Nominations open for PM's prizes for science

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The federal government has opened nominations for Australia’s most prestigious science awards, the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science.

In calling for nominations, the innovation minister Michaelia Cash said the prizes celebrated the achievements and successes of Australian scientists, teachers and innovators in Australia and abroad.

“These awards recognise the extraordinary contribution that Australia's scientists and science teachers make to our nation, not only through their world-leading research but also as role models for young people considering careers in science, technology, engineering or mathematics,” said minister Cash.

Recipients of the prizes share in $750,000 across seven categories, including two that recognise excellence in science teaching in primary and secondary schools.

The eligibility guidelines for the Excellence in Science Teaching awards have been broadened this year to include mathematics and technology teachers.

Assistant minister for jobs, science and innovation, Zed Seselja, said it was so important to acknowledge the powers of inspiration that teachers can bring to their classrooms.

“Many people working in STEM fields acknowledge their science, maths or technology teachers as the reason for choosing their career paths.”

The $250,000 Prime Minister’s Prize for Science celebrates the contributions of Australian scientists in Australia and globally.

Last year’s recipient, Professor Jenny Graves AO, was recognised for her research into mammalian genome organisation and evolution, which will help to progress understanding of X and Y chromosomes, our immune system, and the human brain.

“As the first individual woman to receive the Prime Minister’s Prize for Science, Professor Graves is an outstanding role model for all the young women looking to pursue education or a career in STEM,” said minister Cash.

“These awards celebrate excellence and offer us an opportunity to bring the science, innovation and teaching community together to celebrate Australia’s scientific excellence.

“We look forward to receiving many high quality nominations this year.”