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Awards and Scholarships

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Student Competitions

Student awards are important to the CGS. The CGS distributes more than $2,000 each year in student scholarships and awards. For many students, it is their first professional geography meeting and their first formal research presentation in a professional setting. Student awards, all of which are monetary, include the David Lantis Student Scholarship, Tom McKnight Student Paper Award, Joe Beaton Student Poster Award, Student Map Award, and Geosystems Award.

 

 



Tom McKnight Student Paper Award

The Tom McKnight Student Paper Award honors another longtime supporter of the CGS and its mission. Tom McKnight, from UCLA, was named Outstanding Educator in 1988. His consummate professional style and inquisitive nature earned McKnight the respect of generations of students, whom he engaged with his dynamic lectures. A prolific author of textbooks on North American and introductory geography, McKnight received awards from both Australian and Canadian geography organizations for his contributions to the field.

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Joe Beaton Student Poster Award

The Joe Beaton Student Poster Award carries the name of the late Joe Beaton, who received the Distinguished Teaching Award in 1994 and a Friend of Geography Award in 1997. Beaton, who taught at the California State Polytechnic Institute at Pomona, worked hard to stimulate students to observe and participate in the world. Never known for timidity, he taught with a bravado and energy that inspired students and colleagues alike.

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Geosystems Awards

The Geosystems Award is the first endowed award in the organization’s history. This was made possible in 2002 by Robert and Bobbé Christopherson. Bobbé and Robert’s Geosystems: An Introduction to Physical Geography is a leading textbook in physical geography. Their dedication to furthering our knowledge of the environment is reflected in their enthusiastic support of students. Robert Christopherson, from American River College, received the Outstanding Educator Award in 1997 and was keynote speaker in the Presidential Plenary at the 2002 meeting.

Each year a cash award for best physical geography paper is presented to an undergraduate and a graduate student who presents their research at the CGS annual conference.

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Lantis Scholarship

The David Lantis Student Scholarship is named after the organization’s seventh president, from CSU Chico. David Lantis received the Distinguished Service Award in 1976 and was named Outstanding Educator in 1991. Now deceased, Lantis authored numerous articles and textbooks including a California geography textbook used by educators throughout the state. He was a strong supporter of the California Geographical Society.

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Student Map Award

The California Geographical Society invites students - undergraduate and graduate - to share and be rewarded for their work in cartography at our annual conference. The CGS offers a serious and supportive environment for students to present their cartographic work. A panel of cartographers will judge all entries. Students entering maps in the competition must be available to answer judges’ questions during the judging period.

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Student Travel Award

The California Geographical Society invites faculty members of Geography Departments and Programs in California to nominate a deserving undergraduate and/or graduate student to attend the Annual Conference of the California Geographical Society. The student travel award provides $150 to recipients to offset costs associated with the annual meeting. The award provides an opportunity for a student to gain experience from attending a statewide conference; it is not necessary that the student give a paper. We do ask that grant recipients share their experience by submitting a short reflection piece on their conference experience, to be included in the CGS Bulletin.

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