NASPA Announces the 2020 Virtual Innovation Awards Recipients

The Center / January 26, 2021

Virtual Innovation Awards



The Virtual Innovation Awards recognizes excellence in delivering virtual student services, and provides an opportunity to spotlight the innovation happening at recipient institutions. By receiving this award, these institutions become virtual engagement models in the field.



On Tuesday, January 26, 2021, NASPA recognized ten higher education institutions that deliver exemplary virtual support to students. The top three institutions received $50,000 with the remaining awarded $15,000. In addition to receiving a monetary award, recipients are slated to present their innovative virtual programs and services during NASPA’s virtual learning event on February 24, 2021.

By demonstrating innovation and scale, several recipients detailed support offerings dedicated to first-generation students. The five institutions listed below participate in Center for First-generation Student Success-led initiatives, First Scholars and First-gen Forward, with two receiving the top prize. Northern Arizona University, Borough of Manhattan Community College, and the University of Florida serve as First-gen Forward Advisory Institutions as well.

  • Borough of Manhattan Community College *
  • Northern Arizona University *
  • San Diego State University
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Florida

*Indicated $50,000 award winner.

Given the disproportionate impacts the COVID-19 pandemic has had on first-generation students and the value of innovation in virtual learning to support the persistence and completion of this population, the Center extends profound gratitude and congratulations to all of these outstanding institutions. The full list of recipients can be viewed in the press release.