Faculty and students in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences study the changes and interactions occurring within the geosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and atmosphere on temporal scales extending from “deep time” (millions and billions of years) to the impact of human activity at the present with spatial scales ranging from microscopic to global. The Department provides high quality learning experiences for students at undergraduate and graduate levels, including preparation for those interested in educational, academic, industry and government careers.
Faculty, students, and alumni provide knowledge and scientifically informed comment at local, regional, and global levels, such as causes and effects of climate change, contaminants in the environment related to human health, natural disasters, environment and resource issues, science education and the search for life throughout our solar system. The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Michigan State serves as a resource for private and public enterprises, teachers and government agencies at all levels.
The department is small enough to be a vital and close-knit community of graduate students, faculty, and undergraduates, and big enough to offer world-class research opportunities in virtually all areas of the Geosciences. Opportunities for both social gathering and cross-fertilization of ideas occur at: our weekly department seminar series brings in researchers from all over the globe to present work from paleontology to tectonics and hydrology; a department coffee break that brings together students and professors for an informal gathering several times each week, and; holiday gatherings, tailgate parties, and other more purely social functions. Our graduates leave the department with a strong network of colleagues and friends at all levels.