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Message from the Chair 

The past year has been successful and rewarding. In addition to the Imperial Barrel Award win and the numerous awards and scholarships achieved by our students and faculty, the Department of Geological Sciences has graduated 23 B.S., 11 Masters and 3 Ph.D. students. Dr. Phil Goodell was awarded the Undergraduate Student Choice Award for Outstanding Teaching. Ana Quevedo and Joseph Sandobal were selected as the Outstanding Undergraduates, and our Outstanding Graduates were Loren Ochoa, Syprose Nyachoti and Nicholas Talavera.

The students ran a very exciting Colloquium this year including 13 talks and 28 posters featuring both graduate and undergraduate research. A new pick-axe statue created by Gabriel Gaytan and donated by Joe Gomez was dedicated at a reception during the Colloquium and it now resides in our lobby.

We have had great contributions in various forms from our alumni especially James Cearley, Larry Franceware, and Joe Smith. UTEP Geological Sciences will have a presence at the Fall 2016 GSA, SEG and AGU meetings, so if you are attending, stop by our booth to say “Hi”. 

We will also welcome two new faculty this Fall – Geochemist/microbiologist Jie Xu and Physical Geologist Hugo Gutierrez-Jurado. These new faculty bring with them expertise we do not currently have so they will increase our educational offerings and research portfolio.

Our goals for the future are to work on several remodeling projects such as graduate student office space and classroom upgrades, evaluate undergraduate and graduate curricula and expand collaborations both within and outside of UTEP. I am excited for UTEP Geological Sciences future, and I hope you will continue to feel at home if you would like to visit and interact with us.

James Kubicki

Degree Programs

The Department of Geological Sciences offers degree programs in both Geological Sciences and Environmental Sciences in conjunction with faculty from the Biological Science and Chemistry departments.

Undergraduate Geoscience contact Joel Gilbert --- Undergraduate Environmental Science contact Maryam Zarei

Geological Sciences Program

Bachelor of Science (B.S) in Geological Sciences with concentration in


     Secondary Education

Master's Degree

     Master's of Science (M.S.) in Geological Sciences

     Master's of Science (M.S.) in Geophysics


     Ph.D. in Geological Sciences

Environmental Sciences Program

Bachelor of Science (B.S) in Environmental Sciences with concentration in





     Secondary Education

Master's Degree

     Master's of Science  (M.S.) in Environmental Science


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Our dedication to teaching remains a core value, and the expanded interactions with other faculty at UTEP and elsewhere will enhance learning experiences for undergraduate and graduate students. We have over 230 undergraduate and graduate students who come to us with tremendously diverse educational backgrounds with a common goal - to increase their proficiency in Earth and environmental science for the betterment of society.

Additionally, we serve non-major students who take our courses in order to broaden the public understanding of the Earth and our environment. The Department’s faculty and staff are contributors to UTEP’s mission of educating today's generation of students. Students are fundamentally essential to our mission and are of critical importance to solve current Earth and environmental problems.