The PAVE Educator of the Year Award honors and celebrates a full-time educator for their outstanding accomplishments and commitment to design education. The Educator of the Year Honoree consistently engages and inspires their students in new and exciting ways, seeks resources and opportunities beyond the classroom to enrich the current curriculum, demonstrates strong leadership within their department, makes significant contributions to the profession, and demonstrates excellence in teaching.

Award Overview

Eligibility Criteria
  • Nominees must be current, full-time, tenured or adjunct professors.

  • Nominees must have a minimum of 7 years of experience in a post-secondary program related to Interior Design, Architecture, Visual Merchandising, Engineering, Graphic Design, UX/UI Design, Industrial Design, Product Design, Experiential Design, or a similar area of study at any university, college, or recognized professional school.

  • Nominees must have a demonstrated history of-

    • Exhibiting excellence in teaching and consistently engaging and inspiring their students in new and innovative ways

    • Seeking resources and opportunities above and beyond the core curriculum (i.e. community involvement, design competitions, etc..)

    • Exhibiting strong leadership within their department

    • Making significant contributions to the profession


Judging Process

All nominations will be judged by a panel of industry professionals and educators not affiliated with the nominees. 


Note: Anyone who writes a letter of nomination or a letter of support for a nominee is ineligible to participate on the review panel for this award.



The Award
  • $1,500 to be awarded to the Educator of the Year

  • $1,500 to be awarded to the School/Department

  • Ticket to attend the PAVE Gala to be recognized

  • Travel stipend* for flight + hotel

  • Winners will also receive official digital assets for self-promotion, coverage via, PAVE's social media accounts, and an official press release.

* Travel stipend of $1,000 (maximum) will be provided for educators located outside of the NY/NJ area.


Presentation of Award

The recipient will be honored at the 2022 PAVE Gala in New York City on December 8, 2022.

Submission Requirements
  • Nomination Requirements

    • Letter of Nomination (min. 750 words)

      • Written by the Nominator, this letter should speak to the candidate's outstanding achievements and commitment to design education.

    • Curriculum Vitae (max 2 pages)

      • The candidate's CV to include experience and accomplishments relevant to this award.

    • Academic/Classroom Project Outline

      • A brief description of the purpose, methods, and outcome of an innovation, sustainability, or community-focused project conducted with students/classes/studios that is above and beyond the scope of the core curriculum.​

      • The project must be from the last 3 years.

    • Mini Portfolio (max 5 pages)

      • Highlights of work/work samples that further support the candidate's CV and Academic Project Outline.​

      • It can include links to websites.

  • Support Letters (3 letters, min. 500 words each)

    • These letters should speak to the criteria and provide evidence to support their claims. 

    • Support letters should come from various sources, such as current students, alumni, colleagues, peers, administrators, industry professionals, etc.

  • Headshot (Optional)

    • JPG or TIFF, at least 5x5 inches at 300 dpi

  • All documents should be submitted as individual PDFs (except for the headshot) through the Submittable platform.

  • Nominations are free and can be made by an industry peer, colleague, or administrator of the candidate.

Nomination Deadline:

Thursday, October 27, 2022,

by 11:59 PM Eastern

Have Questions?

Please contact PAVE at