Geoenvironmental Science & Sustainability, MS

New environmental challenges develop daily. The Master of Science in Geoenvironmental Studies and Sustainability program creates resilient professionals equipped to tackle those challenges. Our classes, field work, and internships produce graduates dedicated to creating real world solutions. The program has a passionate track record of bridging the gap between physical science, social science, natural science, and sustainability to develop broadly trained employees.

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What Will I Learn?

You can expect to develop research methods of proper field and lab data collection, data analysis and communication skills. You will further enhance geotechnical skills (e.g. GIS), continue the mastery of environmental knowledge related to the geosciences and acquire an understanding of professional conduct and responsibility.

After an introductory course in research methods, students can concentrate on surficial geologic processes, hydrology and water resources, land use planning, applied climatology and geographic information systems science.

What Kinds of Experiences Could I Have?

You will be exposed to more in-depth study of the environment through smaller class sizes and direct research with a professor. You can participate in local and regional field trips, as well conduct field research with state-of-the art technology involving stream discharge, shallow geophysics, weather stations, data loggers, GPS units and drones. Graduate students also have the opportunity to join Gamma Theta Upsilon (GTU), the International Geography Honor Society which often involves additional activities outside of the regular course structure.

What Types of Careers Could I Get With This Degree?

Geoenvironmental studies and sustainability graduates enter jobs in the public and private sectors. Careers in state and federal government agencies often include departments of environmental protection and conservation, geological surveys and county and township planning agencies. In the private sector, graduates find employment with geotechnical engineering firms and land use planning and development companies. Some students pursue a more academic route by applying to a Ph.D. program and furthering their education.

The department has a long history, with a far-reaching alumni network, that provides graduates with a greater opportunity for employment upon graduation.


Geoenvironmental Science & Sustainability, M.S. Degree Plan

Full-Time (30 Credits)

First Year

Fall Semester: 9 Credits


Spring Semester: 9 Credits

  • GEO 4XX or 5XX - Elective Credits: 3 
  • GEO 5XX - Elective Credits: 3
  • GEO 5XX - Elective Credits: 3


Summer Semester: 3 Credits


Second Year

Fall Semester: 9 Credits


Planning Notes for all students:

  1. 30 total credits required
  2. Students must take a minimum of 18 credits at the 500 level, including GEO 503 
  3. Students may take a maximum of 12 credits at the 400-level for credit toward the M.S. degree.
  4. Students must take a minimum of 3 credits of geotechniques courses at either the 400 or 500 levels.
  5. Students must complete a thesis (6 credits) OR a one semester research project (3 credits) and internship (3 credits)
  6. Students must take and pass the departmental practical exam upon earning 18 credits.
  7. Students can being in any semester or term, including, fall, spring, winter or summer.