BS Environmental Geosciences

Marine Ecology class in the Virgin Islands.

Our Marine Ecology class in the Virgin Islands. Courtesy M. Coffroth.

Environmental Geosciences (EGS) is an interdisciplinary curriculum integrating physical, chemical and biological aspects of the environment and environmental systems.

There is a large (and increasing) demand for scientists with quantitative, interdisciplinary training in environmental sciences to address, mitigate, and manage many complex environmental problems facing society. The program has three specialization tracks: Ecology and the Environment, Water and the Environment, and Environmental Monitoring and Analysis. Environmental Geoscience graduates will have a solid foundation in biological, physical, and natural sciences, mathematics and statistics, and analytic and geospatial techniques, as well as the specialized training necessary for integrated analysis of environmental systems.

Environmental Studies or Environmental Geosciences?

Environmental Geosciences and Environmental Studies sound a lot alike…

We get this question a lot!

They are both great programs with quite a bit of overlap. Environmental Geosciences is a major that is heavy into math and science. Many of our students in this group are very interested in environmental engineering, geographic information systems, pollution, ecological restoration, to name a few. Graduates of this major often work for environmental consultants, government regulation enforcement, health and safety, pollution cleanup, mapping/cartography, and similar careers.

Environmental Studies is more social science based. This program explores policy, grassroots organization, environmental education, sustainability, and outdoor interpretation. This leads these graduates into careers in non-governmental organizations (Audubon, Sierra Club, Niagara Waterkeeper), park rangers, teachers, guides, and in government agencies like the mayor’s office and housing departments working with people on affordable housing and community gardens.

When it comes to coursework, there is a lot of overlap; all but about 10 classes are exactly the same. Either way, the benefit of coming here is the same. The University at Buffalo is the largest public research institute in the state, but our department only has about 250 students in both majors combined. You have instant access to your advisors, all your professors know you and you know them. The EGS and ES students have several organizations that you are encouraged to join and get involved.