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Awards and Fellowships

Richard A. Davis Endowed Fellowship in Geology

The Richard A. Davis Endowed Fellowship in Geology is presented annually at the Geology Alumni Society (GAS) banquet in February. Two graduate fellowships are awarded each year: one for an outstanding MS. student, and one for an exceptional Ph.D. student. Last year, $1,500 was awarded to the selected Ph.D. candidate, and $1000 was awarded to the chosed MS. candidate. The fellowship recognizes outstanding accomplishments in research and leadership among fellow graduate students and within the scientific community during the previous year.

  • The fellowship application is typically due in November.

To apply, please submit the following materials to Judy McIlrath.

  1. A letter of nomination, outlining the candidate's research accomplishments in the past year. Self-nominations are encouraged.
  2. A letter of support from the candidate's faculty mentor/advisor. If the nominator is the faculty mentor, this may constitute the letter of nomination.
  3. A short curriculum vita for the candidate, outlining their professional accomplishments during the past year. A NSF style biographic sketch is preferred
  4. If nominated by a faculty member, candidates are encouraged to submit a 250 word statement of their research progress and accomplishments during the past 12 months.

The Geology Alumni Society Fellowship Committee, will review all applications and determine the recipients.

You are highly encouraged to submit an application! Someone is going to receive this free money . . . . why not you?

Graduate Assistants

The geography and environmental science & policy programs award graduate assistantships annually. Students are usually given a two year contract as a graduate assistant. If a student would like to be considered for a graduate assistantship, he or she should complete the Graduate Assistantship Application and forward it to Dr. Ruiliang Pu, Graduate Director, prior to the semester under consideration. Graduate assistantships are awarded based upon grade point average, GRE scores, and original application materials.

Graduate assistants are under the direct supervision of the Chair of the Department and the Graduate Director who assign the specific duties to the students. Typically students are required to supervise labs, grade exams, assist with audio-visual equipment, and teach specific lectures in courses. Students may be assigned to assist particular faculty. When this occurs, the faculty member is the direct supervisor of the graduate assistant. On occasion, students are given the responsibility for individual courses.

Project Assistants

Project assistants are students who are hired to assist faculty with grant-funded projects. Usually one or two students per semester are hired by individual faculty to complete computer analysis, map drafting, field work, or laboratory analysis. Students may be hired on salary or on an hourly basis. The rate of pay varies from project to project. Students are selected by individual faculty based upon the skills needed for individual projects.

Other Financial Support

On occasion, graduate students in the department are hired by other units on campus. In the past, these units have been The Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR), the United States Geological Survey, and the Florida Center for Community Design and Research (FCCDR). Students may submit applications for employment at these offices. In addition, part-time and full-time jobs that become known to the department are posted on the bulletin board outside of the department office (NES 201).


Fellowships are funds received by the student for which no work is required. USF's Graduate Fellowship is awarded annually, on a competitive basis, to full-time students of outstanding academic potential. Recipients receive $7,000 for the academic year (Fall and Spring semesters) and a partial tuition waiver.

For specific information and an application, students are advised to contact the Graduate School at (813) 974-2846, or check the Graduate School web page at

Scholarships, Grants, Work Study, and Loans

The Graduate School houses a Scholarship Library that allows students to access information on private sources of funding through computerized databases as well as source books.

The Office of Financial Aid administers the Federal Work Study Program as well as several loan programs. Students interested in loans or work study should apply as soon as possible after January 1 each year for the coming academic year, which starts in August. Application packets are available outside the Office of Financial Aid (SVC 1102) or by calling (813) 974-4700.