The Charles W. Reimer Scholarship was established in 2009 through gifts from the participants in the North American Diatom Symposium and offers an annual award of $500.

Charles Reimer

Charles Reimer was born in Indianapolis on May 14, 1923. In middle school he became interested in natural sciences, particularly botany. He attended Butler University from 1940-43. During World War II he was trained as an interpreter at the University of Nebraska and sent to the front lines in Normandy and Alsace-Lorraine. While on a patrol, he was severely wounded and held in captivity until the end of the war. After a several-month recovery in U.S. hospitals, Reimer returned to Butler University and then attended graduate school at Michigan State University where he received his Ph.D. in Botany. Dr. Reimer went on to a 56-year tenure at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia as the Curator of the Diatom Herbarium.

In 1963, Dr. Reimer began teaching the summer diatom course in Iowa. He considerably expanded and formalized what had been called the “Diatom Clinic” and established an intensive five-week diatom course. Under his direction, the course served as a forum for upper level undergraduates, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and academic researchers to focus on biology, ecology, and taxonomy of the diatoms. Students were immersed in the field and laboratory study of freshwater diatoms including techniques in collection, preparation, curation, and identification of diatom samples and the study of environmental factors affecting growth, distribution, and taxonomic characters. During the years that Dr. Reimer taught the course, more than 150 students and researchers took part, many of whom would go on to make important contributions to the field.

Application Process

The Charles W. Reimer Scholarship is available annually to support a student in the Ecology and Systematics of Diatoms class at Iowa Lakeside Laboratory. Please prepare a 1-2 page essay describing your motivation and qualifications for taking the diatoms course, and e-mail this with your CV to the Director.The deadline is April 1. The recipient will be chosen by the Ecology and Systematics of Diatoms course instructors.