Scholarships, awards and fellowships offered through the Department of Biochemistry help support undergraduate and graduate student researchers. Many are made by possible through generous donations by alumni and friends of the department.
Undergraduate awards are given to deserving students to assist with living or research expenses. Graduate awards include research fellowships. The department also offers travel awards to graduate students and postdoctoral researchers.
Undergraduate Student Awards
The Department of Biochemistry is proud to offer its undergraduate biochemistry majors several award and funding opportunities. Read about our different programs and awards below. Students who are eligible may apply for all departmental scholarships but will only be awarded one per academic year. Some opportunities in biochemistry and many opportunities across campus are available through the Wisconsin Scholarship Hub (WiSH). You can submit some biochemistry award applications through WiSH. Students who are awarded other UW–Madison scholarships can be supplemented by one of our Biochemistry Scholarships or Awards.
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Biochemistry Undergraduate Summer Research Award
This award aids biochemistry undergraduates who are early in their academic careers in gaining focused, full-time research experience (equivalent of 30-40 hours per week over eight weeks) during the summer following receipt of the award. The award amount is $4,000.
- Applicant must be a declared biochemistry major
- Applicant must be an enrolled undergraduate during the fall semester following the award
- Applicant must submit as part of their award application a quality research proposal, communicate originality and intellectual significance of research, and possess excellent academic achievements
- Students may not accept other research funding or awards for use during the summer in which they will receive the Biochemistry Undergraduate Summer Research Award. For example, if a student receives a Hilldale Award, their work under the Hilldale Award must be performed during the academic year so that the Biochemistry Undergraduate Summer Research Award can be applied during the summer and for the student’s summer research project.
- If a student chooses to accept a non-biochemistry summer award, they may not move their biochemistry award to a different term/semester but instead must choose one award and decline the other.
Application: Students can apply for this award at WiSH at the end of each calendar year. Applications typically open in December and close in mid- to late-January. Award recipients are typically notified in late March. The application is listed as the “Biochemistry Undergraduate Summer Research Award.” A complete application includes the following:
- Research/project proposal: No more than five pages, double-spaced. At least one-inch margins and at least 11-point font. Abstract and references are included in this page limit. Proposals should contain the following sections: Abstract (200 words or less, may be single-spaced), Background and Significance (i.e., a literature), Methods (plans for data collection and analysis), and References (may be single-spaced).
- Personal statement: One-page summary of applicant’s personal interests, career goals, and previous lab experience.
- Letter of recommendation from the faculty member supervising the student applicant’s project: Letters must be requested and submitted via the WiSH website. Letters must outline the significance of the project and the number of weeks or hours per week the student will be engaging in research.
The Biochemistry Undergraduate Summer Research Awards are generously supported by the Gilboe Family Memorial Scholarship Fund, the E.W. Hopkins Fund, the Carl Krieger Memorial Scholarship Fund, the Floyd C. McIntire Biochemistry Award Fund, the Henry A. Lardy Undergraduate Research Fund, the Marc A.T. Muskavitch Undergraduate Research Fund, the Jack Gorski Fund, the Ezra L. Totton Scholarship in Biochemistry, and by Eric Bey and Amanda Boley.
Mary Shine Peterson Undergraduate Award
This prestigious undergraduate award recognizes UW–Madison Department of Biochemistry undergraduate students with demonstrated excellence in and commitment to research by providing financial assistance to foster and support their experience in biochemistry-related activities during the summer session before their final year and/or during their final year of undergraduate education. Relevant activities for support include (1) conducting faculty-advised research in a biochemistry-oriented laboratory; (2) traveling to participate in a global health program, and/or traveling to a scientific meeting to present a research-oriented poster or paper.
Mary Shine Peterson awardees are chosen annually depending on the pool of undergraduate applicants and the availability of award funds. The award amount is up to $5,000.
- Applicant must be a declared biochemistry major
- Applicant must intend to graduate in the academic year following the year in which they submit their application
- Applicant must have a cumulative GPA exceeding or equal to 3.5 at the end of the fall semester before they apply
- Applicant must have completed at least one biochemistry course at the 500-level or higher
- Note: Preference will be given to applicants with at least one year of laboratory research experience
- Note: Prior to graduation, Mary Shine Peterson Award recipients are required to submit a written report (500 to 1,000 words) that is also approved by the student’s research or program supervisor. The report must describe how the Mary Shine Peterson Award enhanced and fostered the student’s training in the field of biochemistry. The report filing deadline is the last day of classes in which the student is enrolled at UW–Madison.
Application: Students can apply for this award at WiSH at the end of each calendar year. Applications typically open in December and close in mid- to late-January. Award recipients are typically notified in March. A complete application includes the following:
- List of lab experience and notable extracurricular activities, including participation in international programs. Dates should accompany each item in the list.
- Personal statement describing the applicant’s professional career plans, the activity or research project the award is intended to support, and how the award would enhance and advance the applicant’s research education in biochemistry and their scientific career. The personal statement is limited to one page, 11-point type or larger, 0.8 inch margins.
- Curriculum vitae or resume.
- Grade transcripts from all college coursework completed outside UW–Madison. (A UW–Madison transcript will be automatically generated on the application site.)
- Two letters of recommendation from faculty. For applicants who are proposing to conduct research on the UW–Madison campus, one of these letters must be from the faculty member in whose lab research will be performed.
- Electronic copies of any co-authored manuscripts.
University of Wisconsin–Madison Undergraduate Academic Awards
- List of campus-wide awards
- Hilldale Undergraduate/Faculty Research Fellowship: Hilldale Fellowships provide support for collaborative research between undergraduate students and faculty or instructional academic staff members. Fellowships provide a grant of $3,000 to students and $1,000 to the faculty/staff supervisor to help defray the costs of research. Students must have at least junior standing at the time of application.
- Holstrom Environmental Research Fellowship: Holstrom Fellowships are awarded for collaborative research on environmental issues between undergraduate students and faculty or instructional academic staff members. Scholarships provide a grant of $3,000 to the student and $1,000 to the faculty/staff supervisor to help defray the costs of research. Students must have at least junior standing at the time of application.
- Sophomore Research Fellowship: Funded by grants from the Brittingham Fund and the Kemper K. Knapp Bequest, the Sophomore Research Fellowships support undergraduate research done in collaboration with UW–Madison faculty or research/instructional academic staff. The student researcher receives $2,500 and their faculty/staff research supervisor receives $500 to help offset research costs.
- Jack Gorski Scholarship: Awarded to freshmen and sophomores in CALS who are majoring in Biochemistry, Dairy Science, or Animal Science, applicants must be eligible for work-study. Preference is given to students who graduated from high schools with less than 1,000 students.
- Alpha Helix Scholarship: The Alpha Helix Scholarship was established by friends of Professor Perry A. Frey and his wife Carolyn for undergraduate studies in CALS. Awarded to CALS undergraduate students enrolled in Biochemistry, Microbiology, Genetics or Nutritional Sciences, distribution of this scholarship is based on merit and financial need.
Graduate Student Awards
The Department of Biochemistry is proud to offer its graduate students several award and funding opportunities. Read about our different programs and awards below.
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Denton Award for Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring
This award honors biochemistry graduate students who consistently provide quality guidance and scientific training in mentoring undergraduate students in their research efforts and show evidence of quality, commitment, and innovation in teaching. This award is made possible through the generosity of Arnold E. and Catherine M. Denton.
Kimberly Dickson – 2004
Michael D. Hobbs – 2004
Dipali G. Sashital – 2005
David W. Staple – 2005
Erik S. Underbakke – 2006
Jackie Ann Fretz – 2006
Ian A. Lewis – 2007
Edward L. Huttlin – 2007
Clayton D. Carlson – 2008
Michael P. Killoran – 2008
Matthew F. Copeland – 2011
Brittany N. Albaugh – 2011
Hannah Tuson – 2012
Ben Knowles – 2012
Basudeb Bhattacharyya – 2013
Rachel Kubiak – 2013
Angela Gruber – 2014
Kristen Dittenhaufer-Reed – 2014
Brendan Floyd – 2015
Tucker Carrocci – 2015
Rebecca Phillips – 2016
Ian Windsor – 2016
Michael Kelliher – 2017
Keren Turton – 2017
Kasia Dubiel – 2018
Sarah Hansen – 2018
Nathan Thomas – 2019
Evan Glasgow – 2019
Megan Dowdle – 2020
Harriet Saunders – 2020
Dana Dahhan – 2021
Dylan Plaskon – 2021
Aryel Clarke – 2022
Matthew Blackburn – 2022
Bianca Chavez – 2023
Sigrid Leirmo Memorial Award in Biochemistry
This award recognizes graduate or postdoctoral students who exemplify the spirit of Sigrid Leirmo. Leirmo received her Ph.D. from the Department of Biochemistry in 1989. She was widely acknowledged among her fellow students and colleagues as a promising researcher and enthusiastic friend and mentor.
Andrew P. Hinck – 1993
Stephen DelCardayre´ – 1994
Ronda M. Allen – 1995
Laura C. McCary – 1996
John L. Mimikakis – 1997
Jenifer A. Miskowski – 1998
Lori A. Plum – 1999
Kevin P. Rice – 2000
Jasen E. Gestwicki – 2001
Kevin H. Mitchell – 2002
Michelle Soltero – 2003
David Bernstein – 2004
Liana B. Lamont – 2005
Christian D. Adams – 2006
Brad A. Hook – 2006
Christopher L. Warren – 2007
Anna K. Fuezery – 2008
Michael A. Goren – 2011
Kelly Hoadley – 2012
Amber Schuh – 2013
Emily Ruff – 2014
Raashi Sreenivasan – 2015
Kim Haupt – 2016
Tyler Stanage – 2017
Kate Henderson – 2018
Andrew Voter – 2019
Josephine Mitchell – 2020
Tina Lynch – 2021
Elizabeth Larson – 2022
Thomas Anderson – 2023
Graduate Student Fellowships
In the fall of every year, biochemistry solicits nominations for biochemistry-funded graduate student fellowships. The fellowships typically fund a student’s stipend, fringe expenses, and tuition expenses for the following fiscal year. The fellowships are intended for Integrated Program in Biochemistry (IPiB) graduate students who are 1) past their first year of graduate study and 2) in labs of faculty who have a primary departmental home in the Department of Biochemistry. Students are not eligible if they have either 1) received three years of departmental support, or 2) exceeded five years of graduate study at the time of application. A student’s nomination is ranked by the fellowship committee with a heavy emphasis on research accomplishment. GPA is a secondary criterion but is given some weight in overall scoring.
Nominations require the following:
- Letter of recommendation by major professor
- Research summary (1 page)
- Reprints of papers published, including abstracts of meeting presentations
- Copy of a poster describing the student’s research (either a poster displayed at the most recent departmental poster session, or one presented or to be presented at a national meeting)
- GPA at the University of Wisconsin–Madison
- Year in program
- Expected degree date from UW–Madison
Postdoctoral Researcher Awards
Each year, The Department of Biochemistry is proud to offer its postdoctoral researcher award, the Boyer Award for Postdoctoral Excellence in Biochemistry, which highlights excellence in research. The award is made possible by Professor Paul D. Boyer, who earned a Ph.D. (1943) from the department. Awardees share about their research at the annual Paul D. Boyer Lecture.
The Department of Biochemistry offers travel awards to IPiB graduate students assigned to a biochemistry department faculty member’s lab and to postdocs in any biochemistry department faculty member’s lab. Students in other programs, students in other departments, staff, and scientists are not eligible. Applicants must be giving an oral presentation or be first author on a poster being displayed.
Individuals may only receive one award per academic year (September 1 thru August 31). The maximum annual award is $500 for domestic travel (includes Canada and Mexico) and $700 for international travel.
If you receive a travel allowance through a fellowship or grant, use funds from this source first. Students on training grants should request travel funds first from the grant. Biochemistry may then supplement such awards up to the $500 or $700 limit. Postdoctoral fellows with travel allowances are not eligible. A copy of the poster or talk abstract, with authors listed, must accompany the application.
Additional travel funding is available through the Graduate School’s Student Research Grants Competition (formerly known as the Vilas Travel Awards). The SRGC program has two award categories — the Conference Presentation Funds and the Research Travel Awards — each with multiple award levels. To encourage people to apply for these awards, the biochemistry travel awards will not be affected by receipt of an SRGC Award as long as the total expense of the trip is not exceeded. The same policy applies to awards from national organizations and/or meeting organizers.