This grant supports student research in malacology and is named in honor of a leading malacologist, former President of the AMS, and mentor of innumerable students of malacology. Professor Melbourne “Mel” R. Carriker served as research director of 28 doctoral and master’s students and sat on the research committees of over another 150 graduate students. But his professional insight, malacological expertise, and good will touched so very many more. These grants will help carry on his legacy of dedication to future generations of malacologists and are only available to students. One or more grants will be awarded each year, subject to availability of funds; awards will typically not exceed $1,500.



  • Awardees are encouraged to present the results of their research at an annual meeting of the American Malacology Society.
  • The applicant must be a current member of the American Malacological Society. To join, please visit:
  • Institutional overhead is not permitted.
  • The research must focus on a topic in malacology (e.g., parasite studies should focus on the molluscan side of the interaction).

Recipients of awards are expected to submit the following to AMS's Student Awards and Education Committee within one year of the award date: (i) a report that describes how funds were used and (ii) a brief summary of the research and results to be published in the AMS Newsletter. Awardees may apply for additional awards only after these written reports have been received.


Applications must be received by AMS's Student Awards and Education Committee by March 31st and include the following components:

  1. A two-page summary of the proposed research, including a title, goals, methods, timetable, plans for publication, and a budget specifying the need for the grant. If necessary, the Literature Cited section may occupy a third page. Possession of any necessary permits should be noted.

  2. CV of applicant.

    All application materials must be sent via email to the chair of the Student Awards and Education Committee, Tom Duda. Applicants should attach a single PDF file containing the proposal and CV. Please title the filename with the applicant’s last name underscore “AMS” (e.g., “Jones_AMS.pdf”). If the proposal meets requirements of and so could also be considered for other AMS research awards, the applicant should indicate this in the body of the email (e.g., “I would like the proposal to be considered for the Carriker, Dundee, and Petit Award competitions.”).

    Proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

    • Novelty/importance of questions/hypotheses
    • Appropriateness and feasibility of research activities to address questions/hypotheses
    • Clarity of writing and completeness of proposal in terms of background materials/context, methods for collecting and analyzing data, and interpretation and implications of potential results
    • Proposed use of requested funds
    • Contribution to applicant's development as a malacologist
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