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Undergraduate Programs

The Earth and Environmental Sciences Department is a collection of students and scientists using one or a combination of chemistry, biology, and physics to unravel the systematics of Earth and planetary systems.

Wind, water, ice, earthquakes, volcanoes, and human activities constantly modify Earth's surface and its atmosphere. As Earth and Environmental scientists, we probe the processes that form and modify the planet. Our activities span: cycling of water from land to oceans; human interactions and hazards; magmatism and faulting at plate boundaries; ice sheet retreat and sea level rise. This knowledge informs water, mineral, and energy resource evaluation and management, natural hazard mitigation, air and water quality, coastal restoration, site remediation and engineering, and many other fields.

Understanding the global impact of these systems requires measurements of present-day and past Earth structure, and solar and planetary processes. Our undergraduate and graduate degree programs take a multi-disciplinary, systems-based approach, and include geochemical, geophysical, geological, atmospheric, geochronological, biogeochemical, GIS, and oceanographic analyss.

The department offers a BS degree in both Geology and Environmental Earth Science. Each program combines field investigations with laboratory experiments and theoretical studies to prepare our students to understand the physical, chemical and environmental processes that govern the Earth.

Students who enjoy working outdoors and have a good aptitude in mathematics, physics, computer science or chemistry, can find a rewarding career in the Earth Sciences. Our students have the opportunity to learn and work with faculty who are research oriented, committed to their profession, and known throughout the world.

The department offers a minor in both Geology and Environmental Earth Science.