Pal & Pickle Awards : Now accepting applications

How to apply

 

note icon

The application period for the 2024 awards is open from Monday, February 5 to Sunday, March 3.

All completed packets must be submitted no later than 6:00 pm, Sunday, March 3 to dawn.kingdon@austin.utexas.edu

 

Nominations

note icon

Faculty and staff may nominate a student for one or both awards. 

The nomination period for the 2024 awards is open Monday, February 5 to 6 pm, Monday, February 19.




 

 

Pal-Make A Difference Award

The Pal-Make A Difference Award is presented annually to a UT Austin student whose individual program or initiative has made a significant contribution to campus life or the broader community.

Brian Shivers, Katherine Ospina, Amy Welborn, Mulugeta Ferede

 

The 2023 recipient is Katherine Ospina (pictured here with Brian Shivers, Amy Welborn and Mulugeta Ferede). The committee that selected this year’s awardee was impressed with her self-directed focus on addressing food insecurity on West Campus. She organized and led varying interests on campus to work together to implement a weekly food re-distribution program run by student volunteers. The program reallocated excess food from sorority houses and cooperative living communities to meet the needs of students living around West Campus.  

picture of honoree

The Pal-Make a Difference Award is an endowed award, established in 2006 by University Unions Advisory Council member Jaspreet Singh Pal (BBA ’95) to encourage university leadership and public service. The recipient is awarded $1,500 and a certificate.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Current enrollment at The University of Texas at Austin
  • Submission of a completed application by the deadline

The application consists of:

  • Candidate information form 
  • Personal statement describing a specific program or initiative that benefited UT campus life or the broader community
  • One letter of recommendation from a University of Texas faculty, staff or fellow student

J. J. "Jake" Pickle Citizenship Award

The J.J. "Jake" Pickle Citizenship Award is presented annually to a UT Austin student whose cumulative and notable contributions to campus life exemplify the high standards of leadership and service that were the hallmarks of the life and career of Congressman Pickle. 

Bergan Casey, Peggy Pickle, Leland Murphy, Brian Shivers, Amy Welborn, Mulugeta Ferede

The 2023 recipient is Leland Murphy (pictured here with Bergan Casey, J.J. Pickle’s granddaughter; Peggy Pickle, J.J. Pickle’s daughter; Brian Shivers; Amy Welborn and Mulugeta Ferede). The committee was impressed with his consistent quality of going above and beyond in his projects and responsibilities. What was also notable was his all-encompassing view of citizenship. He has a clear understanding that while you will not agree with all sides, you must listen to all to understand them. He has served in multiple student-focused areas including Student Government, UT Senate of College Councils, Texas Blazers and Longhorn Together Peer Mentor. One of his many accomplishments include the Student Government Monthly Community Food Distribution Program, which put Student Government resources back into the hands of students to address one of their most fundamental needs.

picture of honoree

The J. J. "Jake" Pickle Citizenship Award is an endowed student award created by the University Unions Advisory Council in 1999. It is presented annually to a student at UT Austin who makes cumulative, notable contributions to campus life over a period of time and epitomizes the values of Congressman Pickle. The recipient is awarded $5,000, a certificate and an autographed copy of Congressman Pickle’s autobiography "Jake."

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Good academic standing
  • Current enrollment as a full-time undergraduate or graduate student (exception: full-time status is not a requirement for graduating seniors)
  • Submission of a completed application by the deadline

    (Note: scholarship and academic performance are not considered beyond good academic standing)

The application consists of:

  • One-page personal statement that highlights UT campus involvement and leadership activities and describes organization and club memberships
  • Candidate information form (enclosed in application packet)
  • Résumé
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • 750-word essay on a specified topic (see application for details)

William Andrew Smith, Jr. GRASP Award Recipients

The Grants for Active Student Participants (GRASP) endowment was created in 2006 through the generosity of the members and was named in honor of past Unions' Executive Director Andy Smith in 2013. 

Brian Shivers, Evelyn Haskins, Amy Welborn, Mulugeta Ferede

The purpose of the William Andrew Smith, Jr. GRASP Award is to encourage and facilitate continued participation, particularly by freshman and sophomore students, in University Unions committees and programs by providing awards to students who have demonstrated leadership qualities, an enthusiasm for campus citizenship and solid academic performance.

William Andrew Smith, Jr.

The 2023 recipients of the GRASP award are Hiba Soban and Evelyn Haskins (pictured here with Brian Shivers, Amy Welborn and Mulugeta Ferede). The awardees impressed the committee with their leadership, commitment and enthusiasm through their work with the University Unions’ Events and Entertainment organization. These students exhibit the core values of UT Austin, and the selection committee believes they will continue to positively contribute to the Unions and create opportunities for their peers. 

The GRants for Active Student Participants (GRASP) endowment was created in 2006 through the generosity of the University Unions Advisory Council. It was renamed the William Andrew Smith, Jr. GRASP Award in 2013. The purpose of the award is to encourage and facilitate the continued student participation in University Unions committees and organizations. Stipends are awarded yearly to up to two students who have demonstrated leadership qualities, an enthusiasm for campus citizenship, and who, for various reasons, might be unable to participate without support. Preference is given to freshmen and sophomores. The E+E president is not eligible to apply. $1,500 is awarded to each recipient. 

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Enrollment at The University of Texas at Austin for the current semester and the intention to enroll in the upcoming long semester
  • Is active within Campus Events + Entertainment
  • Maintains good academic standing.

Selection Committee:

  • Current Board of Directors Chair
  • University Unions Business Services Director
  • Director for Student Programming
  • Additional E+E staff as designated by the Director for Student Programming

The application consists of:

A brief personal statement, no more than one page, including the expression of the need for supplemental aid, a description of committee involvement, and how the stipend would facilitate continued participation. Attach to the personal statement a candidate information sheet, including full name, EID, expected graduation year, email address, local mailing address, phone number and a summary of E+E involvement.