Earth and environmental sciences is the integration of chemistry, biology, and physics applied to Earth and planetary systems.

Wind, water, earthquakes, volcanoes, and human activities constantly modify Earth. Global systems studies probe the processes that form and modify the planet, from cycling of water and human interactions, to magmatism and faulting at plate boundaries, as well as recycling of plates within the convecting mantle.

Understanding these systems requires measurements of our planet’s present-day structure, as well as records since its formation 4.5 billion years ago. This multi-disciplinary, systems-based approach forms the basis for our undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

Department Goals

As a department, we strive to:

  • Advance fundamental scientific understanding of the Earth system in the past, present, and future
  • Communicate this understanding to our students and the general public
  • Train the next generation of earth and environmental scientists
  • Maintain a high level of excellence in research and teaching
  • Act with integrity in all our of scholarly endeavors
  • Create a supportive, respectful, and inclusive environment in the classroom, laboratory, and field