Earth and Environmental Sciences
Majors & Minors
A multi-disciplinary, systems-based approach forms the basis for our undergraduate degree programs. The programs are designed to provide students with the strong science background needed to launch careers and advanced degrees.
Five flexible degree programs encourage specialization in one or more aspects of Earth systems science:
Teaching is hands-on, with state-of-the art laboratories and field trips essential components of the degree program. Undergraduate students are encouraged to participate in faculty research, with opportunities for active participation in data acquisition projects worldwide. Undergraduate students work side-by-side with graduate students and faculty, maximizing the learning and teaching experience. The undergraduate degree programs and research opportunities provide excellent training for graduate studies, as illustrated by our alums holding professorships in major research institutions worldwide. The undergraduate course opens doors to careers in environmental monitoring, public policy, medicine, environmental health studies, geotechnics, natural hazards, petroleum and mineral exploration, and water resources.
The department considers field experience to be a valuable part of geological training and incorporates field trips into the regular schedule of many of the undergraduate courses. Students take excursions within New York and adjoining states or can participate in a course that provides field experience studying active geological processes in California.
Faculty encourage advanced undergraduates to participate in North American and overseas field research programs. Most undergraduates participate in active laboratory research in fields such as geophysics, geochemistry, paleontology, petrology, structural geology, tectonics, seismology, stratigraphy, geodynamics, magneto-stratigraphy, geology, public policy, paleoclimate studies, and environmental geology.
The Undergraduate Student Geological Organization (USGO) is an active student-led organization that provides special field trips, speakers from other universities and colleges, and social events throughout the academic year.