Geology and Geography Program at Georgia Southern

Wei Tu, Geology and Geography, Georgia Southern University

1. The overarching goal of your program (why it exists)

The Geology and Geography programs support the Core Curriculum by providing students a deep understanding of the variety and complexity of the Earth's geologic, environmental, cultural, political, and socioeconomic systems and their interactions. In addition, both the Geology and Geography programs at GSU function as a key element in promoting the concept and practice of sustainability. The programs offer curriculum fundamental to sustainability studies, including natural resource conservation, water (hydrogeology), and human aspects of global sustainability.

2. The strengths of the design of your program, including what you think is most valuable about it:

Our program design has two emphases: 1) understanding the variety and complexity of the Earth's physical systems (e.g., geologic, environmental) and human (e.g., cultural, political, and socioeconomic) systems and their interactions, 2) applying geospatial technologies on geological and geographic problems. In addition, the design of a Master of Science degree in Applied Geography (pending approval by Board of Regents) has a focus on preparing students engage in sustainability research and outreach using cutting-edge geospatial technologies.

3. One or more of the challenges of implementing and running your program:

Problems related to program implementation are mostly cultural.

The culture of SE Georgia has not in the past included ideas of sustainability and this is an obstacle to overcome.

4. A brief summary of how the program prepares students for their future careers:

The program provides students with, theory, content, and geospatial tools for success in research, outreach, and other sustainability-related activities and careers. This is done via integrative curriculum and an emphasis on field work and, internship, geospatial technologies including GIS, Remote Sensing, and Spatial Analysis.