Recognize an Alumna/us for Their Service

alumni awards

Each year, the College presents three service awards to alumni: the Arabella Carter Award, the Joseph Shane Award, and the Eugene Lang Impact Award. If you know of an alum who you think exemplifies the qualities that these awards honor, please let us know about them, and include your own reasons for choosing this individual, by contacting Geoff Semenuk, associate director of Alumni Relations.

Arabella Carter Award

Do you know of a classmate or another Swarthmore alumnus/a who goes above and beyond the call of duty in his or her volunteer work? Honor them with a nomination for the Arabella Carter Award.

Arabella Carter was one of the great unsung heroes who worked for peace and social justice in Philadelphia Yearly Meeting in the early 1900s. She never sought publicity or recognition for her work and was largely forgotten by all but Friends Historical Library archivists, who saw her hand in Quaker peace and social justice work over three decades. She appears to have received no monetary compensation for all these services, living simply on family money.

The award, established in 1997 by the Alumni Council and presented each year at reunion, honors alumni who have made significant contributions as volunteers in their own communities or on a regional or national level. The Council hopes to honor alumni whose volunteer service is relatively unknown.    

Joseph Shane Award

Do you know of a classmate or another Swarthmore alumnus/a who, over an extended period of time, has contributed both time and service to significantly benefit the College? Honor them with a nomination for the Joseph Shane Award.

The Shane Award was established in 1985 in honor of the late Joseph B. Shane '25, who served Swarthmore College as vice president for alumni affairs and public relations for more than 21 years.

Joe's service to the College went beyond a simple job description - his warmth, humor, dedication to the College, and Quaker spirit made a lasting mark on Swarthmore and all who knew him.

Monetary gifts may, but need not be, considered in evaluating nominees for the award. Final selection of the recipient(s) is made by the Executive Committee of the Alumni Association. The award is presented each year at reunion. 

Eugene M. Lang Impact Award

Do you know of a classmate or another Swarthmore alumnus/a who, in his or her vocation, has made an impact on society at large? Honor them with a nomination for the Eugene Lang Impact Award. 

The Eugene Lang Impact Award was established in 2010 by the Alumni Council. It was named for its first recipient, Eugene Lang, a longtime supporter of Swarthmore College who has been described as "a father of innovation." 

Founder of the "I Have a Dream" Foundation and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Eugene Lang '38 has a long history of philanthropic involvement with Swarthmore. His gifts to the College include the Lang Music Building, the Eugene and Theresa Lang Performing Arts Center, the Lang Center for Civic & Social Responsibility, endowed professorships, support for faculty research and student financial aid, the Lang Summer Social Action Awards, and the Lang Opportunity Scholars Program, which provides funds for students to design and carry out innovative service projects. He is also the founder of Project Pericles, a national organization of colleges and universities working to encourage and facilitate inclusion of education for social responsibility and participatory citizenship as an essential part of their educational programs. On September 22, 2008, Mr. Lang was named "Joseph H. Kanter Citizen of The Year" by the National Conference on Citizenship, a leading advocate of civic engagement

Receiving recognition for their achievements does not diqualify a nominee from winning, as this is a lifelong achievement award.