Ronald W. Hyatt Rotary Public Service Award

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The Ronald W. Hyatt Rotary Public Service Award is given annually in support of innovative public service projects that exemplify the motto of Rotary International, “Service above Self.” The award, sponsored by the Chapel Hill Rotary Club, is named for the late Dr. Ronald W. Hyatt, professor of Exercise and Sport Science at UNC-Chapel Hill and long-time member of the Chapel Hill Rotary Club, in recognition of his distinguished career at the University and his commitment to helping others. Three awards will be given this year. The Carolina Center for Public Service administers this award.


  • Undergraduate or graduate students at UNC-Chapel Hill, individually or in teams.
  • Recognized UNC-Chapel Hill student organizations.
  • Applicants must be continuing their studies at UNC-Chapel Hill in the following fall semester.

Submission Guidelines

Submission guidelines include the following:

  • A justification of need and a description of how the service you will provide or the project you will complete adds to or complements what is already available;
  • A concise description of the project and how you will carry it out, including a description of the personnel involved;
  • Specific outcomes and how you will measure them;
  • An estimate of the impact of the project and the likelihood that the project will continue after the award period has ended;
  • An approximate timeline you will follow; and
  • A project budget that does not request more than $3,000 if international and $2,000 if local and describes the sources and amounts of any other funding.

If the project will be conducted in cooperation with or receive financial or other support from a governmental agency or private sector organization, applicants are asked to submit a letter of commitment from each such agency, which can be uploaded with the application.

Nominations for the Ronald W. Hyatt Rotary Public Service Award open Dec. 1 and close Feb. 8, 2017. Nominations are accepted at the Carolina Center for Public Service Application and Nomination Portal. For questions, email or call 919-843-7568.

2015 award recipients

The United Solar Initiative
Founded by a Carolina undergraduate, this organization was created in partnership with Strata Solar. A student team from Kenan-Flagler Business school received the award for their “Bringing Electricity to Energy Desserts in Nicaragua” project. They will use the funds to install a solar panel system on a school in Colocondo, Nicaragua, which will generate electricity for the entire community.

Refugee Youth Leadership and Empowerment
This project is focused on youth-led community development. The Hyatt Award will provide support for local youth who are refugees to obtain training as professional interpreters in their native languages, meeting a demonstrated need for interpreters in the rare languages represented among local refugee populations.

Classroom to Community
Affiliated with UNC Student Health Action Coalition (SHAC), this project recruits and trains volunteers from UNC Health Affairs graduate schools to provide health education for an underserved school in Durham, NC. This program not only benefits the elementary school student, it also provides important experience for UNC graduate students.