Awards for Majors

William and Mary recognizes superior academic achievement with traditional Latin honors. A student with an overall final GPA of 3.5 receives the degree cum laude; 3.65, magna cum laude; and 3.8, summa cum laude. The College also recognizes undergraduate achievement through selection to the Alpha of Virginia Chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Society. Twice a year, the Chapter elects as members a small number of senior students who are B.A. and B.S. candidates, and who have demonstrated outstanding scholarship, a range of intellectual interests, and good character.

The History Department distinguishes majors' outstanding work through the following awards, all of which include a monetary gift:

  • The Lyon Gardiner Tyler Award for a Rising Senior
    This award was instituted in 2001 through the generosity of the Harrison Tyler family, in honor of Mr. Harrison Tyler's father, Lyon Gardiner Tyler, past president of the College. Aimed at supporting work on an honor's thesis, it is awarded at the beginning of the fall semester to the rising senior history major with the highest major and overall GPA to support work on an honors thesis.
  • The Donald B. Irwin Memorial Scholarship
    Established in 1996 through an endowment established by the late Donald B. Irwin, Class of 1960, this scholarship is used to provide support to a distinguished rising junior major in History who has unfunded financial need, as determined by the Office of Financial Aid.
  • The John F. Kroeger Memorial Scholarship for a Rising Senior
    Endowed in 1999 by the family and friends of the late John F. Kroeger, this award is announced at the beginning of each fall semester and goes to an academically distinguished rising senior majoring in history, with a preference given to a student studying American history.
  • The William Elbert Fraley Award
    Established in 1969 by the William Elbert Fraley Memorial Trust, this award is given annually at commencement to the major receiving the highest degree of Honors in History. It may be split among multiple recipients.
  • The Ellen Monk Krattiger Award
    Established in 1984 by a bequest from Ellen Monk Krattiger, the Krattiger Award is given annually to a junior or senior major who has displayed conspicuous talent and achievement, evidenced through an honors thesis or other substantial research paper, in the study of colonial North America north of Mexico, including the Caribbean, or, if no award is made in those areas, in the study of colonial Mexico.
  • The Richard Lee Morton Scholarship
    This award was initiated by a group of History majors in 1960 as a memorial to Dr. Morton at the time of his retirement from the College. The recipient of the Morton Scholarship is selected on the basis of scholastic merit, with character also taken into account. The Morton Scholarship is awarded at graduation.