Application Process

Please carefully read the information below before proceeding to the online application form.

Application Deadline:

  • February 15, 2017
  • Students will be notified of acceptance by email in early March.

Eligibility: Gateway Projects

  • Rising Sophomore or Junior when the summer project begins.
  • Citizen or permanent resident of the United States or its possessions.

Eligibility: Focused and Frontier Projects

  • Rising junior or senior when the summer project begins.
  • Declared geology or geology-related major enrolled in a degree program leading to a bachelor’s degree.
  • Completed course prerequisites for the project, and willing to complete a semester, block, or year of independent study or a senior thesis based on the Keck summer research project.
  • Citizen or permanent resident of the United States or its possessions.

Fellowships and Expenses

  • The fellowship for student participants is $500/week; Gateway projects are five weeks, and Focused and Frontier projects are four weeks. Fellowships are disbursed at the end of the summer program.
  • Most projects cover travel and living expenses (room and board) during the duration of the summer program. In some exceptional circumstances (e.g. international travel), student fellowships might be reduced to help cover travel costs. Please see project description for exceptions.

Application Procedure

Before proceeding with your online application, ask a faculty member at your institution to provide a letter of recommendation.  Students applying for Focused and Frontier projects must also ask a faculty member to serve as your on-campus Research Advisor. Follow this link to read the expectations for the research advisor; please discuss these expectations with your research advisor to confirm they are willing and able to support your application. Your Faculty Recommender and Faculty Research Advisor can be the same person.

A complete application packet includes:

  1. Online application form (see below).
  2. Online recommendation form from a faculty member. Please ask your Faculty Recommender* to use the following link to make their recommendation: Faculty Recommender link.
  3. Frontier and Focused Projects only: Online verification from your research advisor that they agree to supervise your work for the coming year. Please ask your Faculty Research Advisor to use the following link to verify their commitment as your research advisor: Faculty Advisor link.

 *Important Note: Faculty Recommenders verify your courses and grades submitted on your online application form. It is your responsibility to supply your recommender with an official or unofficial transcript and to ensure that the information you submit is accurate; a misrepresentation or falsification of your academic record will result in voiding your application and will be reported to your home institution for potential disciplinary action.

The online application requires the following information:

  • Name
  • College Information
  • Overall GPA
  • Major GPA (if declared)
  • Past Coursework and Grades
  • Anticipated Coursework and/or Field Camps before the Keck REU project starts
  • Faculty Recommender’s name and email
  • On-campus Research Advisor’s name and email (may be the same person as your recommender)
  • Essays responding to the following prompts:
  1. The Keck Geology Consortium is dedicated to enhancing the diversity of future scientific communities and sharing our science with a broader audience. Please describe how you, based on your personal background and life experiences (including social, cultural, familial, educational, or other opportunities or challenges) will contribute to this mission during and after participation in a Keck research project.

Gateway Project Essays:

  1. Describe your personal goals for participating in this summer research REU program.
  2. How would participation in this summer REU research program help you meet your academic and career goals as you currently envision them?
  3. What strengths (academic and non-academic) would you bring to a Keck Geology project that will contribute to its success?

Focused and Frontier Project Essays:

  1. Describe your academic, career, and personal goals and how participating in a Keck Geology REU program will help you meet those goals.
  2. Describe the areas of research in the geosciences that interest you most and indicate your preference for working in office, lab, or field settings.
  3. What strengths (academic and non-academic) would you bring to a Keck Geology project that will contribute to its success?
  4. Would you be an enthusiastic participant in your second or third choice project? If so, list the names of the on-campus research advisors for these projects and indicate if they agreed to work with you if you are selected for that project.

The application period closes February 15, 2017 at 23:59:59 Pacific Standard Time. All application materials including faculty recommendations and research advisor consent forms are due at this time. Your online application can be updated or modified at any time until the deadline.

Link to Online Application Form

For questions about the application process, contact Dr. Cameron Davidson ( or Dr. Karl Wirth (