Do you enjoy the outdoors? Do you sometimes daydream about how mountains and volcanoes form or how planets form? Do you wonder about the origin of our natural resources, from water to oil to ore deposits, but at the same time, worry about our environment and what we can do to build for a more sustainable world? Do you want to learn about our past, from the oceans to the atmosphere to the biosphere and the crust? As Earth scientists, we combine everything one can learn from math, physics, chemistry, and biology with basic observations in the field or laboratory. Some of us study how earthquakes rupture and how their waves propagate through the Earth. Others use sedimentary strata to investigate past climate, the evolution of life, the rise and fall of ancient civilizations, and the production of various natural resources. There are also those of us who examine rocks and structures in the field or in laboratory experiments to reconstruct the geologic history of our planet. We are also found pushing the boundaries in analytical instrumentation to make high precision measurements on the composition of different parts of our planet, including living organisms. We work from the nano-scale to the scale of super-sized exoplanets and beyond.
So if you want to understand your place in the solar system by combining the physical and biological sciences with field observations, cutting edge laboratory measurements, or high end computation, this is the department for you. With our high faculty to student ratio, our students have easy access to potential mentors. Many of our undergraduates are involved in research. Many of our classes have field trips, ranging from the western United States to places far away, such as Chile, Turkey, Cuba, Spain, to name a few. Thus, students in our department have the unique opportunity to combine what one learns in the classroom with real-life experience. Most importantly, our students are instilled with the appreciation that the Earth works as a complex, interconnected system, a philosophy that benefits are graduates wherever they go in the future. Our students have gone on to academia, the energy industry, environmental consulting, public policy, medical school, high school teaching, business and much more.
More information can be found here.