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Student Awards Information

Each year the PGS hosts two student contests during the annual meeting. Below are the rules for these contests.
Please contact Joseph Zume (jtzume@ship.edu), chair of PGS Student Awards, if you have any questions.

Student Paper Competition


Any graduate or undergraduate student who is registered and presenting at the PGS meeting is eligible to compete in the student paper competition. Separate competitions will be held for graduate and undergraduate students. Students may enter the paper competition by checking the appropriate box when registering for the conference using the PGS website. Rules for the poster competition are as follows:

(1) The presentation must be geographic in scope.


(2) An abstract must be submitted at the time of registration. Student must indicate the paper's geographic theme(s) during the registration process.


(3) The student must be the lead author of the paper and it must reflect original work the student performed and completed within the year prior to the PGS annual meeting. Co-authorship of papers is permitted with the first author listed considered the lead author.


(4) The presentation must be prepared entirely by the applicant. However, this may be under the direction of a faculty member.


(5)The individual must be a student enrolled in a recognized program at the time of the competition at the annual meeting or, in the case of undergraduate or masters level competitors, have graduated no earlier than the previous spring term. Ph.D. candidates who have graduated prior to the PGS annual meeting are not eligible.


(6) The format of student presentations follows the general PGS guidelines for paper presentations. 20 minutes are allotted for presentations, but students are encouraged to limit their presentation to 15 minutes and leave 5 minutes for questions.


(7) All oral presentations are podium style with stationary microphone, a laptop computer for Power Point slide presentations at the podium, and digital screen projection.


(8) Students are not required to submit written papers to compete in the paper competition. Student award winners may be invited to submit and publish a short paper related to their oral presentation in a future edition of the Pennsylvania Geographer.


(9) Paper will be judged in accordance with the paper judging rubric posted on the PGS website within the Student Awards section. A panel of three PGS judges will score the presenters during the oral presentation. The decision of these judges is final. Judges are not obligated to reveal their score sheets.


(10) Up to three cash awards and certificates may be given to outstanding student papers in graduate and undergraduate categories.


Student Paper Contest Scoring Rubric

Elaine Bosowski Map Award 


The Elaine F. Bosowski Map Award is presented to the best graduate or undergraduate student map or poster displayed at the annual meeting of the Pennsylvania Geographic Society (PGS) Society. The award is given in memory of the late Elaine F. Bosowski whose devotion to her students and dedication to geographic education placed her at the forefront of the teaching profession. Graduate and undergraduate students may enter the poster contest by checking the appropriate box when registering for the conference using the PGS website. Rules for the poster competition are as follows: 

(1) The posters theme must be geographic in scope and must contain cartographic or graphic components.


(2) An abstract must be submitted at the time of registration. Student must indicate the posters' geographic theme(s) during the registration process.


(3) The student must be the lead author of the poster and it must reflect original work the student performed and completed within the year prior to the PGS annual meeting. Co-authorship of posters is permitted with the first author listed considered the lead author.


(4) The poster must be prepared entirely by the applicant. However, this may be under the direction of a faculty member.


(5) The individual must be a student enrolled in a recognized program at the time of the competition at the annual meeting or, in the case of undergraduate or masters level competitors, have graduated no earlier than the previous spring term. Ph.D. candidates who have graduated prior to the PGS annual meeting are not eligible.


(6) Poster dimensions must be at least 36 inches in height and 48 inches in width but cannot exceed 60 inches in width and 48 inches in height. The poster needs to be attached to a hard-backed material in such a way that it can be displayed on an easel.


(7) The lead author must be present during the designated poster judging time to answer judges' questions in order to be eligible to receive the Elaine Bosowski award.


(8) Posters will be judged in accordance with the poster judging rubric posted on the PGS website within the Student Awards section. A panel of three PGS judges will interview the presenters and score the posters. The decision of these judges is final. Judges are not obligated to reveal their score sheets.


(9) Up to two cash awards and certificates may be given to outstanding student posters in graduate and undergraduate categories.


Student Poster/Map Contest Scoring Rubric


The Pennsylvania Geographical Society exists to promote effective geographic teaching, research, and literacy.


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