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Our Scholarships Fund Research

We fund student and professional research projects through cash scholarships of up to $1000, thanks to generous donations from our members, private companies, and through the sales of guidebooks and other publications. Since 1995, we have given more than $144,000 to over 210 students from schools throughout the US.


We award several scholarships each year. Applications are judged on clarity, relevance, and potential research impact. Awards are given with no strings attached; however only one scholarship will be awarded per student per degree. Winners are encouraged to present their research at our annual TRGS Field Conference. Presentations are typically a GSA-style poster, a slideshow talk, a field trip, or a journal-style article for review and publication in Northwest Geology. Financial assistance available to attend the Field Conference if needed. 

Richard I. Gibson TRGS travel fund

The purpose of the Richard I. Gibson TRGS travel fund is to provide support for travel expenses to attend the TRGS summer field conference. "Travel expenses” means things like lodging, airfare, vehicle rental, or gasoline for personal vehicles. The recipient must attend substantially all of a TRGS meeting, i.e. typically a Friday-Saturday-Sunday. The awards will go to undergrad and graduate students in geosciences, as well as to young professionals (to age 30 at the time of the award) including those in academia and other earth science professions. The award money available to applicants each year is $1,000. The maximum award is $500 per applicant, and up to $1,000 may be awarded each year. Payments will be made after the conference. Applications are due on July 1st of each year.

Apply Here

Gibson-TRGS Field Course Award for Excellence

​Attention Field Camp Professors! Nominate your best field students for this $250 award.

Applications are due on September 30th of each year.  See informational brochure.

Field Scholarships - applications due February 15 every year

TRGS Field Scholarship(s) go to students working on field-based projects in the northern Rocky Mountains. Preference goes to mapping projects in Montana, Idaho, and northern Wyoming.

The Harrison Scholarship(s) go to students working on a field-based project involving Precambrian rocks. 

The Michael Thompson Foster and Peter Kinnison Foster Scholarship(s) go to students, researchers, or explorationists who best exemplify the prospector ethic. Awarded to those with a demonstrated interest and ability in mineral exploration, field research, or economic pursuits that advance our knowledge of mineral commodities and public commitment to responsible mining. 

The M. Dean Kleinkopf Scholarship(s) go to students undertaking geophysical field projects in the northern Rocky Mountains.

The Betty Skipp Research Award for Field Studies in the Rocky Mountains goes to women graduate students for research with a significant component of original geological fieldwork in Idaho, Montana, Utah, Colorado, or Wyoming.  If funds are sufficient, men may also be supported.

The Belt Association Scholarship(s) go to students working on a field-based project involving Belt Supergroup or correlative rocks.

The Sibanye-Stillwater Scholarship(s) go to students working on a projects associated with mining or mineral exploration.

How to Apply for Field Scholarships

Submit a single, 4-page PDF document containing the following:

•    Applicant's name.

•    Applicant's physical mailing address.

•    E-mail address.

•    Name of educational institution and department.

•    Degree sought (BS, MS, PhD, or other).

•    Advisor's name and/or co-authors, as you deem appropriate.

•    Project title.

•   Well-written, concise and complete, proposal of your research project. Address research objectives, include a few pertinent illustrations, and outline your methodology.  And the time frame of project organized into simple time units (i.e., Fall/Spring semesters, summer field seasons, etc.). 2 pages maximum.

•    Study area map(s) clearly showing the project area in its pertinent geological context. 1 page maximum.

•    Field expenses budget outline. A simple spreadsheet works well, 1 page maximum.

•    If applicant has previously received a TRGS scholarship, include a separate page with the project title, abstract, amount of award, a brief note on how TRGS money was spent, and how the new work (proposed in this application) will build on the previous work. 1 page maximum.

Due Date

Applications are due on February 15th of every year.

Where to Send Your Completed Application

Send your complete application as a single PDF document to: Kelsay Stanton,

Who May Apply

Undergraduate and graduate students in Geoscience programs are eligible for all awards except the Betty Skipp Research Awards which is restricted to graduate students. Other researchers and early career professionals in the Geosciences may apply for the Foster Scholarship. Preference goes to mapping projects in Montana, Idaho, and northern Wyoming. Only one scholarship will be awarded per student per degree (BS,  MS, PhD).

Selection Criteria

The Scholarship Committee will review and score applications based on strength of the field component, clarity of proposal, and potential importance to geoscience. The Committee will determine which of the 5 scholarships is most appropriate for each applicant and forward their recommendations to the Executive Committee to make the final decisions. Applicants should review the priorities of all named scholarship funds, but need not apply for a specific scholarship.


Announcement of Winners

Winners are announced by April 15.

Presenting Your Research

Winners are strongly encouraged to present their research findings (or progress towards findings) at an annual TRGS Field Conference. Winners will receive free registration to the meeting where they present. Financial assistance may be available if needed.


Promotion by TRGS

By submitting an application, you give TRGS permission to publish, at its option, an abstract and images from your proposal, either online (website, Facebook) or in Northwest Geology (printed journal), or both.

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