ChemCon Awards

The following awards are given out annually at ChemCon.

You can view the most recent winners, or see winners from previous years.

To be considered for an award, please visit the conferences and events page for details on how to register for upcoming conferences.

Science Atlantic Communication Award

The Science Atlantic Communication Award is offered at each of the annual Science Atlantic-sponsored student conferences. The prize is awarded to the student who is best able to communicate a science topic to his or her peers. The award may be split into two prizes (one for an oral and one for a poster presentation) at the discretion of the judging committee.

The award consists of a letter of commendation, a cash prize and the opportunity to work collaboratively with the Atlantic Student Research Journal (ASJR) team to write and publish an article about the winner’s research.

Note on the ASJR editorial process: The Science Atlantic team will connect the winner with the Editor-in-Chief at the ASRJ. One of the ASRJ team members will work with the winner and direct them along the article creation process. Articles typically include an introduction of the researcher and their field of study, a description of the research and a discussion relating to the importance of the research. Once the article has been approved it will be added to the ASRJ queue for publication. Once added, it can take between two weeks and two months to be published, depending on the current rate of article production.


Each conference organizing committee determines the judging committee membership. Some committees involve students, some have a ballot vote of all conference attendees, and some are professors in the discipline.

The judging committee has the right to not give an award in any competition. If there are fewer than three students eligible to compete for this award at any conference, the award may not be disbursed. The decision of the judges is final.

Award (cash prize) sponsored by
Science Atlantic

Award (writing opportunity) sponsored by
the Atlantic Student Research Journal

The Atlantic Student Research Journal (ASJR) is a student-led initiative working to facilitate knowledge translation and develop the student-scientist network. Primarily, the ASRJ works with researchers and students to communicate their research, increase awareness and provide additional opportunity for student involvement. It also maintains a researcher directory, job board, and the Opportunity Centre. The ASRJ aims to inspire and support students and local researchers to develop the research ecosystem in Atlantic Canada.

Science Atlantic Undergraduate Research Award

Formerly called the NSERC Representatives’ Undergraduate Student Award, from 2004 to 2012.

This award is presented to the student (or students) giving the best research presentation(s) at an annual Science Atlantic conference.  A total of $400 is available for each conference.

The Award

The Award consists of a cash prize and a letter of commendation and can be split into oral and poster presentation prizes.


  • Abstract – Statement of problem, objectives, principal findings
  • Presentation – Clarity, visual aids, organization
  • Scientific merit – Experimental design, innovative approach, and interpretation of data
  • Overall knowledge and response to questions
  • Demonstrated potential to pursue graduate studies and research

Canadian Association of Theoretical Chemists  (CATC) Award

The Canadian Association of Theoretical Chemists  (CATC) Award in Theoretical Chemistry is presented each year at the three national undergraduate chemistry conferences for top student presentations related to computational and/or theoretical chemistry.


Judging for these awards is completed by chemistry professors from the host institution,  including a current CATC member whenever possible. The decision of the judges is final.

The Award

Prizes are awarded to the top oral and poster presenters, to a maximum of $500 total, as well as a letter of commendation. By accepting the prize, the winner(s) agree(s) to have his or her name, presentation title, and abstract provided to the donor.


For over 30 years, the Canadian Association of Theoretical Chemists (CATC) has represented the interests of both academic staff at Canadian universities and permanent staff in national laboratories whose focus is in computational and theoretical chemistry.

Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC) Awards

A number of divisions of the Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC) sponsors awards at ChemCon each year. Up to six divisions participate in any given year, providing prizes for the best undergraduate presentation (oral or poster) in the following areas:
  • Physical, Theoretical, or Computational Chemistry
  • Biological/Medicinal Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


Judging for these awards is completed by chemistry professors from the host institution, with assistance from visiting chemists.

The Award

Each CIC Award consists of a letter of commendation and a cash prize.


Through its three constituent societies—the Canadian Society for Chemistry (CSC), the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering (CSChE), and the Canadian Society for Chemical Technology (CSCT)—the Chemical Institute of Canada is committed to advancing the chemical sciences and engineering. Funding for each award is received from the chair of that division (CIC chair list). The chairs change every year for most subject divisions. If the list at the above link is not updated, the previous chair will most likely direct you to the current chair.

E. Gordon Young Award

The E. Gordon Young Award for Best Pedagogical Graduate Presentation (oral or poster) is given annually at the Science Atlantic Chemistry Conference (ChemCon). In the event that there is no suitable graduate student presentation in this area, the award will be given for a presentation made by an undergraduate student. The objectives of the award are to honour the memory of E. Gordon Young and to recognize an outstanding young chemist for his or her teaching and instructional abilities.


The Award will be made following a procedure determined by the Science Atlantic Chemistry Committee. In any year, if there is no suitable candidate, the judging committee has the right to not give an award. The decision of the judges is final.

The Award

The award is a $500 cash prize. By accepting the prize, the winner agrees to have his or her name, presentation title, and abstract provided to the donor.

About Dr. Young

Eldrid Gordon Young (1897-1976) was an internationally recognized scientist and scholar and the first Canadian to hold the title of biochemist. In 1924, Dr. Young moved to Atlantic Canada to lead the new Department of Biochemistry at Dalhousie University. In 1950, he stepped down to become the founding director of the Atlantic Regional Laboratory of the National Research Council, serving until his retirement in 1962. Dr. Young was recognized as an accomplished lecturer as well as an influential researcher. His professional honours include fellowships in the Royal Society of Canada, the Chemical Institute of Canada, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In addition to his presidency of CIC in 1959-60, Dr. Young sat on the board of numerous science associations and committees during his career. For more information, please see his biography.


The E. Gordon Young Award is sponsored by the CIC Chemical Education Fund through a bequest by Dr. Young.

Murray Brooker Award in Chemistry

First awarded in 2001

The Murray Brooker Award promotes undergraduate participation at chemistry conferences across Canada. The award recognizes presentations (both oral and poster) that focus on the student’s undergraduate educational experience in chemistry, chemical engineering, chemical technology or chemical technician studies. Presentations about the undergraduate experience made by graduate students in the first year of their program are also eligible for the award.


Judging for the award is done by a panel selected by the conference organizing committee. In any year, if there is no suitable candidate, the judging committee has the right to not give an award. The decision of the judges is final.

The Award

The award is a $500 cash prize. A total of six prizes are awarded annually at various regional undergraduate chemistry conferences across Canada. By accepting the prize, the winner agrees to have his or her name, home address, and educational institution provided to the Chemical Education Division of CIC.


This award is sponsored by the Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC). The CIC is a professional association of chemists, chemical engineers and chemical technologists who are employed in, or associated with industry, academia, government and other organizations across Canada and the world. The award is administered by the CIC Chemical Education Division. Conference organizers may contact Gale Thirlwall, Awards and Local Sections Manager of the CIC National Office for more information.

About Murray Brooker

Murray H. Brooker, FCIC, was a professor of chemistry at Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador (MUN) from 1972 until his death in 2000. Originally trained as a high school teacher, Dr. Brooker had a long term interest and involvement with science education and promotion, including visiting local high schools to give Chemistry Magic Shows and serving as chair of the Chemical Education Division for the Canadian Society for Chemistry from 1992-94.

Dr. Brooker was recognized for his teaching and research contributions through a wide variety of awards and honours, including the Union Carbide Award, Canada’s most prestigious award for chemical education, and the City of St. John’s Admiral’s Award for Tourism for his role as chair of the highly successful 1996 Canadian Chemical Conference, which attracted over 1000 national and international scientists. Dr. Brooker was an internationally recognized expert in the application of Raman spectroscopy to the study of molten salts and solutes in aqueous solutions with over 100 refereed publications and was appointed to three visiting professorships in Europe, at the Technical University of Denmark, the Université Bordeaux in France, and the University of Heidelberg in Germany.

In addition to the CIC’s Murray Brooker Award in Chemistry, a memorial scholarship, The Murray Brooker Scholarship for Excellence in Chemistry, was established at MUN in honour of his contributions to chemical education.