The Alumni Association also recognizes the outstanding service of those who are not alumni. Honorary membership in the Alumni Association may be granted to any person who is not otherwise a member of the Alumni Association for unusual contribution to the Association or the University. It is also granted to anyone who has received an honorary degree from the University. Click here to submit a nomination for an Honorary Member.

Visit the Honorary Member Award Recipients Archive to see past recipients of the award.

2015 Honorary Membership Recipient


Phil Wood

Phil Wood has been the face of McMaster to generations of students. Soon after joining McMaster as an assistant professor of Chemical Engineering in 1983, his friendly, enthusiastic and accessible style along with his devotion to excellence in teaching made him a champion of the McMaster student experience. He was honoured by the McMaster community with numerous teaching awards and also received recognition at the provincial and national levels where he has received the Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA) Teaching Award and been named to the prestigious 3M National Teaching Fellowship.

Phil has also served as associate dean of the Faculty of Engineering and been the director of Engineering I, taking responsibility for the first-year engineering experience at McMaster.

In 2002, he became McMaster’s associate vice-president of student affairs and dean of students, a role he maintained until 2013. Throughout his decade-plus in the position, Phil was a tireless and enthusiastic supporter of student and alumni programming and well known for literally wearing his McMaster heart almost on his sleeve with his trademark McMaster-crested blazer. His work in student affairs was marked by a number of innovations including the development of the widely respected and emulated integrated mental health strategy.

The McMaster Alumni Association is pleased to bestow Honorary Membership upon Dr. Phil Wood.