHH are not eligible for this award. (BACK TO LIST)
  • 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 their community. The nominated community must not be an official campus organization (eg, Greek organizations and Special Interest Communities are not eligible for this award, but may be eligible for the Spotlight or Organization award). The successful nomination will additionally illustrate what brings a group of individuals together and how they worked together as a group to accomplish their goals during the month of nomination. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Spotlight of the Month recognizes outstanding members of the Columbia residential community beyond Residential Life including, but not limited to, members of the Public Safety team, CU-EMS, Special Interest Communitys (SICs), Greek organizations, Housing Services staff, Alice! staff, and staff in other University offices. In general, any group or individual that has contributed to campus life but does not fall within any other category is eligible for this award. (BACK TO LIST)

PROGRAM AWARDS

  • Community Service Program of the Month recognizes service projects that have an exceptional impact on the lives of others, including service or philanthropic programs that benefit groups, charitys, or other organization. The program nominated must have been initiated by a residence-based organization or must otherwise have emphasized the importance of the residents giving back to the broader communities in which they live. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Diversity Program of the Month recognizes programs that challenge students around issues of race, religion, sexuality, socio-economic status, gender and other identities and their relation to power and privilege. Such programs must illustrate the importance of promoting diversity in residence halls as well as embracing diversity in the every-day lives of residents. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Educational/Academic Program of the Month recognizes programs that engage students in education about a topic, idea, or issue beyond their classroom settings. Programs nominated for this category may include but are not limited to academic success programming, leadership development, speaker series, career planning, or promoting global citizenship. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Passive Program of the Month recognizes any program that does not require anyone to actively run or administer it for people to participate in it. This category is generally intended to recognize residential programming that occurs through bulletin boards, newsletters, pamphlets, and social media. (BACK TO LIST)
  • Social Program of the Month recognizes programs that help build community or transition students to a new environment, with a particular emphasis on programs that focus on resident interaction and/or networking. Social programs may range in scale from residence hall floor to campus. (BACK TO LIST)

OTM Award Nomination Form

* Nominees for this award must be undergraduate students in Columbia College or the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science and residents in Columbia Housing residence halls. Nominees cannot be employees of Residential Life (see the Resident Adviser and Community Adviser awards) or members of the RHLO or NRHH executive boards (see Executive Board Member award).

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