Department of Geological, Environmental, and Planetary Sciences Mission Statement

Geology is an interdisciplinary science with close relationships to physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics. Problem solving in geology requires a broad approach that involves application of all natural sciences to study the Earth. 

The Department of Geological, Environmental, and Planetary Sciences at Geneseo has structured its program so that majors are exposed to all aspects of geology: earth materials, surficial processes, internal processes, geobiology and earth history, and geochemistry. As a result of this broad exposure, geology students have been provided with the tools to solve a variety of problems, ranging from the search for mineral or energy sources to the improvement of the quality of groundwater and related environmental issues. 

The Department faculty are committed to maintaining a flexible program that is not overly influenced by short-term trends dictated by transient external factors. The Department serves a dual role on campus – it provides a variety of science courses for the general student population and offers major programs for those who intend to pursue careers in the Earth Sciences. In these two capacities, the faculty attempts to:

  • Develop in students an understanding of, and appreciation for, the dynamics, history and finite resources of the Earth;
  • Foster in students an awareness of the interdisciplinary nature of studies of the Earth and the processes that affect its environment; and
  • Cultivate in students the ability to make accurate and systematic observations, and draw conclusions about natural phenomena by deductive reasoning.

In addition, the faculty strives to prepare students for graduate studies in geological, environmental, and planetary sciences and related disciplines as well as for professional positions that involve the application of scientific methodology to earth systems and materials. Over the past 15 years, approximately 70% of Geneseo's majors in geological sciences have continued on to graduate programs.

The departmental goals include:

  • To increase opportunities for student learning that supplement formal coursework
  • To review and, where appropriate, to strengthen academic and support services for all students
  • To encourage interaction among students, faculty, staff and administration beyond the classroom and office
  • To increase student awareness of international, multi-cultural and global issues
  • Provide leadership, expertise, and services for local and regional groups
  • To enhance intellectual excellence through honors programs and other enrichment programs
  • To recognize in tangible ways those students who make significant contributions to the College through their leadership