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Arnold B. Arons Award for Excellence in Teaching, Advising, and Mentoring

This award was established by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution to honor the memory of Dr. Arnold B. Arons, long serving Trustee and Honorary Trustee of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Dr. Arons was renowned for his excellence in teaching physics at Stevens Institute, Amherst College, and the University of Washington. In recognition of his notable contributions to teaching, he was awarded the American Association of Physics Teachers Oersted Medal. He received the University of Washington's Distinguished Teaching Award in 1973.

During World War II, Dr. Arons was employed at WHOI. After the war, he collaborated with Henry Stommel in notable contributions to physical oceanography. During his tenure as Trustee and Honorary Trustee, Dr. Arons was instrumental in establishing and nurturing formal graduate education at WHOI, especially the MIT-WHOI Joint Program.

The Arnold B. Arons Award will be conferred periodically every two to five years as circumstances warrant to a WHOI Scientific Staff or Senior Technical Staff member who has demonstrated any or all of the following qualities during his/her participation in the education programs of the Institution.

  • Sustained excellence in teaching.
  • Sustained excellence in advising and/or mentoring.
  • Exceptional promise in teaching, advising, or mentoring during early career involvement in the Institution's education programs.

The Award will consist of a plaque engraved with the recipient's name and a cash award. The recipient's name will be engraved along with the date of receipt of the Award on a large plaque to be displayed in an appropriate manner in the Institution.


All members of the WHOI Scientific Staff and Senior Technical Staff (Research Specialists, Information System Specialists, Senior Engineers, Senior Research Specialists, Senior Information Systems Specialists and Principal Engineers), with the exception of the members of the Award Committee, are eligible for the award.

Nomination Procedure

Nominations may be submitted by any WHOI employee, MIT-WHOI Joint Program student, WHOI postdoctoral appointee, MIT-WHOI Joint Program or WHOI alumni/ae. The Award Committee requests that nominations consist of:

  1. A one or two page letter that addresses how the nominee's activities at WHOI have fulfilled one or more of the award's criteria - Sustained excellence in teaching, Sustained excellence in advising and/or mentoring, or Exceptional promise in teaching, advising, or mentoring during early career involvement in the Institution's education programs.
  2. A full C.V. of the nominee that includes education activities such as teaching, advising, mentoring, and committee memberships both at WHOI and elsewhere.
  3. Three letters of support for the nomination of one to two pages each. At least two of these letters should be from present or former WHOI employees, students, JP alumni/ae, or postdoctoral appointees.

> View a list of Award Recipients


Arnold B. Arons (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)