Application FAQs

Diverse and underrepresented undergraduate and graduate students from two and four year colleges and recent college graduates are eligible to apply. GSA encourages applications from low income, minority, veterans, first generation, non-traditional, women, LBGTQ, and students with disabilities.
No, you do not have to be a GSA member to apply to the OTF Program. If you are not a member you will receive membership for one year if awarded.
No, you do not have to present research in order to apply to the OTF Program. However, GSA is committed to advancing scientific findings and therefore we encourage students to submit posters of their research.
Yes, you can still apply if you have received other GSA financial grants. The online application will ask for specific program grant information and amounts. We ask that if you are awarded through OTF that you do not sign up to be a student volunteer at the meeting because your full meeting registration will be covered under your award.
OTF awardees will be provided partial travel funds to the Annual Meeting. This funding may be used to cover travel, food, and lodging expenses and will be awarded by mail after the Annual Meeting. Awardees are encouraged to seek additional local and/or in-kind funding from individuals or from their home institution. OTF will cover your full meeting registration. As an awardee you do not need to provide any receipts.
The deadline to apply is at the end of May. Awardees will receive notification by the end of July.
Awardees will receive payment by mail in the form of a check after the Annual Meeting. In order to receive your check you will have to check in at the Annual Meeting office to verify your attendance.
GSA is required to issue 1099 tax forms to all awardees who receive a travel scholarship of $600 or more. It is up to the awardee to report these earnings to the IRS.
Yes. OTF has a number of events that you will need to attend. They are organized at times so that they do not interfere with scientific sessions or other major events. These events will provide you with information and networking opportunities that will be extremely valuable for your future careers.
Yes. We would like to maintain contact with you through social media/email/newsletters and other means so that we can assist you in the future. GSA strongly encourages OTF students to continue to be involved in the organization through membership, leadership opportunities in the organization’s governance, and participation in other outreach activities.

Additionally, if you are an OTF alum and have graduated, we encourage you to complete the OTF Contact Update Form so that we may stay in touch with you.
No. OTF is only open to students who are studying at a North American institutions.
No, you do not need to be a U.S. Citizen to apply, however you must study at a North American institution and have the ability to travel to the Annual Meeting. This may require either a passport or visa depending on the location of the meeting. It will be your responsibility to apply for the proper documentation in time in order to attend the Annual Meeting.
If you decide you cannot attend the Annual Meeting, please contact Tahlia Bear immediately. OTF usually has a waiting list of students and your grant could be awarded to another student.
OTF is funded by individual donors and sponsorship and the amounts vary by year. Over the last two years, the average award was $507 and ranged from $50 to $1,000. The amount you receive will depend on your proximity to the Annual Meeting location.
In 2014, about 60% of students paid for the rest of their travel through a combination of university or departmental funding and personally covering the costs. 9% of students received some type of other GSA award such as a Section Travel Grant orMinority Scholarship Award. If you are looking for ideas on how to fund the rest of your travel to the Meeting, check out the Additional Funding Tips.

For all other questions, please contact Tahlia Bear, 303-357-1066, .

OTF Contact:

Tahlia Bear
Career and Diversity Officer
Geological Society of America
3300 Penrose Place
Boulder, CO 80301

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