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Group of Gemstone students outside, wearing matching purple tshirts

Prospective Students

The Gemstone Honors Program at the University of Maryland is a unique interdisciplinary four-year research program for selected undergraduate honors students of all majors in Honors College. Under guidance of faculty mentors and Gemstone staff, teams of students design, direct and conduct significant research, often but not exclusively exploring the interdependence of science and technology with society. Gemstone students are members of a living-learning community comprised of fellow students, faculty and staff who work together to enrich the undergraduate experience. This community challenges and supports the students in the development of their research, teamwork, communication and leadership skills. In the fourth year, each team of students presents its research in the form of a thesis to experts, and the students complete the program with a citation and a tangible sense of accomplishment.

Admissions Process Overview

The Gemstone Director and Associate Director coordinate Gemstone invitations by working through the Honors College with the university Undergraduate Admissions office. Gemstone does not offer scholarships for students. Scholarship information can be found at Scholarships for Undergraduate Students. For best consideration, students must apply for admission to the University by the priority deadline, typically November 1, for the following fall.

The Gemstone staff reviews a list of Honors College invitees who have expressed a strong interest in the Gemstone Honors Program. Because the Gemstone Honors Program is multidisciplinary, students are selected for invitation across academic disciplines. Students invited to Gemstone have:

  • very strong academic credentials;
  • demonstrate societal concerns in their admission essay and resume;
  • show involvement in team related and other co-curricular activities; and
  • demonstrate intellectual inquisitiveness and interest in research.

If you are a newly admitted Honors College student, please visit our admitted students page for more information! Contact Gemstone at or at 301.458.0784 with questions regarding the admission process.

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