Undergraduate Scholarships and Awards

You may apply on your own for these scholarships or be nominated by a Mathematics teacher or an advisor.

Undergraduate scholarships

Application Process:  By simply completing one application (the OneApp), you will be considered for ISU Office of Student Financial Aid scholarships, LAS College scholarships, and Mathematics department scholarships. There are many scholarships that consider academic achievement, financial need, major, career interest and other factors. Just remember — you only need to complete the OneApp to be considered for any of these scholarships.   If you will have a department scholarship opportunity recommended to you, you still must apply to within the OneApp system in order to be considered for department scholarships.

The deadline for all Mathematics scholarship applications is March 1 each year.


James L. Cornette Scholarship or Award

James L. Cornette received his doctorate from the University of Texas in 1962, studying under the famous R. L. Moore. He joined the Iowa State faculty soon after, and was promoted to University Professor in 1998. Dr. Cornette began his career as a topologist, and later began applying mathematical methods to problems in the life sciences. He retired in 2000, but has remained an active member of the Mathematics Department.

This recognition can take the form of a scholarship or, for a graduating student, a cash award.  Applicants should be undergraduate Mathematics majors with achievements in the application of mathematics to an area of science.

To apply, submit an application using OneApp.  You will also be asked to provide the name of a faculty member who will submit a letter of nomination on your behalf.

Marian Elizabeth Daniells Scholarship Fund for Mathematics

Marian Daniells obtained her A.B. Degree from both Kalamazoo College and the University of Chicago in 1908. She came to Iowa State to complete her M.S. degree in 1919, and remained on the Mathematics faculty until her death in 1975. Marian devoted most of her life to the ISU Mathematics Department and the University in general. She was known as a “good old-fashioned school marm.” Her classes were well disciplined.  During her later years she was nearly blind, but still made herself available to help students as a tutor.  When Marian Daniells died at the age of 87, she left her small estate to her brother with the stipulation that when he passed away, it was to go to the Iowa State Mathematics Department to endow scholarships. Her brother invested the money well and interest on these funds will provide scholarships to many excellent and deserving Mathematics majors in the years to come.

To apply, submit an application using OneApp.  You will also be asked to provide the names of one or two faculty members who will submit a letter of nomination on your behalf.

Herta & H.T. David Scholarship in Mathematics

Professor H.T. David was Professor of Statistics, Professor of Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering, and University Professor at ISU. He received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard (’47), his M.A. from Columbia (’48), and his Ph.D. from Chicago (’60). He came to ISU in 1956 and retired in 1998.  He and his mother, Herta, believed that mathematics was undervalued and underappreciated on this campus and elsewhere.

Therefore, Herta & H.T. David Scholarships are awarded to Mathematics majors who face unique challenges to obtaining higher education, such as financial need or a challenging family background. Eligibility criteria also include being an enrolled sophomore, junior or senior with a minimum 2.5 GPA.

To apply, submit an application using OneApp.  Include a short statement addressing the unique challenges that you face or have faced to obtain your educational objectives.

Diedrichsen Scholarship in Mathematics

Ellen and Steven Diedrichsen both graduated from Iowa State University.  They appreciate the opportunities afforded to them through their undergraduate and graduate degree programs along with leadership development opportunities they received through the residence hall system. Ellen earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and has had a rewarding and successful career as an actuary (Fellow in Society of Actuaries)  and as a mathematics teacher. Their intent is to assist recipients of this scholarship to apply their passion and interest in mathematics and/or actuarial science to an equally rewarding career. The recipient will be a Mathematics major, preferably with an interest in actuarial science. Scholarship will be for one year and is renewable.

To apply, submit an application using OneApp.

Fred Wright Mathematics Endowed Scholarship

Fred Wright was a professor at Iowa State for over fifty years and wanted to leave his legacy with the Mathematics Department by endowing a scholarship in his name.  He was born in Aurora, Illinois. In the 1940’s he served in the Marines, and after service went on to earn his M.S. and Ph.D degrees in Mathematics from Northwestern University.  Dr. Wright joined the Iowa State Mathematics faculty in 1953 and was promoted to Professor in 1964. Professor Wright loved teaching and working with students.  He was dedicated to doing his best to help students learn Mathematics and to helping each student reach his or her goals. He retired in 2006 and passed away in 2016 at the age of 93.

Recipients are chosen from undergraduate Mathematics majors with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Repeat awards are possible.

To apply, submit an application using OneApp.

Honors and awards

All current awards are selected by the Mathematics Department Undergraduate Committee. Applications are neither required nor accepted.

Dio Lewis Holl Awards for Outstanding Senior and Outstanding Junior

These awards honor the memory of Dio L. Holl, who taught in the Mathematics Department of Iowa State College from 1925 until his death in 1954. Dr. Holl was professor and head of the department for nine years.

He was born in Canton, Ohio in 1895. He received an A.B. degree from Manchester College (’17), an A.M. from Ohio State University (’20), and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago (’25). He served in World War I during 1918-1919. From 1923 until 1925, Dr. Holl taught at Ohio Wesleyan University. Dr. Holl was a member of several professional and community groups and was recognized as a powerful teacher both in the graduate and the undergraduate areas.  Dr. Holl’s family, as well as other friends, have honored him by contributed substantially to the award fund.

The Dio L. Holl award is given to one outstanding senior and one outstanding junior during the current academic year.  Recipients are chosen based on grade point average and excellence in math courses. No applications are accepted or required.

Gertrude Herr Adamson Award

The award is given in honor of Gertrude Herr Adamson, an associate professor of Mathematics at Iowa State.  Gertrude Herr was born in Kansas in 1884.  She was a 1907 graduate of Iowa State.  From 1907 to 1913, Miss Herr taught high school mathematics in Iowa.  Later she attended the University of Wisconsin, the University of Colorado, Chicago University and Iowa State. She was appointed to the Mathematics staff at Iowa State in 1913 where she taught for 39 years.  In 1917, Iowa State granted her the Master of Science degree.  She was one of the first counselors to science women and served in that capacity for 21 years.  After organizing the Science Women’s Club, she served as its faculty advisor.  She left the University faculty in 1952 when she married A. G. Adamson, a member of her 1907 graduating class.  She passed away in 1964.

Mrs. Adamson’s memory is being honored by friends who have contributed to the Gertrude Ann Herr Adamson Award fund.  The award recognizes students who have shown ingenuity in mathematics.

Recipients are chosen based on participation in Mathematics Contests and Problem of the Week. No nominations are accepted or required.

Alan J. Heckenbach Award

Born in Chicago in 1933, Dr. Alan Heckenbach obtained degrees in Mathematics at Northwestern University and the University of Missouri. He taught at Lake Forest College (1955-61) and at Iowa State University (1972-96).  Dr. Heckenbach was dedicated to the mathematical development of students.  As an academic advisor, he challenged his advisees to take solid, substantive courses. As a teacher, he displayed exceptional enthusiasm for mathematics and demanded that his students excel in both the fundamentals and the underlying concepts of the subject. He was particularly challenging to the more gifted students, pushing them to realize their full potential. A quote from a former student: “If I return to academia to teach after receiving a doctorate in math or physics, I hope to pass on what Dr. Heckenbach has taught me, to emulate his concern for students, and to share his passion for mathematics, as a partial repayment for the gift of his influence”.  It is hoped that the recipient will appreciate some of Dr. Heckenbach’s passion for giving and emulate his example professionally.

The Alan J. Heckenbach Award is presented annually to an outstanding senior Mathematics major in secondary education.

Recipients are chosen based on recommendations from the faculty in Mathematics and Curriculum and Instruction. No applications are accepted or required.