Graduate Application Assistance Program (GAAP)

GAAP is a free mentorship program, created and operated by current CSU Geoscience graduate students. By participating in this program, you can get advice on a wide range of topics including how to connect with professors before applying, write a personal statement, or how to ask for letters of recommendation. Additionally, volunteer mentors can offer guidance on the technicalities of the application process.  

Anyone who intends to apply to the CSU Department of Geosciences is welcome to sign up for mentorship and we encourage applicants from under-represented and non-traditional academic backgrounds to use this resource.  

Mentorship will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis from October 1, 2023, to December 15, 2023. We encourage you to indicate your interest in mentorship early as we have limited mentors. We look forward to assisting you with the application process! 

Need more information? Email us!

Independence Statement

This program is independent of the CSU Department of Geosciences admissions process. Any participants will remain anonymous from faculty and staff. The views of the graduate student volunteers are their own and do not represent the views of the Department of Geosciences at Colorado State University. Participation in this program does not guarantee admission to the Department of Geosciences at Colorado State University. 

Our Mentors:

Victoria Arnold

Victoria is a second year M.S. student studying the geochemistry of legacy mine waste products. Prior to grad school, she worked outside of industry for two years. Outside of work, she loves to crochet, watch movies, and hike.

Tomalika Biswas

Tomalika is a second year M.S. student working with Derek Schutt in the seismology research group. Her research focuses on using seismic tomography specifically ambient noise tomography to map western Canada and find out the geometry of lithosphere in Mechanzie Mountain. Prior to graduate school in the USA, she also finished her 1st M.Sc in Geotechnical Engineering and worked several labs in Bangladesh. Outside of Geophysics, she loves to recite Bengali Poem and Classical Dance.

Ally Detre

Ally is a first-year MS student working with Dr. Daniel McGrath in the Cryospheric Sciences Research Group. She is planning on studying and evaluating changes in seasonal snowpack by utilizing various remote sensing methodologies. In her free time, she enjoys reading, skiing, running, and listening to new music.

Katie Larkin

Katie is a first-year masters student working with Dr. Ellen Wohl in the Fluvial Geomorphology Group. Her research focuses on understanding the geomorphological effects of post-wildfire river restoration. She graduated from Washington & Lee University with a degree in Geology in 2022 and has a year of experience in environmental consulting.

Anna Marshall (she/her)

Anna is in her second year of a Ph.D. in the fluvial geomorphology research group. Her research broadly focuses on physical processes acting along river corridors, including biophysical interactions.  

Connor Mertz (he/him)

Connor (he/him) is a first year M.S. student working with Sara Rathburn in the Fluvial Geomorphology lab. His research focuses on the restoration prioritization of several Upper Colorado tributaries in Rocky Mountain National Park. Prior to graduate school, Connor spent several years farming and working for a Conservation District in Montana.

Elisa McGhee

Elisa McGhee is a Ph.D. student studying the seismology and geophysics of coupled earth systems with Rick Aster. Her graduate work focuses on understanding the oceanic controlling mechanisms of ice shelf fracture using seismic data. Her background includes more than 15 years as an Air Force pilot and faculty member in the Department of Physics at the U.S. Air Force Academy. She enjoys gardening, trail running, electronic dance music, and her border collie, Mighty.

Ana María Pérez

Ana is an international student and came to do my PhD from Colombia! Her research project is focused on the landscape evolution in southern Italy. Besides academia, she love sewing, crafts, traveling, and learning about other cultures and languages!

Miriam Primus

Miriam is a MS student studying deformation in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains with Dr. John Singleton. Prior to graduate school, she worked as an intern at the USGS. She grew up in Denver and enjoys swimming, biking, and exploring Colorado trails in her free time.

Billy Stansfield

Billy Stansfield is a second-year master’s student studying Hydrogeology with Dr. Michael Ronayne. His research interests generally include groundwater flow modeling and forecasting aquifer response to pumping. For his master’s thesis he is creating a numerical model to help understand the long-term impacts of groundwater pumping from a high-altitude aquifer in southern Peru.

Shayla Triantafillou (she/her)

Shayla is a M.S. student studying channel and floodplain response to wildfire disturbance with Dr. Ellen Wohl. Prior to graduate school, Shayla worked for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. When not studying fluvial geomorphology, she likes mountain biking and trail running.

Lucas Zeller (he/him)

Lucas is a PhD student working with Dr. Daniel McGrath in the Cryospheric Sciences Research Group. His research uses satellite remote sensing, machine learning, and geophysical tools to study how mountain glaciers (and the cryosphere more broadly) are changing and how those changes are linked to climate change. 

Currently a graduate student in the department and interested in volunteering as a mentor?