Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Four UGA Students Win National Geographic Internships

Four University of Georgia students in the department of geography have won internships with National Geographic out of only 11 awarded nationally.

Jason Gruba of Martinez and Jesse Oakley of Gainesville won internships to the National Geographic Educational Program. Laura Jones of Athens won an internship to the international edition of National Geographic Magazine. And Cassie Mertzlufft, also of Athens, won an internship to the National Geographic Book Division.

“I think having four UGA interns out of 11 nationally is a real indication of how well prepared UGA geography students are for work at National Geographic,” said George Brook, Merle C. Prunty Jr. Professor, head of the geography department and director of the UGA Luminescence Dating Laboratory. The geography department is in UGA’s Franklin College of Arts and Sciences.

The geography internship program, directed by Robert E. Dulli, deputy to the chairman, is designed for geography and cartography majors at U.S. colleges and universities who are currently in their junior or senior year of academic work, as well as master’s degree students.

The purpose of the program is to furnish students a professional learning experience through participation in various projects aimed at the diffusion of geographic knowledge. Information about this program, which presently accommodates eight to eleven students for each academic term, is sent to heads of geography departments at colleges and universities throughout the United States in late August. The deadline for application materials, for all periods, is in early October for the following year.

“It is also a reflection of the excellent education they have received in the Franklin College and at UGA in general,” said Brook. “Over the course of my career I have seen the caliber of students in geography and at UGA improve year by year, and I think National Geographic is aware of this. One final point is that students in geography are well trained in Geographic Information Science as well as in their main area of interest, making them very useful for a variety of tasks at National Geographic.”

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