Winona Welch Award for Botanical Biodiversity Research

Description of the Award

Established by funds donated to the Academy by Winona Welch, Ph.D., this award is intended to support biodiversity research (e.g., surveys and systematics) of plants and their allies (e.g., algae and fungi). One award of $500.00 will be made each year for worthy proposals. Proposals are due February 15; announcement of the award will be made about March 1. Recipients must submit a final written report and make a presentation at the annual fall meeting of the Academy. All recipients are encouraged to submit a manuscript for publication to the Proceedings of the Indiana Academy of Science. For more details on this program, see below.


Any Academy member in good standing during the preceding year and at the time of the application who is either employed at a not-for-profit organization or enrolled in an accredited baccalaureate or graduate program may apply for this research grant. Awards will be made to the organization, not to an individual. Therefore, each application must have affixed the signature of the official within the applicant organization who has the authority to approve the request (e.g., College or University Research Officer, Academic Officer of Treasurer; School Superintendent).

Application Procedure

Submit six copies of a machine produced (10-12 point font, single space, 1" margins) application to the Chair of the Biodiversity and Natural Areas Committee, Indiana Academy of Science (see Each research proposal should be brief but complete and must include the following information arranged in the order given below:

  • A completed WINONA WELCH AWARD APPLICATION INFORMATION FORM. This page may be accessed here and the resulting copy may be used as a template and filled in with a word processor or printed and completed by hand in black ink and neat script. At least one copy of the grant application must have original signatures on this form while the others may be photocopies.
  • A COVER PAGE giving the name, mailing and e-mail addresses, and affiliation of the investigator and of the faculty sponsor where appropriate, together with a descriptive title for the proposed project. The cover page should also include the date of submission, the level of funding requested, and the name and the signature of the person authorized to make grant-related commitments on behalf of the applicant organization. Finally, also list the name and address of the institutional official to whom the check should be sent.
  • An ABSTRACT of approximately 300 words.
  • A NARRATIVE DESCRIPTION (limited to five pages) of the problem to be investigated, including a justification for the proposed study. Included in this section should be a statement of the research objectives, the scope of the problem, a subject review citing any published relevant literature, the approach to be used, the investigator's qualifications, and an estimate of when the results will be submitted for publication. This is a very important component of the proposal and will be carefully scrutinized by the reviewers.
  • The PROJECT BUDGET may include supplies and expenses such as travel, expendable items, plus wages and salaries for students or technicians. Only in justified cases will grants be made for the purchase of equipment. Applicants should note any efforts made to obtain research support from other sources.
  • If a request for renewal (new/expanded work on a project previously funded with a Welch Award), a PROGRESS REPORT that includes justification for the request as well as evidence of efforts to find other sources of support. Note that the present grant application may by abbreviated by reference to the original application, though please understand that the committee has a revolving membership and some of the members may not be familiar with the original project.

General Policies

Awards are issued as checks payable to the applicant institution and/or school and not to individual investigators.

Grants will not be approved that request or require support for attending meetings, publication costs, institutional administrative or indirect/overhead costs, stipends for salaried investigators, or computer time.

Grants will normally be made for investigative periods of one year beginning on the date of the award letter. A final report covering the scientific accomplishments is due within six months after the project closing date; the report should be sent to the Chair of the Biodiversity and Natural Areas Committee. A required form needed to guide this report is available here.A final budgetary accounting of grant funds by the applicant organization should be attached to this form and unexpended funds are to be returned to the Academy Treasurer.

Requests for extension, without additional funds, of the period of investigation for active projects supported by current grants may be considered by the Biodiversity and Natural Areas Committee. Any such request should have the signature of the applicant organization's authorized approved official. Requests for extension of time should be limited to six months or less, although requests for longer extensions may be considered in exceptional circumstances.

An oral presentation of research results at annual meetings of the Academy is required. Additionally, it is expected that publications resulting from projects supported by Indiana Academy of Science funds will acknowledge the Academy's support.

Evaluation Criteria

In reviewing proposals for possible support, the Biodiversity and Natural Areas Committee will consider the following criteria:

  • The information specified in the Application Procedure section must be provided.
  • The research proposal must be of scientific merit. It is the proposer's obligation to explain the significance of the proposed project for furthering understanding of the flora of the state.
  • The proposed investigator must be appropriately qualified by virtue of training or research experience.
  • The approach to be used must be clearly explained and appropriate to the problem. The proposal should include assurances that essential apparatus not requested is available.
  • Budget requests for travel should include estimates of actual expenses related specifically to the project. In general, use of personal vehicles will be reimbursed for fuel costs only, and necessary use of commercial or institutional vehicles will be reimbursed at the rate charged to the investigator. Requests for room and board costs for travel in transit are discouraged while those for residence at a field site are perfectly appropriate.

Application Deadline and Contact Information

Applications for the Winona Welch Award for Botanical Biodiversity Research must be received by the chair of the Biodiversity and Natural Areas Committee on or before February 15 of each year. Notification of awards and unsuccessful applications will normally be made by March 1 of each year.