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Department of Environmental Earth Science

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Environmental Earth Science (EES) students receive a foundation in environmental geoscience that draws upon classroom, online, laboratory and field-based experiences. Students develop an understanding of the natural world, its materials, processes and geologic records of environmental change, and associated energy and sustainability issues. EES majors prepare for careers or graduate studies in geoscience and energy studies.

Coursework and other educational experiences help students:

  • identify and analyze applied problems
  • use scientific approaches to formulate and test hypotheses
  • collect, analyze and interpret data
  • apply quantitative and computer-based techniques
  • present findings in written and oral formats
  • demonstrate the relevance of geosciences to society
Dr. Dickson Cunningham
Department Chair
Science Building Rm. 264
(860) 465-4321
Stephen Nathan
Assistant Chair
Science Building Rm. 262
(860) 465-5579
Zosia Carlquist
Science Building Rm. 268
(860) 465-4317
Students  & Professor working a EES tool
Students  & Professor working a EES tool
Students and professor posing for photo
Students  & Professor working a EES tool
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Programs of Study

  • Environmental Earth Science (EES) students at Eastern receive a broad education in environmental earth science with a strong foundation in geoscience, using classroom, laboratory and field-based learning. The curriculum stresses the materials, processes, and features of the Earth, Earth history and the ways in which earth scientists address scientific, societal and environmental problems. Student pick from three concentrations in Environmental Earth Science, General Earth Science or Sustainable Energy Science. A minor is also available to students in other majors.

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  • The Environmental Health Science minor explores the interrelationship between human health and the environment. The interplay of human activities, natural earth processes and ecological processes influences human health and the quality of the environment.

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  • Students in the Geographic Information Systems minor learn to store, analyze and display spatially oriented data to improve decision-making. Environmental scientists use GIS for applications such as environmental impact analysis, hydrological modeling and biodiversity studies.

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  • The Geomorphology minor applies principles of physics, chemistry, hydrology and sedimentology to understand earth surface landscapes. Geomorphologists use computer programs such as GIS to analyze, explain and evaluate the geologic nature of earth surface environments.

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  • The Hydrogeology minor covers aspects of geology, physics, chemistry and mathematics. Students learn about the occurrence, distribution and transport of groundwater, its natural chemical evolution and the behavior of contaminants in groundwater. Contemporary hydrogeologic problems ranging from water supply to land subsidence, groundwater protection and contamination are also covered.

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  • Continued growth of fossil fuel energy consumption is not sustainable indefinitely. A transition to an economy based on renewable energy technologies such as hydroelectric, solar and wind energy is inevitable. Students in the Sustainable Energy Studies minor look at this transition through the perspectives of the natural sciences and the social sciences.

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