GEM Scholars

Paid Summer Research Projects for American Indian Students
Ge-diba’amawindwaa Anishinaabe-gikinoo’amaaganag Ji-nandagikendamowaad

Through the GEM (Geo-science, Environmental Science, and Meteorology) program, American Indian students receive summer funding to complete research in their home community.

The program, funded by the National Science Foundation and Purdue University, is coordinated by a team of professors from Purdue, BSU and Red Lake Nation College. Together, they work with GEMScholars to plan and complete a summer research project in their community while learning research methods and the value of teamwork and independent research.

How it Works

In the summer, GEMscholars meet with faculty mentors to develop and plan a research project. GEMscholars are then divided into teams to work on their projects throughout the summer. Guidance in the form of meetings, field work, emails and phone calls will come from your mentors, but much of the research will be completed with your team.

During the fall semester, GEMscholars and mentors will travel to Purdue University to present their work at the annual GEMscholar Symposium & Poster Session.

Become a GEMScholar

To qualify, you must:

  • Be an American Indian undergraduate student from BSU, Leech Lake Tribal College, or Red Lake Nation College
  • Pursue a major/minor in a GEM field
  • Have successfully completed at least one year of study
  • Complete an application form and be accepted into the program
  • Attend all mandatory summer workshops held at BSU with the faculty mentors
  • Learn how to design a project, participate in field research, conduct laboratory research, and design a final poster based on your research finding
  • Visit Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana (all expenses paid) in the fall following your summer program,with your fellow GEMscholars and local mentors to present your research results at the GEMscholar Symposium & Poster Session
  • Complete surveys before and after your GEMscholar research experience, participate in focus groups and keep a journal reflecting on your experience.
  • Get paid for being a GEMscholar!

About the GEMScholar Program

The GEMscholar program is a research partnership between Purdue University, Bemidji State University and Red Lake Nation College with a goal to increase the number of Native American students successfully pursuing graduate geoscience degrees.

Two GEMscholar Symposium & Poster Sessions serve as the culmination of the summer projects, providing the GEMscholars an opportunity to present their exciting findings. Both sessions are held in the fall – the first at Purdue University and the second at Red Lake Nation College.

For More Information

If you are interested in becoming a GEMScholar, please contact:

Colette Dahlke
American Indian Resource Center Bemidji State University
(218) 755-2032

The Mentoring Native American Students for Success in Geoscience Graduate Programs project is funded by the National Science Foundation.