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Natural Sciences and Mathematics

Earth Science

Why study Earth Science? Are you interested in learning about how our planet formed, what its place is in our solar system and universe, and how it, and its atmosphere, oceans, and life, has changed with time? Do you want to know more about how the natural resources that provide our materials and power our world are formed and how we go about acquiring them? Are you interested in understanding natural hazards and environmental crises and how we as a society can evaluate and mitigate their effects? Earth Science isn’t just the study of rocks; it’s that and a whole lot more. What’s more, there are a multitude of rewarding careers such as in environmental and geological consulting, minerals and energy exploration, and teaching in which you can work routinely on these kinds of problems.

What is the Earth Science program at LCSC? Our program prepares students for the broad range of careers that are available in the earth sciences. The program is flexible, allowing students to emphasize a variety of interests beyond the Earth Science core curriculum including GIS (geographic information systems), environmental science, and hydrology. For students specifically interested in the field of environmental geochemistry, we offer a Geochemistry Emphasis within the Chemistry Major. Those interested in high school science teaching careers can pursue our Earth Science Secondary Education degree. We also offer a Geology Minor for those interested in coupling a background in the earth sciences with another major.

Why study Earth Science at LCSC? We offer small class sizes and strongly individualized instruction. Our business is strictly undergraduate education and our students have the undivided attention of our faculty both in routine coursework and in other opportunities such as internships and research projects. Our location provides an ideal setting for field studies. In Lewiston, Idaho we are surrounded by mountain ranges, volcanic plateaus, and deeply incised river valleys. Our local geology includes metamorphosed Precambrian sedimentary rocks of ancient North America, Paleozoic and Mesozoic volcanic and sedimentary rocks of the accreted Wallowa oceanic island arc, Mesozoic granites of the Idaho batholith, and thick sequences of Cenozoic lava flows of the Columbia River basalts. We have a mild climate in the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley, allowing us to use our surrounding region as an outdoor classroom for most of the academic year.

What can you do with this major once you’ve graduated? To learn more about earth science related careers in general, visit AGI’s workforce brochure. To see what students who have graduated from our Earth Science programs in the last ten years are doing visit the following table. If you are interested in learning more about earth science careers, please make an appointment to talk to one of our earth science faculty.

Class Projects


Student Research


Geology Club