All medals, trophies, and certificates will be physically mailed to you.


Awarded to the Best Overall Junior & Senior Projects

Advanced opportunities are available for Prime Winners: Conference Speaking Invites, Internships, Research Opportunities, Media Interviews/Articles & Podcast Features


An all expenses paid trip for the top senior project to compete in Daejeon, Korea in October 2020 as a representative of Team North America.

Sponsored by

Winner shall be given distinction of "MAYAN Research Pioneer"

Will be deferred to October 2021 if KSEF 2020 is cancelled due to COVID-19.


An all expenses paid trip for the top junior project to compete in Barcelona, Spain in February 2021 as a representative of Team North America.

Sponsored by

Winner shall be given distinction of "NSERC Young Innovator"

Will be deferred to February 2022 if MEJIRF 2021 is cancelled due to COVID-19.


Awarded to the Top Senior Project in Each Category

Top Junior Project in Each Category will receive a Commemorative Certificate from InspoScience Canada


eXomoonAI Internship  

A remote, 1-2 month, contract-based, paid AI/App Dev. project, with compensation upon satisfactory completion. You will work on a hard, practical, industry problem, in an agile environment for one of eXomoonAI's client(s).


Team North America GENIUS Olympiad  

An all expenses paid trip to represent Team North America in the 2021 GENIUS Olympiad, an international high school environmental project competition held in Rochester, New York. You will showcase your project to fellow environmentalists and compete for awards.


Research Publication & ABRF Symposium Attendance  

A guaranteed publication of your manuscript in the peer-reviewed Int. Journal of Biotechnology and Biochemistry. You will also get an all expenses paid trip to attend the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities (ABRF) 2021 annual meeting held in Boston, Massachusetts.


Canadian National Physics Tournament  

An all expenses paid trip to compete in the Canadian Young Physicists’ Tournament (CaYPT) 2021 hosted by STEM Fellowship at the University of Toronto. The top team at CaYPT will be sponsored to represent Canada at the global level at the IYPT.

INSPO Merit Awards

Awarded to Top Overall Projects

Junior & Seniors each compete for a set of the following merit awards:

  1x Glass Trophy (accompanied with the prime award) with a $25,000 USD scholarship to the Rochester Institute of Technology

 5x Gold medals, signed certificates, and $20,000 USD entrance scholarships to the Rochester Institute of Technology

 10x Silver medals, signed certificates, and $18,000 USD entrance scholarships to the Rochester Institute of Technology

 15x Bronze medals, signed certificates, and $15,000 USD entrance scholarships to the Rochester Institute of Technology

All 200 qualified contestants for IRIC 2020 will receive signed certificates and $10,000 USD entrance scholarships to the Rochester Institute of Technology (the scholarship will superseded if a medal award is won).

Sponsored Awards

Awarded Specifically Based on Sponsor Criteria
= Canadian Contestants Only

         Award: 3 guaranteed placements in the paid Nokia Future Tech Summer Internship Canada Program for the 2021 session, which will take place over a seven-week period in July and August.
        The Nokia Future Tech Summer Internship Canada provides students with the opportunity to experience the high-tech world before leaving high school. Future Tech Interns work alongside Nokia engineering teams at our campus in Ottawa, Ontario and are given real, technical projects to complete over the summer. The internship is a paid position which allows students to gain valuable hands-on experience, while also providing insight to make an informed post-secondary education decision.
         Base Requirements:
    • The student is legally able to work in Canada (can live in US/MX).
    • The student will be able to travel to the Ottawa area for the duration of the Future Tech Internship program at personal expense.
    • The student has a safe place to live in the Ottawa area for the duration of the Future Tech Internship program at personal expense.
    • The student will be entering grades 10, 11, or 12 in the fall of 2021.
    • The student must be proficient in English
*Note that if events beyond Nokia's control cause the 2021 Future Tech program to be cancelled, then this award will be revoked.

         Criteria: The NOKIA Future Tech Summer Internship Canada Award will be awarded to a student whose project demonstrates exceptional technical depth, and a deep interest and passion for using technology to solve real, global problems. Single projects only.

        Award: A US, Canadian, or Mexican (depending on the winner's country) patent's filing & examination fees fully sponsored for a project, idea, design or specific process, deeming their invention patent-pending.
        Scotiabank is a leading bank in the Americas. Guided by their purpose: “for every future,” Scotiabank helps their customers, families and their communities achieve success through a broad range of advice, products and services, including personal and commercial banking, wealth management and private banking, corporate and investment banking, and capital markets. This Patent Grant is meant to inspire a realistic motivation in students to actually implement their prototypes while providing an effective next step to do so, hence empowering students to combine their scientific/technological ingeuity with entrepreneurship to spark development in their communities and further Scotiabank's mission.
        Criteria: The Scotiabank Patent Grant will be awarded to a student whose project most resembles a realistically usable product, and where its process of implementation would be greatly accelerated and have maximized competitive advantage by having a "patent-pending" status. According to the US, Canadian & Mexican Intellectual Property Offices, to be deemed eligible for a patent, your invention must meet three basic rules:
        1. The invention must show novelty (be the first in the world).
        2. It must show utility (be functional and operative).
        3. It must show inventive ingenuity and not be obvious to someone skilled in that area.

         Award: 4 full $995 program bursaries for Forum 2021 (includes transportation to and from Ottawa, meals, accommodation, and program fees).
        Forum is a bilingual, non-partisan, week-long program which occurs three times per year. During each session, young people aged 15 to 19 years from across Canada come together to deepen their understanding of the national decision-making process in Canada, share ideas & acquire tools for community engagement, and network & discuss social issues and policy with parliamentarians and youth from across the country.
        Criteria: The Forum for Young Canadians Award will be awarded to Canadian students in grades 9-12 who demonstrate a strong inclination to contribute to the future of their society through their projects, and would benefit from legislative processes and support. Single projects only.

         Award: A guaranteed placement in the Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science & Technology Summer Research Program to participate in a 6 week paid internship in 2021 (includes transportation to and from the University of Alberta, meals, and accommodation).
        The WISEST Summer Research Program (SRP) is unlike any other summer job that you could possibly imagine! For over 35 years, SRP has been giving students the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in university, and in the science, engineering, and technology fields. In this program, students get to work with top researchers and innovators, and become a part of the research team within the lab. Most of the research opportunities available are in laboratories located at the U of A campus, but some involve fieldwork. Research projects change every year.
        Criteria: The WISEST Externship Award will be awarded to a female Canadian student completing grade 11 in spring 2021 who demonstrates: a genuine interest in research in non-medical, non-pharmacy STEM field and has a desire to attend WISEST. Strong preference will be given to females from rural communities or females with FNMI heritage or a STEM interested individual identifying as a gender minority. The award will guarantee the selected student entrance into the 2021 program which is a 6 week paid internship (est value ~$3000). The student must agree to be a program ambassador post participation. The student must be able to travel to Alberta and participate fully in the 6-week program starting July 2021. Single projects only. (Note: Students who are not shortlisted or who do not receive the award are still welcome to apply to participate when SRP 2021 applications open February 1 2021.)

         Award: 2 scholarships in the amount of $1,500 for SHAD 2021.
        SHAD is a STEAM and entrepreneurship program for students in grades 10 & 11 that empowers them as change makers and prepares them to take on social and economical challenges. Participants spend 27 days in July living in residence at a Canadian host university while engaging in experiential learning through workshops, labs, and seminars.
         Criteria: The Shad Canada Award will be awarded to Canadian students in grade 9 or 10 who demonstrate: a desire and enthusiasm to attend Shad, a genuine interest in pursing their potential as a change maker and engagement in their community. Strong preference will be given to students who live in non-urban, rural or remote areas. To be eligible for the scholarship, the award winners must apply and gain acceptance to Shad during the 2021 application cycle. Single projects only.

         Award: 2 scholarships in the amount of $1000 for TKS 2020-2021.
        TKS trains kids to impact billions. The program was developed with CEOs and global leaders, modeled after curriculums from Stanford, Harvard, and MIT, and is designed to replicate the learning environment and culture of Silicon Valley. Students learn about emerging technologies in areas like artificial intelligence and nanotechnology that are changing the world. They work on problems that real companies (such as Microsoft & Google) are currently facing. Students develop foundational mindsets to help optimize themselves so they can make a significant impact on the world.
        Criteria: The TKS Scholarship will be awarded to ambitious students who demonstrate a genuine drive to have an impact on the world through research and innovation, along with an exceptional sense of curiosity expressed by the depth and scope of the problem(s) they are trying to solve through their project. To be eligible for the scholarship, the award winners must apply and gain acceptance to TKS 2020-2021.

         Award: A guaranteed scientific research publication (w/ mentorship) in the 2020 edition of the peer-reviewed STEM Fellowship Journal. Students will have the opportunity to win a $500 prize and an annual subscription to select Science Publishing Journals.
        STEM Fellowship is a Canadian charity that uses mentorship and experiential learning to equip the next generation of change-makers with indispensable skills in data science and scholarly writing. They present a new philosophy for student-driven experiential learning in STEM and provide their fellows with tools that will help them in the current STEM research and education ecosystem. STEM Fellowship is a virtual meeting place for advanced STEM learning. A place where students can collaborate to develop their ideas and discuss them with world-class experts, with opportunities for peer-review and scholarly publications of high school and university research.
        Criteria: The Research Publication in the 2020 STEM Fellowship Journal will be awarded to a project that demonstrates an innovative solution that will greatly impact the greater community. Students should demonstrate academic merit and ingenuity within the STEM field.

         Award: 2 cash awards from the Scientific Research Honor Society.
        Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society is the international honor society of science and engineering. One of the oldest and largest scientific organizations in the world, Sigma Xi has a distinguished history of service to science and society for more than one hundred and twenty five years. Scientists and engineers, whose research spans the disciplines of science and technology, comprise the membership of the Society. Sigma Xi chapters can be found at colleges and universities, government laboratories, and industry research centers around the world. More than 200 Nobel Prize winners have been members.
        Criteria: The Sigma Xi Research Award will be awarded to projects that best demonstrate interdisciplinary scientific ingenuity.

         Award: 2 inductions into the New York Academy of Sciences, becoming part of the World's Smartest Network® as a student member w/ full access to Professional Mentoring, Networking and Resume-Building Opportunities, Career Readiness and Soft Skills Training & Cutting Edge STEM Content.
        Since its founding in 1817, the Academy has welcomed science advocates, problem-solvers, and researchers from all disciplines and walks of life. Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Graham Bell, Charles Darwin, Margaret Mead…the history of the Academy is filled with thinkers and innovators.
        Criteria: The New York Academy of Sciences Award will be awarded to students that demonstrate an exemplary intellectual passion for their project with a genuine belief in its potential to grow and help the world.

         Award: An opportunity to share your project and personal story on the global Drop The STEM podcast.
         Drop The STEM showcases talented young scientists who with their undeniable enthusiasm for science, dedicated mindset, diligent work and outstanding achievements in the STEM fields are making a lasting impact today for a brighter tomorrow. The guests are ISEF, EUCYS, SIYSS, RSI, iGEM (& now IRIC!) Alumni.
        Criteria: The Drop The STEM People's Choice Award will be given to the project with the most public likes on our showcase platform.

         Award: An entry into Helyx's selective peer-reviewed journal for publishing, the opportunity to be a guest on Helyx's podacast, as well as an induction into the Helyx Student Research Society.
        The Helyx Initiative aims to provide bioinformatics education for all, specifically by:
• Guiding students that want to pursue their STEM interests further
• Creating research and STEM opportunities for high school students
• Providing widespread STEM curriculum
• Spreading STEM education through chapters
• Promoting STEM education through a multitude of different events and platforms
• Creating a welcoming community for students interested in STEM to connect

        Criteria: The Helyx Initiative Bioinformatics Award will be awarded to an exceptional biology research project that best utilizes informatics or computational tools.

         Award: An invitation to present your research at Simply Neuroscience's International Simply Neurocon conference in August 2020, and be featured on an episode of SN’s podcast: The Synapse.
        Simply Neuroscience is an international team of leaders and changemakers with a shared passion for neuroscience, psychology, and their multifaceted applications in other fields within STEM and the humanities. From creating free study resources and lesson plans to help students learn about neuroscience to making blog/social media posts, spearheading initiatives to promote mental health awareness, providing a supportive community of students with interests in the brain, and so much more, SN helps students get involved through a variety of avenues.
        Criteria: The Simply Neuroscience Award will be awarded to a research project that best demonstrates exploration and innovation in the fields of neuroscience or psychology.

         Award: A cash award from the first scientific society in the world dedicated exclusively to virology.
        The American Society for Virology Archive serves both to collect and preserve official legal and historical material directly relevant to the establishment and maintenance of the Society, and to store and make available to the public material of general historical interest in the discipline of virology.
        Criteria: The American Society of Virology Award will be awarded to an outstanding project concerning viruses and virus-like agents, including (but not limited to) their taxonomy, disease-producing properties, cultivation and genetics.

  Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon the best project that utilizes or theorizes the use of nanoscience and nanotechnology to solve a pressing real-world problem.

  Mars Institute Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon the best project that demonstrates significant achievement and potential for advancing planetary science and exploration.

  Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon a project that demonstrates a strong multidisciplinary focus in one or more of the following areas: microbiology, genetics, molecular (cell) biology, structural biology, biochemistry or synthetic systems biology.

  Science Media Centre of Canada Award  by Penny Park  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon an outstanding project done by a female scientist that embodies an incisive study with thorough, well-informed and objective practices.

  Western University Engineering Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon a project that demonstrates a genuine interest in learning about industry engineering practices in-depth.

  Society of Economic Paleontologists, Mineralogists and Sedimentary Geology Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon the best physical, historical or environmental project in the geological sciences.

  Society for Canadian Women in Science & Technology Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon an exemplary project done by a young woman showcasing the greatest curiosity, ingenuity, and innovation in design.

  Canadian Council on Geomatics - Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon the project that best utilizes geomatics engineering or geospatial science.

  Birds Canada Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon the best project in avian or ecosystem science which contributes to conservation solutions for wild birds.

  Evidence for Democracy Award  
         Criteria: Distinction to be bestowed upon an outstanding project undertaken by a student utilizing evidence-based & data driven methods to make an impact in the public sector.

All Sponsored Awards will include Social Media Mentions & Features from the Sponsor.