The Rochester Academy of Science, Inc., is an organization which has been promoting interest in the natural sciences since 1881, with special focus on the Western New York State region.
The Academy is an affiliate of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
The sole requirement for membership in the Academy is an interest in science. Applicants are elected to membership by members present at regular meetings. Membership dues are minimal for the Academy, and are listed in the membership application. Each Section also sets dues to cover Section activities and newsletters.
We sincerely hope that you will find in the Academy the opportunities you desire for improving your personal knowledge of natural history, and that you will join your fellow members in increasing such knowledge in the community. The officers of the Academy and the Section chairmen will welcome your suggestions for a more effective Academy.
Forms for joining the Academy can be found by clicking the button below.
The various Sections of the Academy pursue specialized interests with informative programs and field trips, plus social events.
Periodically, the Academy presents free public lectures. The Larry J. King Memorial Lecture at the Fall Scientific Paper Session and the Spring Lecture feature professionals who share their expertise in topics related to natural history.
Scientific Paper Session
The Academy sponsors a Fall Scientific Paper Session for members and non-members who present their research on topics of local natural history or other academic investigations. The event features the L. J. King Memorial Lecture and is held at a Rochester area college each year.
Rochester Mineralogical Symposium
The Academy participates in the Rochester Mineralogical Symposium, a four day event held each April. At this four-day conference, internationally renowned mineralogists present their research findings and share tales of their fieldwork.
The Academy exchanges its Proceedings with several hundred academies and scientific organizations throughout the world. The exchange receipts constitute a very valuable and unusual resource, which, along with the R.A.S. Library, is deposited on permanent loan with the Library of the University of Rochester. The University extends to the Academy membership use of some of its own academic facilities for study purposes. Library cards are issued to members who apply for them and who show their R.A.S. membership cards as proof of eligibility.
The Academy awards small grants to undergraduate college students involved in science research to promote interest in science among young people. Letters encouraging grant applications are sent to science departments of western New York colleges in the fall semester. Information on grants may be requested from the R.A.S. Grant Committee Chairperson.
The Academy takes notice of its outstanding members and friends, and periodically bestows appropriate honors.
The Rochester Academy of Science has three categories of funds: the General Fund, the Endowment Fundsand the Expendable Funds.
The General Fund receives membership dues, monthly interest from the Life Fund (endowment) and the Memorial Fund (endowment). Expenses from the General Fund are outlined in the budget below.
General Fund Budget Categories
Section & Board Meetings: Room rental
Bulletin: printing, mailing, labor
Events: Spring Lecture & Fall Scientific Paper Session
General Office Expenses
Memberships (in other organizations)
The Endowment Funds are invested in Salomon Smith Barney bond funds and in Pittsford Federal Credit Union certificates of deposit. The Endowment funds are not spent but generate interest, which is entered as income into the three Expendable Funds. There are six Endowment Funds:
This fund was established with an initial gift from H.L. Fairchild and later increased with a bequest by David Jensen. Additional funds have been added from the General Fund and from individual gifts. As mandated by the Constitution, Ch. IX Part 5, the income from this fund is deposited in the Publications Fund.
This fund contains the membership dues paid by people who joined the Academy at the Life Membership level. This fund generates interest that is deposited in the General Fund.
This fund was established with a bequest from Katherine Jensen and has been increased with individual donations to the Academy. Interest from this fund is deposited in the Grants Fund.
This fund was established in 1988 with a bequest from Robert L. Roudabush and increased with funds from the General Fund. Interest from the Speakers Fund is deposited in the Lecture Fund.
Grace Murray Fund
This fund was established in 1991, originally as the "Grace Murray Memorial Fund," in memory of Grace Murray who was active in developing and managing the undergraduate science student research grant awards. This fund was established with a gift from her nephews, Murray and Ed Lynd. Interest from this fund is deposited in the Grants Fund. An auxiliary fund, the "T.F. and A.A. Murray Fund" was established with a gift of Phillips Petroleum stock from Grace Murray in memory of her parents; in accordance with her request, the dividends from this stock are deposited in the Grants Fund.
This fund was established in 1999 as a repository for memorial gifts that are not designated to any of the other funds by the donor. The persons honored in this memorial fund will be recorded in a perpetual list, which will be published in the Proceedings and annually in the Bulletin. As with the other Endowment Funds, the money placed in this fund will not be spent, constituting a perpetual memorial to the people so honored. Gifts may be sent directly to the Academy Treasurer with a letter describing the memorial to be recorded. The memorial statement should include the name of the person to be listed in the memorial along with a brief statement describing relevant information, especially with regard to contributions to the RAS functions, sections or to science in general.
The Expendable Funds
The money in the Expendable Funds is placed in three expense categories with defined goals. The Board of Directors, however, can decide to redirect any of these expendable funds to other purposes or needs if they determine that this is necessary.
This fund receives the interest from the Fairchild Fund as well as individual gifts. Since 1995 this fund has been totally self-supporting in that it has not received any funds from membership dues or from the General Fund. Money in this fund is used to publish the Proceedings and Academy booklets.
This fund receives the interest from the Grace Murray Fund, the Jensen Fund and dividends from the T.F. and A.A. Murray Fund as well as gifts from individuals or from sections of the Academy. Since 1995 this fund has been totally self-supporting in that it has not received any funds from membership dues or from the General Fund. Money in this fund is used to award research grants to undergraduate college students.
This fund receives the interest from the Speakers Fund as well as individual gifts. Since 1995 this fund has been totally self-supporting in that it has not received any funds from membership dues or from the General Fund. Money in this fund is used to pay the expenses and honoraria for invited speakers who give lectures at Academy events (primarily at the Fall Scientific Paper Session and the Spring Lecture).
ARTICLE I Name.
This organization shall be called the Rochester Academy of Science, Inc.
ARTICLE II Object.
The purpose of this society shall be to promote scientific study and research, to gain and publish a thorough knowledge of natural history, particularly of that part of the State of New York in the vicinity of Rochester, to make collections of material in illustration of the natural history of that region, and to disseminate scientific knowledge.
ARTICLE III Membership.
Membership in this Academy shall be open to any person interested in science, who shall subscribe to the objects and purposes of the Academy. There shall be five classes of members, namely, Active Members including children up to age 18, Junior Members, Student Members Non-resident Members, and Honorary Members, as further defined in the By-Laws.
ARTICLE IV Voting Privileges.
Only active members shall be entitled to vote or hold office in the Academy.
ARTICLE V Election of Members.
All candidates for membership shall be approved by the Board of Directors and elected by a three-fourths affirmative vote of the members present at any regular meeting of the Academy.
ARTICLE VI Officers.
The officers of the Academy shall be a President, a Vice-President, a Recording Secretary, a Corresponding Secretary, a Treasurer, and such other officers as may be provided for in the By-Laws. The officers shall be chosen annually, by plurality ballot, at the first regular meeting of the calendar year, and shall enter upon their duties at a time provided in the By-Laws.
ARTICLE VII Board of Directors.
The Board of Directors consists of the five constitutional officers of the Academy, the immediate past president, the chairman of each active section and six others, who shall be elected or designated, and for such terms of office, as the By-Laws provide.
ARTICLE VIII Quorum.
Ten active members at a regular meeting, and fifteen at a special meeting, shall constitute a quorum. Seven directors shall constitute a quorum at a Board meeting.
ARTICLE IX By-Laws.
By-Laws for the further regulation of the Academy may be adopted and amended.
ARTICLE X Alterations.
No alterations shall be made in this constitution except by a two-thirds vote at two successive regular business meetings after full notice of the proposed changes or amendments and date of the voting shall have been sent to all the Active Members.