Academy, Section, and Junior Academy Awards

Click the buttons below to submit nominations or seconding letters of support and to see past winners.
Scroll below the buttons to read award descriptions.

Iowa Academy of Science Awards

Download the Distinguished Award and ESTA brochures, nominate candidates, and learn more about each award.

Iowa Science Teaching Section Awards

Iowa Junior Academy of Science Awards

The mission of the Iowa Academy of Science includes recognizing excellence in science research, science education and the public understanding of science. To that end the Academy has established the Distinguished Awards and the Excellence in Science Teaching Awards (ESTA). The Iowa Science Teaching Section (ISTS) of the Academy annually presents its Friend of Science Awards at the Fall Conference. The Iowa Junior Academy of Science presents the Outstanding Science Student Awards, the Most Promising Young Scientist, and the Inspiration Awards each year. Two high school students (9th - 11th grade) are selected to represent Iowa at the American Junior Academy of Science Annual Meeting - all expenses paid. Learn more about all of these awards by following links on this page.

Distinguished Awards

Nominations are accepted continuously.
The submission deadline each year is the first Friday in February.

The contributions of Iowa's Scientific Community have transformed our world view, protected our natural heritage and fostered succeeding generations of eager science researchers. In recognition of the best contributions of Iowans to science research, science education, and service to science, the Iowa Academy of Science established the Distinguished Science Awards Program in 1980.

Distinguished awardees are individuals with demonstrated and sustained excellence in science research, science education, or service to science.  Nominees will be evaluated by their record of extraordinary achievements, length of service, and impact on the state of Iowa.  

Nominators and nominees do not need to be members of the Iowa Academy of Science. Download the Distinguished Award Brochure to learn more about the awards and how to make a nomination.

There are four categories of Distinguished Awards:

  • Distinguished Fellow Award
    The highest award given by the Iowa Academy of Science, the Distinguished Fellow Award is intended to recognize exceptional scholarly activity to the scientific community at the national and international levels. Recipients receive a life time membership as a Distinguished Fellow of the Academy.

  • Distinguished Iowa Scientist Award
    This award is intended for individuals deserving recognition within his or her own area of science and who's accomplishments have gained state-wide acclaim.

  • Distinguished Iowa Science Teaching Award
    The Distinguished Iowa Science Teaching Award recognizes exceptional university and college faculty in science fields for their innovative science teaching.

  • Distinguished Service Award
    The Distinguished Service Award is given to organizations and individuals for exceptional service in the areas of science, technology or the application of science to public service.

  • Distinguished Iowa Citizen Scientist
    The Distinguished Citizen Scientist Award is presented to an individual who has made significant, sustained (for at least a decade) contributions to the understanding and advancement of science in Iowa through research activities conducted outside of the individual’s employment or academic position. These contributions will consist, at least in part, of the individual’s own data (e.g. quantitative, observational, specimens, imagery) that are compiled and made available to the scientific community, other citizen scientists and/or the interested general public. Collaborations between citizen scientists and professional scientists in a particular academic discipline are common and expected, and recipients of this award will have themselves conducted a substantial part of such collaborative research.

Excellence in Science Teaching Awards (ESTA)

Nominations are accepted continuously.
The submission deadline each year is January 31st.

The ESTA awards are presented at the Iowa Academy of Science Annual Meeting in April. There are seven categories:

  • Earth/Space Science/Environmental Science

  • Elementary Science*

  • General/Multiple Science (integrated science, interdisciplinary courses, multiple preps)

  • Life Science (biology, anatomy/physiology, life science)

  • Middle School/Junior High Science

  • Physical Science (physics, chemistry, and physical science)

  • Science Supervisory (District, private, AEA, museum, naturalist, etc.)

  • S.T.E.M. Science**

* Up to 2 awards may be presented annually for Elementary Science. One award may be presented in the other categories.

** Up to 3 awards may be presented, one each at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.

The winners of the ESTAs receive a plaque and a check for $200. The awards are presented at the IAS Annual Meeting in April. Learn more about the ESTAs and about making a nomination by downloading a brochure and following the directions below.

ISTS Awards

Iowa Science Teaching Section (ISTS) Friend of Science Awards

The Iowa Science Teaching Section annually presents its Friend of Science Awards. The awards are presented in three categories; Corporate, Individual, and Group.

Learn more about the Friend of Science Awards by clicking here.


IJAS Awards

Iowa Junior Academy of Science Awards

The Iowa Junior Academy of Science presents Outstanding Science Student Awards (OSSA) annually to one student in each participating IJAS member high school. Schools may submit the name of one student or if more than one student is submitted the Academy will select the winner.

The Most Promising Scientist award is presented annually at the IJAS Competition during the IAS Annual Meeting in April. The award includes a certificate. The award is presented to an IJAS student researcher.

The Inspiration Award is presented to two 10th grade students at the State Science and Technology Fair of Iowa. This award includes $50, a certificate, and a free 1 year membership in the Iowa Junior Academy of Science.