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About the Scholarship

The Nelson Institute Center for Climatic Research (CCR) held its fifth annual Reid Bryson Scholarship competition on March 6, 2015, as part of the UW-Madison Climate Change Symposium. There were 21 student applicants from a diverse set of departments and centers across campus, including CCR, the Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment (SAGE), the Space Science and Engineering Center (SSEC), the Nelson Institute, and the Departments of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Forest and Wildlife Ecology, Geography, Engineering, and Agronomy. This rich variety captures the interdisciplinary nature of Professor Reid Bryson’s studies and will inspire other UW students.

2015 Reid Bryson Scholarship Competition Results

Applicants for the Reid Bryson Scholarship must either be a registered undergraduate or graduate student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, from any department or center. The research should either address (1) fundamental climatic and meteorological processes or (2) environmental issues at the interface of climate, people, and the environment. Professor Bryson's research was highly interdisciplinary, so students from across the sciences and humanities are encouraged to apply. We will post updated information on next year’s Bryson scholarship in early 2016.

Professor Reid Bryson (1920-2008) was the founder of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Department of Meteorology and Center for Climatic Research and was the first director of the Institute for Environmental Studies (now the Nelson Institute). Dr. Bryson was one of the pioneers of modern climatology and among the first to explore the influence of climate on humans and human culture. He gained fame for his studies of past and future climate, the relationships between climate and the biosphere, and the interaction of climate and human societies. A polymath, Bryson's scholarly interests ranged from studies of archaeology and geography to geology and limnology, and he tied them together through an abiding interest in weather and climate.

The Reid Bryson Scholarship is an Ideas to Excellence event. Ideas to Excellence, held for a month each spring, showcases the academic and creative work of our undergraduate students. Multiple venues will house events - including exhibitions, poster sessions, presentations and performances - that celebrate excellence in student work. For more information: