The Jean Y. Jew Women's Rights Award was established in the spring of 1992 to honor Jew and others who demonstrate outstanding effort or achievement in improving the status of women on campus.

Nominations for the Jean Y. Jew Women's Rights Award are solicited each year by the Women's Resource and Action Center (WRAC) and the Council on the Status of Women (CSW).

The award was created by the Council on the Status of Women (CSW) and co-sponsored by the Women's Resource and Action Center (WRAC), after it was decided an award honoring women's rights at The University of Iowa was long overdue. Dee Casteel, chair of the first award selection committee, said that CSW decided to name the award after Jew because "she is an example of someone who has been willing to stand up against discrimination." She added, "All women on campus have won a significant battle because she was willing to make the effort -- emotional, physical effort -- and stand up to the situation in her department."