The Joel Matthew Orloff Awards were established by Dr. and Mrs. Daniel Orloff in memory of their son Joel, a physics major, who died in an automobile accident shortly after graduation from MIT in 1978. One thousand dollars is awarded to each of several physics majors in the following three categories:
- Scholarship: Given to the student with the highest GPA in physics courses and, if a tie, the highest overall GPA.
- Research: Given to the student with the most outstanding senior thesis.
- Service: Given to the student with the most outstanding service to the department, Institute, or community.