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Exploring Geology

Freshman Interest Groups

Exploring Geology

FIG Description:

This FIG is intended for students who have a strong interest in Geology and would like to get an early start on their career.  In this FIG we will take several field trips to explore Wyoming’s amazing geology, which includes rocks from the Earth’s earliest history to our still active Yellowstone super volcano.

This FIG will also introduce the essential realities of living on a dynamic Earth from a geologist’s perspective. We will examine how geologic events and processes (earthquakes, floods, land-slides, volcanic eruptions, and long-term and short-term climate changes) effect our survival, evolution, and adaptation and how our life and civilization are connected to the Earth’s energy cycles. We will also critically examine geo-engineering.

Finally, we will look at the new science of ‘geobiochemistry’, which explores the wonderful nexus between geology and life. In particular, we will become acquainted with how the hydrothermal systems of Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park have led us to a new understanding of life in extreme environments.

Boots on the ground field geology. Students enrolled in the Geology FIG will start the semester by participating in a four-day field trip to Yellowstone National Park. On our way to Yellowstone, this trip will take us through some of Wyoming’s amazing geological features including Wind River Canyon, Heart Mountain, and Grand Teton National Park to name just a few. Students get to move in to the Residence Halls on Thursday, August 29. The trip will occur Friday - Monday, August 30–Sept. 2 (Labor Day).  In addition, we will take several other one-day field trips to local geological settings including the Snowy Range and the Laramie Range.

Please note: Students enrolled in the Exploring Geology FIG should not register for the Fall Outdoor Experience (FOE) through the Outdoor Program, as these programs overlap.

Hall: Downey Floor 3



  • GEOL 1101 - First Year Seminar: The Anthropocene: Humans Control of Nature
  • GEOL 1100 - Physical Geology

*You will be able to add an additional 2 or 3 courses to your schedule when you meet with an advisor during orientation in June.

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