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Graduate Scholarships, Fellowships and Awards


The Graduate Program Committee (GPC) invites nominations for the scholarships and awards listed below.

For the Annual Travel and Research Awards and the Shell Research Facilitation Awards, application materials must be submitted in a single pdf file that is named: AwardTitle_LastName_FirstName.pdf.

For departmental fellowships and scholarships, as well as the Chevron Graduate Student Scholarship, the file should simply be named: LastName_FirstName.pdf.

For example, if Albert Einstein were applying for a Krynine Award, his file would be called: Krynine_Einstein_Albert.pdf.


A rubric for evaluation of the applications is available online at:

Annual Travel and Research Funds

Applications for Annual Travel and Research Funds should include:

1. A copy of the abstract to be presented at the meeting, if you are requesting funds to attend a meeting.

2. All other information requested here
Please fill in the document and submit with your application.

*Note that we ask for only a simple acknowledgement of support from the academic advisor. Travel & Research fund applications do not require a letter of recommendation

Paul D. Krynine Scholarship: The Paul D. Krynine award started with funds provided by faculty members and alumni of the Department of Geosciences.  Krynine awards provide financial aid for deserving graduate students in any program of the Geosciences.  Funds can be used for any purpose. In Fall semester, awards are most typically made to support research-related travel or to attend conferences; in Spring semester, awards commonly support research related travel or other research costs. We anticipate that in 2019-20, Krynine funds will be used to support the majority of complete applications submitted by graduate students in good academic standing. The typical award amount is $400-500.

 2019/2020 Application Deadlines are September 30, 2019 and February 15, 2020

Shell Research Travel Awards for AAPG
: Supports travel costs for graduate students giving a talk or poster at the AAPG meeting.  Statement should describe and document why travel cannot be supported by advisor and current research projects.  Typical award amount is $1,000-$2,000.

Next Application Deadline is January 31, 2020

Departmental Scholarships and Fellowships
Application Deadlines for all awards is March 31, 2020

Students should submit a single application (procedure and contents described below) for departmental fellowships and scholarships and the Chevron Graduate Student Scholarship (applications for the Shell Research Facilitation Awards should be submitted separately and will be considered in addition to your single application for the departmental awards). As part of the application, applicants should highlight the award(s) for which their application is best suited. The graduate program committee (GPC) will make decisions based on the strength of the application, following the rubric (, and will consider applications for each of the awards on the basis of the research description, purpose of the awards as described below, and/or eligibility. We anticipate that there will be one or in some cases two awardees for each of these competitive scholarships and fellowships. 

In selecting awardees, the GPC will adhere to the wishes of the donors, as described below. Awards are open to graduate students enrolled in the Geosciences, unless otherwise noted.


Application Procedure

Nominations should include:

1) A nomination letter from the faculty advisor. This should be sent separately to the Graduate Program Office.

2) A statement by the student that includes: (a) indication of the scholarship(s) or fellowships(s) that you believe are most appropriate to your application; and (b) a summary of qualifications for the award and plans for proposed research, including a budget (~2 pages for statement and budget).

3) A current C.V., transcript of PSU grades, and most recent progress report.


Scholarship and Fellowship Descriptions

Alley Family Graduate Scholarship in the Department of Geosciences
Purpose:  Consideration for this scholarship shall be given to graduate students enrolled or planning to enroll in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, or successor academic unit, at The Pennsylvania State University who are studying a discipline related to climate science in the Department of Geoscience.

2018 Winners
Allison Karp
Elisabeth Clyne

Richard Standish Good Graduate Scholarship in Geosciences
Purpose:To recognize and support research by outstanding graduate students in Geosciences. Preference will be given to students conducting research in geobiology, geochemistry, or astrobiology and the origin of life. Typical award is $1000-$2000.

2018 Winners:
Allison Fox
Kirsten Stephens

Michael Loudin Family Graduate Scholarship
Purpose: To provide financial assistance to a graduate student who is a candidate from a graduate degree in the Department of Geosciences.  First preference will be given to students who demonstrate financial need.

Charles E. Knopf, Sr., Memorial Scholarship
Purpose:To provide recognition and financial assistance for research by outstanding first-year graduate students.  Preference shall be given to students interested in pursuing an academic career in Geology. Typical award is $4000-$7000.

2018 Winners:
Troy Ferland
Judit Gonzalez Santana
Gabriella Rossetto
Elena Stiles
Damaris Wyatt

Hiroshi and Koya Ohmoto Graduate Fellowship in Geosciences
Purpose:To recognize and support graduate students exhibiting academic excellence. Scholarships shall be awarded for one academic year and may be renewed for subsequent years providing the recipient continues to meet the conditions of eligibility.  Typical award is $4000-$7000.

2018 Winners:
Claire Cleveland
Erica Pitcavage

Richard R. Parizek Graduate Fellowship
Purpose:To recognize and support research by graduate students exhibiting academic excellence. Preference will be given to students studying hydrogeology.  Typical award is $4000-$7000.

2018 Winners:
Kalle Jahn
Joanmarie DelVecchio

Scholten-Williams-Wright Scholarship in Field Geology
Purpose:PhD students involved in summer field studies in geology that involve a significant component of geologic mapping. Preference to students with superior academic records and who have the ability to express ideas concisely, lucidly, and logically in speech and writing.  Typical award is $1000-$3000.

2018 Winners:
Julia Carr
Alex Neely
Judi Sclafani
Elisabeth Clyne

Donald B. and Mary E. Tait Scholarship in Microbial Biogeochemistry
Purpose: Scholarships are awarded to graduate students who have demonstrated outstanding ability, or potential, in research on the role of bacteria in geological processes, including microbial biogeochemistry. This scholarship is offered to graduates every other year when the beginning year is even. (e.g. 2016-2017).

2018 Winners:
Beth Hoagland
Adriana Rizzo
Chloe Stanton

Barry Voight Volcano Hazards Endowment
Purpose:Graduate students or professionals representing foreign volcanological organizations engaged in research or education to mitigate volcano hazards.  Preference will be given to international students or foreign professionals currently engaged in hazards-reduction activities. A demonstrated financial need may also be a consideration. Funds for graduate research, academic travel for students or visiting professionals, study abroad opportunities, etc.  Typical award is $1000-$2000.

2018 Winners:
Judit Gonzalez-Santana

Energy-Related Awards

Chevron Graduate Student Scholarship  Purpose: Full-time PhD students only. Minimum 3.3 GPA.  Must be pursuing a degree beneficial to Chevron.  Must demonstrate knowledge and interest in Chevron and energy industry. Two $5,000 awards.

2017 Winners:
Peter Miller, "Consolidation of incoming sediments to the Aleutian subduction zone: implications for hydrologic and mechanical state of sediment at the subduction interface"

Abby Kenigsberg, "The Effects of Fault Composition and Microstructures on Fault Weakness: A Study of Natural and Synthetic Clay-rich Gouges"

Shell Geosciences Energy Research Facilitation Award  Purpose:Graduate students doing research with an emphasis on energy-related investigations. Awardees will be asked to make an informal presentation on their work to Shell researchers. Shell researchers will review proposals and provide input for award selection.

 David Bolton
         Julia Carr
         Arnold Eatmon
         Troy Ferland
         Allison Fox
         Xiaoni Hu
         Peter Miller
         Dorivaldo Santos
         Srisharan Shreedharan
         Clay Wood

Department of Geosciences Teaching Assistant Award

The Department of Geosciences is committed to a high-quality educational experience for our undergraduate students. In addition, we wish to develop the teaching skills of our graduate students. Toward these ends, the Department is pleased to offer a $1,000 Teaching Assistant Award each semester to recognize superior graduate student teaching assistants (TAs).

Department of Geosciences graduate students who are teaching within our curriculum in a given semester are encouraged to submit their own nomination.  The nomination materials should include a teaching statement outlining their philosophy, a recommendation letter from a faculty member who has observed them in the classroom, and an optional TA portfolio.  The TA portfolio can take several forms.

To facilitate interaction and coordination between the TA and her or his faculty recommender, we suggest that the faculty member observe the TA in the classroom at least twice per semester. TA's may also find that gathering feedback from students is beneficial. Examples of student assessment forms can be found below.

TA Mid-semester Evaluation
TA End-semester Evaluation
TA Faculty Evaluation

2017 Winner:
Erica Pitcavage