Student Prizes and Awards

McCormick believes in rewarding its undergraduates and graduating seniors who perform exceptionally well. As such, prizes and honors based on academic performance are given on a quarterly and annual basis to deserving students.

Jump to a Section

Undergraduate Awards

Dean's List

Each quarter, students who took a full-time course load (three or more units of credit) and received a grade point average of 3.75 or higher are recognized for outstanding academic achievement. These students are sent an Honors certificate. For those students with a perfect 4.0 grade point average in a quarter, the certificate notes High Honors.


McCormick students may apply for a wide range of fellowships for undergraduates. Some fellowships provide funding to attend graduate school; others allow you to study or to conduct research overseas to gain practical experience in your field of study.

Visit the Office of Fellowships for further information and guidance on how to apply and be successful in the application process.

Return to Top

Awards for Graduating Seniors

Each of the awards below is presented to students at the McCormick convocation ceremony.

Latin Honors

At graduation, a select group of students are awarded Latin Honors. Degrees with Latin Honors are awarded as follows:

  • Summa Cum Laude: the top five percent of McCormick graduates
  • Magna Cum Laude: the next eight percent of graduates
  • Cum Laude: the next 12 percent of graduates

Gotaas Award

In order to encourage exemplary engineering research, the Harold B. Gotaas Award is presented to a senior who has demonstrated excellence in research as an undergraduate. The award is bestowed in memory of Dr. Gotaas, a former Dean of the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science. Dr. Harold B. Gotaas earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Iowa State University and his doctorate from Harvard. Dr. Gotaas was selected Dean of Northwestern University Engineering in 1957. The Harold B. Gotaas Award is available to graduating McCormick seniors only. Applications are due Friday, May 3rd, 2024. 

Alumni Award

The McCormick Alumni Award is made to the graduating senior who has demonstrated outstanding service to the McCormick School of Engineering, to Northwestern University, and to the community, and who also has worthy scholastic achievement. Nominations are accepted each spring from members of the graduating class.

Eshbach Award

The Ovid W. Eshbach Award was established in 1948 by the first graduating class of what was then the Technological Institute and was named in honor of the first dean of the institute. The Eshbach Award is given for overall excellence in scholarship and leadership.

Each spring, nominations are accepted from the graduating class on who they feel most closely typifies the ideal engineering student.

Return to Top