Scholarships and Research Awards
Study Away Fund
Recognizing the value of a Study Away experience, the Department of Geography provides scholarships to defray associated costs. The amounts awarded may vary year-to-year, but are intended to be large enough (e.g., $500) to offset a sizeable portion a student’s travel expenses. Funds are only available to Geography majors in any Global Opportunities program, though preference may be given to students enrolled in Geography programs or taking Geography classes. The Department’s Awards Committee reviews applications, which include a two-page essay explaining how the experience will contribute to her/his education, and includes a list of courses to be taken away from campus. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA, and include a copy of their most recent DARS with their applications. Deadlines: October 1 (for Study Away over winter break, spring semester, or spring break) and March 1 (for Study Away over summer or fall semester). The Undergraduate Chair will send an announcement to majors concerning the availability of funds in advance of the deadlines and soliciting applications; application materials can be submitted to the Awards Committee Chair.
Department of Geography Research Grants
With the recommendation of their faculty advisors, Geography undergraduate students may request up to $100 for expenses incurred while conducting or presenting research related to their major. Students should ask for a letter of recommendation from their advisor, who will submit the request to the Department Chair along with a Travel Authorization Request Form for that student.
Scholarships awarded by the Department of Geography
The Department of Geography is pleased to provide a number of merit-based scholarships each year to undergraduate Geography majors. Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and a minimum of 30 semester hours attempted to be eligible, although some awards have greater requirements (see below). Hours attempted means hours earned for a letter grade at Ohio University. No award is based on financial need. The Awards Committee determines the eligible candidates for the scholarships every spring semester, and awards are usually presented at the annual "Geofest" dinner/celebration in April. Only the "Margaret Boyd Research Scholarship" (for applied geographic research) requires an application.
In addition to the awards described below the Department of Geography makes a monetary award to a few graduating seniors with exemplary academic records. Approximately five students receive the "Outstanding Senior" Award. The funds come from alumni and other benefactors to the Department of Geography.
- The Regina L. Bloemer Scholarship in Geography
The Regina L. Bloemer scholarship was established by the late Emeritus Professor H. L. (Hugh) Bloemer in honor of his mother (1907-1988) – "a true geographer without formal geographic training." When Regina Bloemer passed away Hubert and his siblings contributed money to endow a scholarship in her name. The recipient (or recipients) must have a minimum GPA of 3.3. In honor of Hubert, who was a Cartographer and instructed Ohio University students for nearly 30 years, the scholarship is typically awarded to a high-achieving student in the geo-techniques.
- The Olive Emler Ross Scholarship in Geography
The Olive Emler Ross Scholarship was established by alumnus Carl Ross, in honor of his native-Ohioan mother (1886-1970). Although not a professional geographer, she was always interested in geographic and meteorological information, and fond of her travels throughout the US, Canada, and Europe. Furthering one's education was paramount to her, and so this scholarship is designed to assist students with their financial needs.
The Department commonly makes four or five "Ross" Scholarships per year. Students must have completed their second or third year. GPA is very important, but the Committee may award the scholarships to high-achieving students in various tracks of the Geography major.
- The Hubert and Constance Wilhelm Geography Scholarship
The Hubert and Constance Wilhelm Scholarship was endowed by their son, David Wilhelm, as well as a number of other benefactors. Hugh Wilhelm was the first Chair of the Department of Geography when it separated from Geology in the late 1960s. Dr. Wilhelm was a cultural geographer who studied cultural landscapes and settlement landscapes in particular. He was a leading specialist in the settlement of the rural Midwest. He inspired students at Ohio University for over 30 years, and is the only Ohio University professor to have won the prestigious "University Professor" Award twice. His wife Connie was an instrumental factor in Hugh's success.
Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.35 and have a minimum of 30 hours attempted. In honor of Hubert, the scholarship is typically awarded to a student specializing in cultural geography.
- Bloemer Geography Scholarship
The Bloemer Geography Scholarship was established with money donated by the late Emeritus professor, Dr. Hubert "Hugh" Bloemer. Dr. Bloemer joined the faculty of the Department of Geography in 1971; he retired in 2009. During his tenure at Ohio University, Hugh served as Director of the University Cartographic Center, was Chair of the Department from 1993-1998, and Chair of the Faculty Senate from 2001-2004. In 1985 he was named a University Professor for excellence in teaching. Hugh established this scholarship to provide a significant portion of each recipient's tuition.
The recipient of this scholarship must have a minimum GPA of 3.5 and have at least 30 attempted hours. The recipient may be a sophomore, junior, or senior. GPA is a significant criterion for this award, but the recipient must demonstrate "outstanding interest and aptitude in the study of Geography, as well as potential for future achievement in the field." To help the Awards Committee determine the recipient, the committee may solicit a written statement and/or conduct an interview with eligible students. More than one recipient may be chosen, but the scholarship should provide at least 40% of each recipient's education expenses, including tuition, room and board, and required textbooks.
- The Elizabeth Llewellyn Robe Memorial Scholarship
The Elizabeth Llewellyn Robe Scholarship was established by Dr. T. Richard and Mrs. Eleanora Robe in honor of the Elizabeth Llewellyn Robe family. The scholarship is awarded in alternate years to an Appalachian student of merit majoring in Geography and Geological Sciences. In even years (2014-15, 2016-17, etc.), the scholarship is awarded to Geography majors on the Athens campus.
The Elizabeth Llewellyn Robe Memorial scholars will be selected principally on the basis of academic performance or potential and have a GPA of 3.5 or higher, but may be awarded to an incoming freshman with a high school rank in the upper 10%. The recipient must have graduated from a high school in one of the federally designated Appalachian counties of Ohio (Adams, Ashtabula, Athens, Belmont, Brown, Carroll, Clermont, Columbiana, Coshocton, Gallia, Guernsey, Harrison, Highland, Hocking, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Lawrence, Mahoning, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Muskingum, Noble, Perry, Pike, Ross, Scioto, Trumbull, Tuscarawas, Vinton, Washington). At the discretion of the Awards Committee, the scholarship may be awarded to an individual more than once provided the recipient meets eligibility requirements and makes satisfactory progress toward a degree.
- The David Keirns Public Service Award in Meteorology
The David Keirns Public Service Award in Meteorology was named in honor of David Keirns, a meteorology major who unfortunately passed away during his sophomore year at Ohio University. Recognizing David's contribution to the meteorology program and Scalia Laboratory for Atmospheric Analysis at Ohio University, this award is given annually to an undergraduate student of junior or senior rank who has continually gone above and beyond the call of duty for Scalia Laboratory and the meteorology program. Recipients of this award typically are involved with community outreach and education, routinely disseminating forecasts during situations of inclement or threatening weather outside of their scheduled times, and filling in for absences or missed weather forecasts. The primary deciding factor is a student's service contributions to the Scalia Laboratory and meteorology program as a whole, but academic merit may also be considered in deciding the award. Both the Director and Associate Director of Scalia Laboratory make the award decision.
- The Outstanding Undergraduate Scalia Scholar
The Outstanding Undergraduate Scalia Scholar award is given annually to a graduating senior on the basis of academic performance and research and other scholarly contributions to the Scalia Laboratory. Although the award is typically given to a Geography-Meteorology major, any student who has taken coursework in the meteorology major and/or has performed research or scholarly activity on behalf of the Scalia Laboratory for Atmospheric Analysis is eligible for the award. No set minimum GPA is required, however students typically have a cumulative GPA above a 3.0 and a major (or in the meteorology curriculum, for non-Geography/meteorology majors) GPA of 3.5 or higher. Both the Director and Associate Director of Scalia Laboratory make the award decision.
Research awards given by the Department of Geography
- Margaret Boyd Research Scholarships (Graduate and Undergraduate)
The Margaret Boyd Research Scholarship was named in honor of Margaret Boyd, Ohio University's first female graduate (class of 1873). The scholarship is to be used as research support for applied geographic research in Ohio, or elsewhere in the U.S. Recipients must be full-time graduate or undergraduate students, majoring in Geography on the Athens campus, with a minimum GPA of 3.0. The Awards Committee will give preference to graduate students.
The awards are made twice each year, consisting of a minimum of $50 and a maximum of $500. Applications must be submitted to the Awards Committee by October 15th and April 15th of each year, accompanied by a research proposal and two supporting letters from faculty. Graduate students are eligible only after they have defended their research proposal to the satisfaction of their committee. The chair of the student's committee must approve the proposal that is submitted to the Awards Committee.
Scholarships ($1,000 each) awarded annually by Gamma Theta Upsilon (GTU), the International Geographic Honor Society.
Scholarship recipients must be GTU members. Application materials and information on scholarships and memberships may be found on the GTU web site.
- The Buzzard Undergraduate Scholarship - awarded to a college senior for use toward graduate school expenses
- The Maxfield Scholarship - awarded to a junior or senior with either career or graduate school aspirations
- The Richason Scholarship - awarded to a junior or senior with either career or graduate school aspirations
- The Rechlin Scholarship - awarded to a junior or senior
Additional Scholarship Opportunities:
- Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Program - an accelerated one-year initial teaching license program with master's degree, for graduates who wish to prepare for a career teaching in middle or high schools. Open to college seniors, graduates, and career changers who have majored in and/or have a strong professional background in a STEM field (science, technology, engineering, or math.
- Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship - provides awards for U.S. undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study abroad programs worldwide.