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Geoenvironmental Science & Sustainability, MS

Shippensburg University’s Master of Science in Geoenvironmental Science and Sustainability prepares students for professional careers across a range of applied disciplines. This program provides options for students to build capacity in environmental science, natural resources management, sustainability, and state-of-the-art techniques used in environmental assessment and monitoring.

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What Will I Learn?

Students can complete this 30-credit degree in approximately one-and-a half years of full-time study (part-time enrollment also welcome). The program prepares students for professional careers addressing environmental management, monitoring and assessment, spatial technologies (Geographic Information Systems), and social-economic-environmental sustainability. Real-world experience is provided via professional internships, faculty-guided research, field work, and applied projects in the region.

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.

Building a sustainable future

Internship Opportunities

  • US Geological Survey
  • Susquehanna River Basin Commission
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • National Audubon Society
  • Natural Resource Conservation Service
  • Environmental and GIS consulting firms
  • National and state parks
  • County planning commissions
  • Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
  • Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection

What Types of Careers Could I Get With This Degree?

Employers need broadly trained environmental scientists who can bridge the gap between physical science (geology, hydrology, climate), social science (geography, land use, economics), natural systems, and sustainability.

Career Paths

  • Consulting in environmental sciences
  • Government agencies (from local to international)
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Land use and civil planning
  • Sustainability specialist
  • Conservation practitioner

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.

Contact the Geography & Earth Science Department

104 Shearer Hall, 1871 Old Main Drive, Shippensburg, PA 17257 Phone: 717-477-1685 Fax: (717) 477-4029