The relationships developed between faculty and students in the pursuit of new scholarship is a hallmark of the undergraduate experience at Princeton University. In celebration of the transformative power of the mentoring that faculty give through their guidance of this independent research, the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students partners with the senior class to host the Gratitude Gala in late April each year.
Seniors are given an opportunity to invite a faculty member to a reception; it provides seniors with the chance to publicly thank faculty for their support at the moment when they’ve neared completion of their undergraduate degrees. Toasts are given by the senior class officers, and a faculty member is asked to speak on behalf of their colleagues. To get a better sense of the scope of this event, please review photos of previous Gratitude Galas.
Below are other considerations regarding the logistics of this event:
- The event is held in either the Princeton Art Museum or Chancellor Green Rotunda. Due to space limitations, pre-registration is required for this event.
- In February each year, members of the senior class are asked via email to nominate a faculty member they would like to invite to the Gratitude Gala. Invitations are accepted until we reach the capacity limit of the venue.
- Seniors may only invite faculty; we understand and gratefully recognize that there may be several administrative staff and fellow students, both graduate and undergraduate, who play a foundational role in the intellectual and academic development of seniors. That said, the both the nature of the event and the capacity of the venue have led us to prioritize teaching faculty for this particular event.
- Seniors can invite any faculty member; it is not restricted to senior thesis advisors.
- Seniors can only invite one faculty member. If the faculty member you would like to invite has already been invited, you will receive notice to invite someone else.
- When faculty are invited to the gala, they receive the name(s) of the student inviting them. There is not an option to invite faculty anonymously.
- Our hope is that the Gratitude Gala will be an occasion for faculty to meet other faculty and students beyond who they already know; we keep the remarks brief and do our best to create a lively and casual social atmosphere. To this end, everyone is given nametags with departmental designations.
- There is a professional photographer on site so that students may be able to get photos with the mentors who played a transformational role in their journey at Princeton.
For more questions about this event, please email [email protected] or call our office at 609-258-5750.
We are grateful for the financial support from the Office of the Dean of the Faculty.