The CaGIS Student Scholarships

During the 2019-20 academic year, the CaGIS Student Scholarship has instead been reframed to support students to attend AutoCarto 2020 to present their research. Please visit the AutoCarto 2020 Student Assistantships page for more information.

Each year, the Cartography and Geographic Information Society (CaGIS) sponsors three scholarships to students whose research and accomplishments support the mission of CaGIS. The scholarships recognize academic achievement and encourage the continuing success of outstanding cartography and geographic information science students. The scholarships also recognize achievement or potential for achievement in original research advancing the specific disciplines of cartography or GIScience. Winners are selected based on academic achievement, particularly in the calendar year prior to the award. Applications are reviewed by the CaGIS Scholarship Committee, and awards are announced in March. 


CaGIS Masters Scholarship Award: Two outstanding candidates will each receive $750. Winners will have demonstrated excellence in cartography or GIScience coursework and the potential to contribute to cartography or GIScience research.

CaGIS Doctoral Scholarship Award: One outstanding candidate will receive $1,500. The winner will have demonstrated excellence in cartography or GIScience coursework and the potential to contribute to cartography or GIScience research.

Winners of both awards are invited to submit their research at an upcoming CaGIS-sponsored conference (such as AAG, GIScience, or AutoCarto) and may be eligible for limited travel or registration support if they choose to present.

Eligibility for 2019 Award Competition

CaGIS Masters Scholarship Award: This award is to be granted to two students currently enrolled in, or accepted into, a Masters degree program for the 2018-2019 academic year. Outstanding undergraduates or individuals returning to school that have been accepted to a Masters program in GIScience are also eligible to apply (see below).

CaGIS Doctoral Scholarship Award: This award is to be granted to a student enrolled in, or accepted into, a PhD degree program for the 2018-2019 academic year.  Outstanding candidates that are not currently enrolled as a student, but have been accepted to a PhD program are also eligible to apply.

Award priority will be given to those candidates that are currently enrolled in a four-year undergraduate or graduate degree program during 2018 or 2019, studying cartography, geographic information science, or a closely related field. A letter of recommendation from a faculty member attesting to these eligibility requirements and to scholarly achievement and potential is required. Membership in CaGIS is not required, though professional and service activities such as participation in CaGIS is one of the selection criteria (see below). Nominations may only be done by current CaGIS members. Prior scholarship winners are eligible to apply in subsequent years if all appropriate criteria are satisfied. Applicants who have applied to, but have not yet been accepted into, graduate school should request that their faculty advisor assess their potential for graduate study in their reference letter.

Selection Criteria

The CaGIS Scholarship Committee reviews each applicant and their package in a holistic fashion. The committee is purposed with awarding applicants that best represent the overall spirit and mission of CaGIS. Each applicant is asked to submit a complete application package which is composed of the following artifacts:

Applicant’s statement

Record of research activities (e.g., published papers, presentations at professional meetings, grant applications, etc.)

Service activities to the profession (active membership on student organizations such as GTU, reviewer for an academic journal, reviewing grant proposals, active membership on a professional board of directors, community outreach, etc.) or non-professional (e.g., assistance with TWiST GIS camp, Boys and Girls GIS camp, GIS corps, community engagement, etc.)

Academic record (current transcripts) with particular emphasis on GIScience and domain specific coursework

A nomination letter by a current CaGIS member

Official CaGIS scholarship application form

The committee examines these artifacts holistically to determine each applicant’s merit. While these artifacts are not weighted per se, their order does reflect the relative importance the committee places on each. While evaluating each applicants, the committee is sensitive to each candidate’s progress toward degree completion (PhD student, ADB, etc.), academic level (MS vs. PhD), and year of study (1st, 2nd, etc.). The committee is also mindful regarding expectations between MS and PhD applicants.

Level of stated financial need will also be considered, if necessary, to break ties, after the primary artifacts have been considered. The committee can choose to award no scholarships. Award recipients will receive a complementary one-year membership in CaGIS.

Application Procedure

For reference, details on the 2019 competition procedures are listed below.

  1. Prepare the following artifacts to be included in your completed packet:
    • A 500-word statement that includes a discussion of your:
      • Educational objectives and research activities
      • Future study or research plans
      • Service activities in the profession and research supporting the mission of CaGIS

Note that the statement is not a research proposal. Rather, your statement should clearly and concisely articulate who you are as a GIScience student and your potential to excel in the discipline.

  1. A digital transcript showing records for relevant years between 2016-2018. A letter of nomination from a current CaGIS member. The nomination letter must be from a current CaGIS member (e.g., faculty member or supervisor) familiar with your research activities.
The completed application form
  1. E-mail these documents; see instructions on form. Applications must arrive no later than 5:00pm EST on JANUARY 19, 2019.

Notification of Winners

The selected applicants for the scholarships will be notified in March.

CaGIS Scholarship Committee:

Rakesh Malhotra, Eric Delmelle, Thomas Pingel

Contact Information:

Rakesh Malhotra


Previous Scholarship Winners

2019Ph.D.Brent Dell (University of Texas at Dallas)
Advisor: May Yuan
2018Ph.D.Amber Bosse (University of Kentucky)
Advisor: Matthew Wilson
2017Ph.D.Carolyn Fish (Penn State)
Advisor: Cynthia Brewer
Master’sDaniel Stephen (Oregon State)
Advisor: Bernhard Jenny
Master’sKristen Vincent (Wisconsin-Madison)
Advisor: Robert Roth
2016Ph.D.Yingjie Hu (UC Santa Barbara)
Advisor: Krzysztof Janowicz
Master’sKelsi Davis (University of Alabama)
Advisors: Broadbent & Zambrano
Master’sRudy Omri (University of Oregon)
Advisor: Amy Lobben
2015Ph.D.Bojan Šavrič (Oregon State University)
Advisor: Bernhard Jenny
Master’sPai Hui Yu (Arizona State University)
Advisor: Stephanie Deitrick
Master’sAnnalisa Ingegno (University of Montana)
2014Ph.D.Song Gao (UC Santa Barbara)
Advisors: Janowicz & Goodchild
Master’sMingshu Wang (University of Georgia)
Advisor: Marguerite Madden
Master’sHelena Merschdorf (University of Salzburg, Austria)
Advisor: Thomas Blaschke
2013Ph.D.Alexandre Bevington (University of Ottawa)
Advisor: Antoni Lewkowicz
Master’sJohn Brakeall (Florida International University)
Advisor: Jeffrey Onsted
Master’sPaulo Raposo (Penn State University)
Advisor: Cynthia Brewer

Join the largest Cartography and Geographic Information Science network.