The North American Chapter of the
International Geosynthetics Society


Student Members

2023 Testing Innovation Fellowship Call for Applicants

We are pleased to announce the call for the second round of Testing Innovation Fellowship awards. The program aims to transition geosynthetics-related research into ASTM International (ASTM) standards and increase student engagement in our professional organizations. The fellowship program is jointly supported by the Geosynthetic Institute (GSI), the North America chapter of the International Geosynthetic Society (IGS-NA), and ASTM International Committee D35 on Geosynthetics. The program aligns with the combined missions of GSI, IGS-NA, and ASTM to develop and transfer knowledge, geosynthetic technologies, and testing standards to positively impact education, public health and safety, consumer confidence, and overall quality of life.

Learn more about the 2022 fellowship awards


  • Fellows will be awarded at least $500 per year, over a maximum three-year period. Up to five fellows may be supported concurrently in any given year.
  • Within the award period, each fellow must:
    • Send in a brief annual report (not later than Nov. 30th) of the project status. After approval through the review committee, the $500 grant will be awarded during the 1st quarter of the next year.
    • Prepare a draft of either a new ASTM standard or a substantially revised version of an existing standard, with oversight from their research advisor or relevant supervisor (by December 15th of the final fellowship year)
    • Present the new/revised standard to the appropriate ASTM committee or the review committee supervisor(s) (latest during the first ASTM meeting after the fellowship program – typically in January or February).

The fellow will be paired with a D35 mentor to provide input for drafting a standard.


To apply for the fellowship, the applicant must be:

(1) A current student pursuing a bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree at a college/university
(2) A current member of both ASTM International Committee D35 and IGS-NA. NOTE: Student memberships are free for each organization!


Applicants may not submit multiple applications under this announcement. The application requirements include:

  • A brief (2-page maximum) description of the test method being utilized in the research and how the student envisions the method would support development of a new ASTM International standard or significantly revise an existing standard or standards.
  • The test method development must align with the mission and goals of the supporting organizations and be directly or indirectly related to the use of geosynthetics in relevant practice
  • A letter of recommendation from an advisor, direct supervisor, or department head

SUBMIT APPLICATIONS as a single PDF via email to, ATTN Dr. Kristin Sample-Lord. Please use an email subject line of “Fellowship Application for [insert last name]“.


The current timeline for Round 2 of applications:

  • Application due date: 16 December 2022
  • Announcement of awardees: 25 January 2023
  • Fellowship starting date: February 2023 (disbursement of award)

Note: If a grant recipient changes their fellowship eligibility status or decides to drop out of the fellowship program, the Testing Innovation Fellowship organizers must be informed immediately in writing. A payback of the fellowship award is only necessary if the termination occurs before June 1 in the year in which a fellowship has been granted.

Gary Torosian, ASTM International Committee D35 Chair
Ben Leshchinsky, IGS-NA President-Elect
George Koerner, GSI Director

IGS-NA Student Research Showcase in Kansas City

IGS North America and the Geosynthetic Materials Association (GMA) are pleased to announce the Student Research Showcase to be held during Geosynthtetics Conference 2023. This poster competition is intended to highlight the work of students in geosynthetics while offering an opportunity to present on the show floor during the Tuesday lunch break. This is a great chance to show what you’ve got, and have some fun too!

Learn More & Submit

Key Dates

  • September 12: Call for abstracts for studen poaster competition
  • November 15: Last day to submit abstracts for consideration
  • December 9: Invitations to present a poster at the conference will be issued.
  • January 13: Final day to submit an electronic copy (PDF) of your designed poster.
  • February 7: Poster Presentation Session takes place


  • 1st Place – USD $500 + first choice of full registration to GeoAmericas 2024 or Geotechnical Frontiers 2025
  • 2nd Place – USD $300 + full registration to GeoAmericas 2024 or Geotechnical Frontiers 2025 (remaining conference after 1st place winner selection.)
  • 3rd Place – USD $200

Winners will also be highlighted in the GeoWatch section of Geosynthetics magazine. Cash awards and conference registration offers are sponsored by IGS North America and the Geosynthetic Materials Association. Awards will be issued only to the lead author/presenter of the winning posters. Conference registrations do not have cash value and may not be exchanged for any cash considerations. Future registrations are not transferable. Students do not still need to be studying in 2024/2025 in order to accept future registrations.

Get full guidelines and presentation information here

Students selected to present will be notified by 9 December 2022.

All students invited to present posters at Geosynthetics Conference 2023 will be given free access to the conference February 5 – 7!

Also, all student authors and co-authors based in the US and Canada will be given IGS North America student memberships for the duration of their engineering studies and be invited to participate in other geosynthetics-related grant and paper competitions offered by the International Geosynthetics Society and IGS North America. Students based outside of US/Canada may be eligible for other student membership opportunities with the IGS and its numerous chapters around the world.

Please contact Barbara Connett at with any questions.