Welcome to the Department of Geography!

Mountain Geography, Community and Environmental Planning, and Cartography and Geographic Information Science are the three pillars of our programs. They build on our special location in a world-class mountain environment, and our long-term commitments to planning and to GIS. These pillars are grounded and mutually supported by the complementarity in the expertise of our faculty.

With seven tenure-track faculty, two lecturers, and one staff, we serve 20 graduate students and 90 undergraduate majors in Geography, numerous students in interdisciplinary majors and allied fields, as well as the General Education Curriculum.

Mountain Geography

Mountain Geography provides a scientific understanding of mountain environments in spatial context and with attention to the physical and human systems in mountainous regions. Regional foci are the Rocky Mountains in the U.S.A., and the Altai, Hindu Kush-Karakoram-Himalaya, Pamir, and Tien Shan mountains in "High Asia". Specializations are in paleo-environments, environmental change, glaciers, periglacial, geomorphology, environmental rehabilitation, environmental hazards, and water resources. Students can focus on mountains courses in pursuit of a B.A. or a B.S. in Geography, or an interdisciplinary Mountain Studies Minor.

Community and Environmental Planning

Theory and principles of Community and Environmental Planning (CEP) set out to achieve ethical, inclusive, healthy, and sustainable human-environment interactions. They are at the core of our planning curriculum. We offer options in CEP at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Courses are in planning principles and processes, environmental planning, community analysis, transportation planning, water policy, sustainable cities, rural economic geography, human-environment impacts, and more.

Cartography and Geographic Information Science

The knowledge and application of Cartography and Geographic Information Science (CGIS) build strong skills in geo-visualization, a sound understanding of geospatial analysis, and a solid footing for geographical research or professional practice. We offer a Certificate in GIS Sciences and Technologies at the undergraduate or post-baccalaureate level, and a graduate-level option in Cartography and GIS. Courses include Introduction to Cartographic and GIS, GIS Application, Raster GIS and Image Analysis, Spatial Analysis, and more.

Our Commitments

As scientists and scholars, we are committed to conceive and prosecute research programs that advance geographic understanding and improve public welfare

As teachers, we are committed to curricula that foster awareness of environmental issues and provide the theoretical understanding and technical skills necessary for professional success.

In our service, we are committed to maintaining and enhancing the academic, scientific, and professional enterprises, at all levels, and to educate the public through informal and formal outreach programs.