Snowball Awards

Every year, the CS Society hosts our annual awards gala, Snowball. In an effort to make future events’ organization smoother, below is documentation on the awards given out each year.

Faculty-Given Awards

Each year, the Faculty of Computer Science gives out a number of awards at Snowball. Some require recipients to be nominated by other students, some are based on academic performance, and the co-op award is based on its own criteria. More information can be found on the Faculty of Computer Science website.

Nomination Based Awards

All these awards are given to students based on nominations recieved by the Faculty. An e-mail is typically sent out to all CS Students asking for nominations, which can be submitted to Kate Millar in the front office. At some point, the Undergraduate Committee will hold a meeting to determine the winners of these awards. The CS Society is usually asked to have one student on the committee to help provide input in the selection process.
All students must be in good academic standing, and have completed at least 4 credits in the previous year as an undergraduate, OR be in good academic standing, and be a registered graduate student.

  • Ada Byron Award
    This award is given out once per year to a female student, and is worth $3000.00.The Ada Byron Award recognizes the leadership and contributions of an individual to increase and promote the involvement of women in computer science. Individuals must demonstrate leadership in and significant contributions towards increasing and promoting the involvement of women in computer science. For example, students may demonstrate this by playing a leadership role in events which encourage women to pursue careers in computer science. Secondary Selection Criteria: Providing a positive role model for women in computer science; contributing voluntarily to the life of the Faculty of Computer Science and/or the broader Dalhousie University community; being known as a congenial, reliable, mature person who is respected by peers and Faculty; exemplifying motivation and encouragement; demonstrating strong academic performance.
  • Leadership Award
    This award is given out once per year, and is worth $2000.00.The Leadership Award recognizes the leadership and contributions of an individual in building a community atmosphere within the Faculty of Computer Science. Individuals must demonstrate leadership in and significant contributions towards building a community atmosphere within the Faculty of Computer Science. For example, students may demonstrate this by showing leadership in and contributing voluntarily to the life of the Faculty of Computer Science and/or the broader Dalhousie University community. Secondary Selection Criteria: Being known as a congenial, reliable, mature person who is respected by peers and Faculty; exemplifying motivation and encouragement; demonstrating strong academic performance.
  • Citizenship Award
    This award is given out once per year, and is worth $1000.00. Multiple recipients per year are allowedThe Citizenship Award recognizes the contributions of an individual to build a community atmosphere within the Faculty of Computer Science. Individuals must demonstrate contributions towards building a community atmosphere within the Faculty of Computer Science. For example, students may demonstrate this by contributing voluntarily to the life of the Faculty of Computer Science and/or the broader Dalhousie University community. Secondary Selection Criteria: being known as a congenial, reliable, mature person who is respected by peers and Faculty; exemplifying motivation and encouragement; demonstrating strong academic performance.
Academic Awards

These awards are given automatically to the students with the highest academic performance in the previous year. Specifically, the nine 2nd, 3rd, and 4th year students with the highest performance in the previous year (Three students per year) are given the awards. The Gold Award, given to the top student of each year, is worth $2500.00. The Silver Award and Bronze Award are similarly given to the second- and third-best students, and worth $2000.00 and $1500.00, respectively.

CS Society-Given Awards

  • The Srini Award for Teaching Excellence
    This award is given to a professor that positively impacts the students’ learning the most. This award cannot be presented to the same Professor 2 years in a row.
  • The Staff Appreciation Award
    This award is given out to a staff member in the Faculty who has done the most to make the students’ experience a rewarding one. This award cannot be presented to the same staff member 2 years in a row.
  • The Best T.A Award
    This award is given to a Teaching Assistant that has gone above and beyond in helping students learn and achieve their goals.
  • The Root Award

    The Root Award is the Computer Science Society’s single highest honour. It is given only when a student has reached an incredible level of accomplishment that they leave a lasting impression on the Faculty and the Society for years to come.

    1. Criteria
      The recipient has:

      • A proven record of contribution to the Faculty and to the Society over the span of his/her degree(s).
      • Must have received at least two leadership and/or citizenship awards from the Faculty.
      • An exceptional academic record at Dal.
    2. Nominations
      Nominations must be made in writing to the Computer Science Society Council by any of the following parties:

      • The governing body of an active society within the Faculty of Computer Science. The definition of an active society within the Faculty is dependent on the interpretation of the Computer Science Society Council.
      • Another student, or alumni of the Faculty.
      • A Faculty member.
      • A committee within the Faculty
    3. The nominee(s):

      • Must be in the final year of their undergraduate degree, or be a graduate student, or an alumnus with significant proven contribution to the Society and/or Faculty.
      • Must submit a curriculum vitae (CV) to the council, along with a description of all activities undertaken that impacted the Society and/or the Faculty.
    4. Decision

      • Decision on whether the nominee(s) receives the award or not is entirely up to the Computer Science Society Council.
      • Each nominee must be evaluated individually.
      • The Council shall hold an in camera discussion and vote. For the award to be given, a motion must pass with at least 3⁄4 of all votes.

    Note that while the criteria above are a very good guideline, a student merely reaching those goals should not automatically be given a Root Award; the award is specifically for those students who have gone far above and beyond any reasonable expectations in helping the Society, the Faculty, and even the University, and whose names will be spoken years after they graduate.

    As a result of the rare circumstances in which a Root Award should be given, they typically only occur once every 3-4 years. To date (2012), only the following five students have recieved the Root Award:

    • Mike Smit
    • Sean Smith
    • John Doucette
    • Mike Porter
    • Ozge Yeloglu