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Departments & Programs



SURGE 2014 Cohort at Elkhorn Slough





The application for the SURGE 2015 program is now closed. Thank you to all the applicants and if you missed the deadline, we encourage you to apply next year 2016.

This year, the SURGE program will run from Friday, June 19 through August 15, 2015.



The underlying philosophy of SURGE is to train students by creating a supportive and rigorous work environment. We set high expectations for our scholars, both to prepare them for a potential career in the field of geoscience and engineering, and to ensure that they get the most from their stay at Stanford. Each SURGE scholar is matched with a Stanford faculty member and has the opportunity to work in a research group or laboratory. The scholar is assigned an interesting and challenging project from a broad range of science and engineering topics that are accessible within the eight-week summer period. SURGE also includes workshops on preparing for the GRE, applying to graduate school, and understanding geoscience and engineering careers. The program culminates with a research symposium, where scholars present results from their summer projects to faculty, mentors, and colleagues.



  • SURGE focuses on recruiting graduate students, and therefore targets rising juniors and seniors, and perhaps a few exceptional sophomores. Any student who will add diversity to the population of SES students is eligible to participate.
  • Applicants must be in good academic standing with a GPA of 3.0 or better;
  • Have completed at least two years and have at least one semester remaining of their undergraduate education by the start of the summer program;
  • Attend an accredited public or private college or university in the U.S. or its territories, as recognized by the U.S. Department of Education;
  • Have demonstrated interest and potential to pursue graduate study toward a Master's or PhD degree;
  • Be a documented U.S. citizen, a permanent resident in possession of an alien registration card (I-555), or an international student enrolled in a U.S. undergraduate institution;
  • Be an undergraduate who, by reason of their culture, class, race, ethnicity, background, and life experiences, would add diversity to our Stanford graduate programs in the Earth Sciences. We especially encourage applications from African Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans, Native Americans, and Pacific Islanders.

Academic and Research

  • Listing of current Potential Projects;
  • Guidance/instruction by Stanford faculty, post docs and graduate students;
  • Individual counseling on academic careers and future course recommendations;
  • Possible opportunity to co-author a scientific paper with the faculty mentor;
  • Research use of state-of-the-art laboratories across the Stanford campus; 
  • GRE and college application preparation workshops;
  • Featured research presentations by Stanford faculty, post docs and graduate students;
  • Weekly seminars pertaining to scholars' academic and professional growth;
  • Preparation of an abstract and research paper;
  • Poster presentation at the end of the program.

Departments and Programs


  • Scholar lunches and dinners;
  • Access to campus facilities (library, athletic, and health facilities);
  • Bay Area outings including: San Francisco day trips, Monterey Bay Aquarium, Santa Cruz, movie night, bowling, camping trip, talent show, community service and pizza days;
  • Lunch with mentors and laboratory research groups;
  • Interactive web site for scholars to post their profiles, and to use as a method to keep in contact after the program has ended.


  • $3,000 Stipend;
  • Paid round trip travel expenses;
  • Paid University housing and meal plan;
  • Weekly online surveys to help improve the scholar experience;
  • Health insurance subsidies;
  • Books and supplies subsidies;
  • GRE Preparation



SURGE Calendar of Activities