The Dies Natalis, Utrecht University's Anniversary Day, is celebrated on 26 March: the day in 1636 when the Illustrious School became an academic university.
The Anniversary Day is celebrated in the Dom Church. This annual ceremony always includes the Anniversary Address, the awarding of honorary doctorates, and has featured the awarding of the Teachers Awards since 1995 and the Young Teacher Talent Award since 2000. Each year is devoted to a specific subject, which, for the last few years, has been one of the strategic themes of Utrecht University.
The Anniversary Address is the keynote speech on Anniversary Day. It explores the Anniversary Day theme and is given by a professor from Utrecht University.
Honorary doctorates are the university's way of expressing its appreciation for individuals and their work. Honorary doctors receive a certificate from the University together with a short gown (cappa) in the red and white colours of Utrecht. He or she is then authorised to use the title Doctor honoris causa
Each year, the Executive Board presents two prestigious awards for lecturers: the Teachers Award and the Young Teacher Talent Award.
The cortège of professors, emeritus professors and special guests making their way from the University Hall to the ceremony in the Dom Church always a special sight.