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Explore Sustainability, the Environment and Earth Sciences

Around the globe and in our backyard, you will study natural and human systems, learn analytical skills, apply experience in the field and meet professionals from one of the fastest-growing career sectors worldwide.
Meet Our Students


Pursue a BA in Sustainability Studies or a BS in Earth and Environmental Science. Choose an area of emphasis to match your interests.


Our interdisciplinary learning environment and facilities support graduate work in Geology, Geography and GIS/Spatial Analysis.


Our research projects span multiple continents and positively impact our state, region, and the world in incalculable ways.

Why study sustainability, the environment and earth sciences at WVU?

Our department is a vibrant academic unit with modernized programs that focus on teaching sustainability through training in the disciplines of Geology and Geography. We are one of the very few programs in the United States that takes a holistic approach to sustainability, meaning that we study and teach the physical science and social science dimensions of global sustainability.

About the Department Welcome from the Chair

Apply Your Knowledge

Whether you are pursuing a BA in Sustainability Studies, a BS in Earth and Environmental Science, or one of our geology and geography minors, you will find many opportunities available to you as an undergraduate student in our department.

Field Camp

Visit the Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming to apply concepts from the classroom and learn how to communicate your findings.

About Field Camp: Field Camp

Internships and Research

Check regularly as we frequently post internship and research opportunities.

Explore Opportunities: Internships & Research

Student Organizations

We offer several student organizations to help you make the most out of your education and to connect with your fellow students.

Read More: Student Organizations

Graduate Studies

You’ve completed your undergraduate study. Now what?

Our department has a broad and extensive research mission in terms of subject matter and geographic reach with numerous funded projects with millions of dollars in awards each year.

Geology Graduate Studies Geography Graduate Studies

News & Social

Academic Transformation FAQs

The Department of Geology and Geography started two new degrees as part of the first round of Academic Transformation in 2021. The two new degrees are a BA in Sustainability Studies and a BS in Earth and Environmental Science.

Current students in the Geology, Geography, and Environmental Geoscience programs can stay in their current major or they can choose to move into one of these new degrees. 

For more information, read our  Frequently Asked Questions.


In the Spotlight

More than students in a class — we are Mountaineers on a mission

View Spotlight for Daniel Price

Daniel Price

“My major at WVU was geology, and here I am going out to the middle of the sea! My hope is to bring the wonders of our oceans to places like West Virginia and open up a whole new world to kids and adults alike.”

View Spotlight for Sam Ocon

Sam Ocon

“I have always loved being outdoors, and fossil hunting just gives me an excuse to be outside. Plus, finding a fossil means that you’re the first being to lay eyes on this organism for millions of years!”

View Spotlight for Bane Clements-Smart

Bane Clements-Smart

“I decided to pursue Sustainability Studies because as the demand for sustainable ways of living and interacting with our environment becomes a more pressing issue, understanding and having experience with implementing these changes is a vital skill.”

Support Our Field Camp

We need your help to lessen the financial burden of attending field camp for students. Field camp provides an incredible opportunity and creates meaningful hands-on experiences that will last a lifetime.

“As geologists we know, the best geologists see the most rocks. Future WVU geologists need our support now.” Dan Billman (1989 MS Geology)

About Field Camp Donate to Field Camp

Research Highlights

A glimpse of research news, projects and activities that span multiple continents and positively impact our state, region, and the world in multiple ways. Learn more about Our Research Areas.

A map of the United States with Political Parties of the senate colors in red, blue or striped.

Red Map, Blue Map With Kenneth C. Martis

In the 1970s and ’80s, geographer Kenneth C. Martis, Emeritus Professor of Geography, mapped every congressional district and color-coded them by political party, going all the way back to the first Congress. Recently his work was featured in the Humanities Magazine, Summer 2023 Edition article "Red Map, Blue Map."

Read the Article Meet Dr. Martis

Male with grey hair and beard dressed in a suit and tie

Mapping a Legacy with Gregory Elmes

After a 35-year career, Professor Emeritus Gregory Elmes aspires to give back to the university that has given him so much. He and wife Jeanne have established a planned gift, the Dr. Gregory and Mrs. Jeanne Elmes Geography Endowment, to support undergraduate geography students in their research endeavors.

Read More in the Eberly Magazine

Female wearing a helmet with headlamp inspects the rocks in a cave.

Caving Culturally with María Pérez

What do caves and human geography have in common?  That’s what María Alejandra Pérez, Associate Professor of Geography at the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, will be considering as she studies “ecologies of participation” in karst regions of Puerto Rico,  supported by a $300,000 grant from the National Science Foundation.

Read Eberly College Article Meet María