The recipient must be a full-time student and enrolled in good standing at Eastern Illinois University both at the time the award is conferred and when the award is paid. The recipient must have written a paper on evolution following the guidelines that were published for that year's Award. Papers must be the efforts of a single author and that individual can only submit one paper per award year. The recipient must have also tendered a letter of nomination from an EIU faculty member who supports the quality of the recipient's paper. The recipient must be present at the award ceremony to receive the award.