Gamma Theta Upsilon (GTU)

Geography students at Yosemite

Gamma Theta Upsilon (GTU) is The International Geographical Honor Society, which was established in 1928 to advance Geography with special reference to student education and research in colleges and universities. More than 300 chapters have been chartered since its founding. The Lambda Upsilon chapter was chartered at Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC) in 2007, and since that time, its membership, although small in number, has been highly active. Students have taken part regularly in field trips, academic conferences, and the raising of funds for the education of girls in Africa. In 2010, students produced Geography in 8 Minutes or Less, a short film available on YouTube, which offers a brief introduction to the discipline of Geography and the role played by GTU.

In 2013, Lambda Upsilon received distinction as one of only eight chapters to be awarded GTU Honors. It received Honors a second time in 2016. Annually, the GRCC chapter hosts a distinguished geographer, sponsored by the Visiting Geographical Scientist Program, a collaborative effort of the Association of American Geographers and GTU.

Visiting Geographical Scientist Lectures

  • 2009    Leon Yacher. African Americans in New Haven, Connecticut: A Historical Geography.
  • 2010    Marie Price. Immigration in a Global Age: Cities, Ethnicity, and the Politics of Place.
  • 2011    Leon Yacher. Ethnicity, Settlement, Conflict and Reconciliation in Central Asia: A Geographical Perspective.
  • 2012    Kate Swanson. Exploring Gender, Race, Ethnicity, and Childhood in the Andes: A Geographical Perspective.
  • 2013    Rebecca Sheehan. Identity, Tourism, and Racialization in New Orlean’s Jackson Square.
  • 2014    Caroline Faria. Styling a Nation: Fear and Desire in the Southeast Sudanese Beauty Trade.
  • 2015    Marie Price. Diffusion, Deflection and Diversity: A Geographic Perspective on Contemporary Migration.
  • 2016    Maria Fadiman. People and Plants: Conservation of Forests and Cultures.
  • 2017    Karen Culcasi. The Syrian Refugee Crisis: Syrian Women Refugees in Jordan.
    Fair Rebels? Fair Trade in Movement and the Possibilities of Being in Common.
  • 2018    Jonnell Robinson. Points, Lines and People: Connecting People and Place through Community Geography.
  • 2019    Lindsay Naylor.

Stellar GRCC students interested in majoring in Geography or a related field are invited to take part in Lambda Upsilon activities; however, full lifetime membership to GTU is awarded only to those in the upper 35% of their class holding a minimum of a 3.5 GPA in all Geography courses after having completed at least three semesters of full-time college work. Lambda Upsilon members actively engage in geographical research and show a strong record of receiving grants for fieldwork and conference participation, as well as academic scholarships. Among them is the Geography Lives! Field Studies Award, which is awarded periodically to exemplary students for their field research. Conducting research and presenting their findings at academic conferences is expected. Lambda Upsilon members have regularly participated in the annual meeting of the California Geographical Society, as well as regional and national meetings of the Association of American Geographers.
 

Geography Lives! Field Studies Award

  • 2011    Kara Apodaca, Lindsey Harris, Sarah Nusbaum
  • 2012    Kara Apodaca, Lindsey Harris, Sarah Nusbaum, Adrienne Ozinga, Brian Woodin
  • 2013    Nicole Arce, Alyson Mabie
  • 2016    Stacey Murphy, April Shirey

Lambda Upsilon Members’ Academic Conference Presentations

  • 2019. Nicholas Conkle, The Inequality of Voter Representation: A Geographical Perspective on the Electoral College and US Senate, California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Big Bear Lake, CA.
  • 2018. Ryan Mulder, Corporate Colonialism: Higher Education and the Foreign Student Trade, California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Sacramento, CA.
  • 2017. Kara Jueckstock, Tourism in the Caribbean: Utopian Ideal or Dystopian Disaster?  East Lakes Division of the American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, Ypsilanti, MI.
  • 2017. Kara Jueckstock, Cruise Tourism in the Caribbean: A Blessing or a Curse? California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, El Cajon, CA.
  • 2017. April Shirey & Stacey Murphy, Food and Housing Insecurities in Michigan Community Colleges: What can Geography Students do? American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, Boston, MA.
  • 2016. Stacey Murphy & April Shirey. Apathy is Not Acceptable: Taking on Poverty in American Community Colleges. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, San Jose, CA.
  • 2015. Stacey Murphy.  Michigan Science Standards and Global Climate Change Education: Politics, Problems, and Prospects. Michigan Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Grand Rapids, MI.
  • 2015. Stacey Murphy. Global Climate Change Perceptions, the Media, and Higher Education. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Arcata, CA.
  • 2014. Gary Farris. Learning Geography Online: A Student’s Perspective. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Los Angeles, CA.
  • 2013. Alyson Mabie & Nicole Arce. Examining Hispanic Education in Local Communities by Organizing Roundtable Discussions. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, San Luis Obispo, CA.
  • 2013. Alyson Mabie & Heather Pribble. Hispanic Education in Western Michigan. GRCC Race, Ethnicity, and Identity Conference, Grand Rapids, MI.
  • 2012. Kara Apodaca, Lindsey Harris, & Sarah Nusbaum. Sustainability in the Face of Globalization: A Community College Study Abroad in South Africa. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Davis, CA.
  • 2012. Adrienne Ozinga and Brian Woodin. Integrating Field Studies of Local Grocery Stores in the World Regional Geography Curriculum. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Davis, CA.
  • 2012. Kara Apodaca, Lindsey Harris, Sarah Nusbaum, Adrienne Ozinga, & Brian Woodin. Field Studies in Geography at GRCC: Ethnicity and Food in Western Michigan and Searching for Understanding in South Africa. GRCC Race, Ethnicity, and Identity Conference, Grand Rapids, MI.
  • 2011. Megan Hornyak & April Kibby. Putting Learning into Action: Making a Difference for Girls and Women in LDCs on an American College Campus. California Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Bishop, CA.
  • 2011. Megan Hornyak & April Kibby. Women’s Lives in Rural Africa, GRCC Race, Ethnicity, and Identity Conference, Grand Rapids, MI.
  • 2011. Megan Hornyak & April Kibby. Where the Water Meets the Sky. GRCC Race, Ethnicity, and Identity Conference, Grand Rapids, MI.
  • 2010. Amanda Colegrove, Megan Hornyak, Brandi Glaske, & Nathan Krings. The Career and Educational Benefits of Joining Gamma Theta Upsilon and the AAG, East Lakes Division of the Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Grand Rapids, MI.
  • 2010. Amanda Colegrove. Current Legislation and Methods of Fighting Human Trafficking in Central America, Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Washington, DC.
  • 2009. Amanda Colegrove. Human Trafficking Patterns in Central America, West Lakes Division of the Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, St. Paul, MN.

Lambda Upsilon Presidents have played a special role in guiding the chapter’s achievements each year. That being said, the dedication of Lambda Upsilon members overall has been notable, and awards are presented to those members that have demonstrated leadership, service, and global citizenship. The Leadership Award is presented to a Lambda Upsilon officer in recognition of exemplary transformational leadership.  The Academic Service Award is presented to a Lambda Upsilon member in recognition of valuable contributions to the discipline of Geography, evidenced by service to the academic community. The Global Citizenship Award is presented to Lambda Upsilon members in recognition of valuable contributions to global citizenship, evidenced by scholarship and service.

Lambda Upsilon Presidents

  • 2007    Ben Gerlofs
  • 2008    Cadey Segard
  • 2009    Amanda Colegrove
  • 2010    Amanda Colegrove
  • 2011    Megan Hornyak
  • 2012    Brian Woodin
  • 2013    Alyson Mabie
  • 2014    Gary Farris
  • 2015    Stacey Murphy
  • 2016    Stacey Murphy
  • 2017    April Shirey
  • 2018    Sydney Doornbos/Ryan Mulder
  • 2019    MaryAnne Flier

Lambda Upsilon Leadership Award

  • 2010    Amanda Colegrove
  • 2011    Megan Hornyak
  • 2012    Kara Apodaca
  • 2013    Alyson Mabie
  • 2016    Stacey Murphy
  • 2017    April Shirey

Lambda Upsilon Academic Service Award

  • 2010    Amanda Colegrove, Megan Hornyak
  • 2011    Brandi Glaske, Megan Hornyak, Nathan Krings
  • 2012    Kara Apodaca, Lindsey Harris, Sarah Nusbaum, Adrienne Ozinga, Brian Woodin
  • 2013    Nicole Arce, Alyson Mabie
  • 2015    Hannah Cluley
  • 2016    Stacey Murphy, April Shirey
  • 2017    Kara Jueckstock, April Shirey
  • 2019    MaryAnne Flier

Lambda Upsilon Global Citizenship Award

  • 2010    Amanda Colegrove
  • 2011    Megan Hornyak
  • 2012    Kara Apodaca, Lindsey Harris, Sarah Nusbaum, Adrienne Ozinga, Brian Woodin
  • 2013    Nicole Arce, Alyson Mabie
  • 2016    Stacey Murphy, April Shirey
  • 2017    Kara Jueckstock, April Shirey
  • 2019    MaryAnne Flier

Lambda Upsilon Academic Distinction

  • 2019    Nicholas Conkle, MaryAnne Flier, Grace Hendrian


Further information on GTU can be found at: http://www.gammathetaupsilon.org/
Students interested in Lambda Upsilon are invited to contact Dr. DeVivo, the chapter sponsor, at: mdevivo@grcc.edu