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Undergraduate Research Program


Formally known as the Geography Undergraduate Mentors Program (GUMP), this program encourages undergraduate students to work closely with a selected faculty mentor on research.

  • Have you wondered how faculty do their research?
  • Are you eager to learn more about a specific topic or issue?
  • Would you like to work with a faculty member on a research project?


Ready to participate in GUMP?

  • Identify a professor you would like to work with. This might be someone you've had a class with who has spoken about their research.
  • Reach out to that professor and let them know you are interested in the GUMP program and possibly working with them.
  • Once you have a faculty member's approval then you will complete a short application for the program.
  • GUMP students work closely with their faculty mentor to prepare a professional presentation for a conference in the fall semester.
  • The department covers the student’s registration fee, transportation (via a seat in the department van) and hotel cost.


The goals of the program are to learn how to conduct research in geography, global studies, or geospatial information science, to cultivate and expand your skills and knowledge and to develop a mutually beneficial mentor-student relationship. All while having a great time! 


  • February or March: The GUMP application cycle is announced by email and via the department website.
  • Late April/early May: Students accepted into GUMP are notified before the end of the spring semester.
  • Summer: GUMP participants are encouraged to enroll in three independent study hours with their faculty mentor over the summer. GUMP students work with their faculty mentor to identify a suitable conference for their research presentation.
  • Early September: Conference abstracts are due.
  • October: Attend and present at the conference.

How to apply:

  • Prepare a letter of interest, explaining why you wish to participate, describing your interests in geography, global studies or geospatial information science, and identifying a professor who has agreed to mentor you .
  • Obtain an unofficial transcript.
  • Submit the above materials to the Undergraduate Committee, attention Don Colley,

Questions? Reach out to any faculty member in Geography.

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