The United States Geography Championships was founded in the summer of 2012 as a nationwide competition to test the geography skills of American students and to help foster geography education throughout the United States. The competition aims to reward students who have devoted themselves to studying their world, and its countries and peoples, as a thorough knowledge of geography is essential to being an educated citizen today. Aside from fostering an appreciation of knowledge of our world, the United States Geography Championships is the official qualifying competition for the International Geography Olympiad (aka iGeo), and by competing in it, Varsity Division students will have a chance to become members of the American team to attend iGeo. The 2021 iGeo was held online in August 2021; the members of Team USA were selected through participation in the 2021 USGC Varsity National Championships. The 2022 iGeo will be held online.

The USGC also now qualifies students who finish in the top 50% at the National Championships or who score a 75 or higher on any version of the National Qualifying Exam to take part in the International Geography Championships. IGC is open to students in 4th grade and higher, and is held every two years for a week. The 2022 IGC will be held in Burlington, VT from July 3 – July 10, 2022.

The USGC has been open to all primary and secondary students, regardless of age since its founding. The USGC features six divisions: Varsity, Junior Varsity, 8th Grade, 7th Grade, 6th Grade, and Elementary School. Middle School and Elementary School aged students can also compete in the Junior Varsity Division as well.

The US Geography Championships is organized by International Academic Competitions, which coordinates tournaments and competitions in a variety of subjects for students in over 30 countries around the world. You may also wish to explore USGC’s sister competition which features buzzer-based quiz play, the International Geography Bee.