Geoscience is the study of our planet, its lithosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere. Geoscientists use their expertise to monitor changes in the environment, gain a greater understanding of our natural world, predict and evaluate how human activities may contribute to environmental change, and manage Earth’s resources. The study of geoscience provides strong preparation for a variety of careers in government, industry and academia, including environmental consulting; weather forecasting; natural hazards impact assessment; natural resource management; environmental law; petroleum exploration; science teaching; science journalism; and research in geology, hydrology, climatology, and meteorology.

The Geoscience Department offers a variety of courses spanning areas of geology, hydrology, and atmospheric science. In addition to taking formal courses, most geoscience students undertake undergraduate research through independent study and honors courses or as internships. Course instruction and research are strongly augmented by fieldwork in the Finger Lakes region, as well as other locations around the world.

Student Resources

Student Profile: Bethany Kharrazi '21

Bethany Kharrazi '21

Major: Geoscience
Minor: English

“It’s really nice to apply my knowledge from the classroom in a hands-on setting. When I first came to HWS, the idea of conducting research seemed so hard and daunting. Now that I had the opportunity to do it with a great professor, I can definitely see myself doing it for the rest of my life.”

Meet Our Faculty

Through field-based coursework and research collaborations with the Geoscience faculty, you will gain exciting new knowledge from experts in the discipline. Scroll below to meet our team of scientists, scholars, innovators and above all, dedicated teachers.

Geoscience News

Dwyer ’23 Named NOAA Hollings Scholar

Fri, 30 Apr 2021

Dwyer Alex“Alex has great intuition and gives maximum effort when it comes to developing understanding. I continue to be impressed by her dedication to her academics, as well as her involvement within our campus community,” says Professor of Geoscience Neil Laird. “She has consistently excelled in her academics regardless of topic; however, I think she is a natural at synthesizing complex scientific topics and interrelated concepts of Earth and environmental systems. She certainly shows signs of the abilities needed to obtain a graduate degree and become an accomplished scientist.”

Kotcher Family Supports Geoscience Department

Fri, 23 Apr 2021

Geo Science2The family of geoscience major Jacob Kotcher ’20 gives back to the department through summer research and equipment funding. Jacob Kotcher ’20 dabbled in several disciplines during his first semesters…

Inaugural STEM Scholars Inducted

Fri, 09 Apr 2021

STEM Scholars  KColton-0163HWS welcomed the first cohort of STEM Scholars this month, celebrating the launch of the new program supporting racially and ethnically underrepresented scholars in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. In…

More Geoscience News

Spotlight: Recent Grad

Recent Grad

Jonas Toupal '19

Current Position: Earth and Environmental Science PhD Candidate, University of Pennsylvania

Current Location: Philadelphia, Pa.

Majors: Geoscience and Planetary Science

View Full Profile

Sample Courses

Class Complete Course List

Intro to Meteorology
The influence of weather and climate affect our daily activities, our leisure hours, transportation, commerce, agriculture, and nearly every aspect of our lives. Take an in-depth look at many of the fundamental aspects of the atmosphere needed to understand severe weather and factors influencing climate.