From our planet’s formation to its future climate, from its core to the edge of the atmosphere, the entire Earth is our field area.

Faculty Letter to Geology Students

June 30, 2020

In response to the recent acts of violence against Black Americans, the Amherst College Geology Department faculty have sent a letter to our students acknowledging the past and continuing presence of racism embedded in our field and committing to the work of reform. The following are two excerpts from that letter, which can be read in its entirety.

We dedicate ourselves to the sustained efforts necessary to uproot systemic racism and all forms of discrimination in our field; we are committed to building an inclusive, equitable, and just community both within our department and beyond. We start by affirming that Black Lives Matter and by standing with anti-racist groups in denouncing and condemning racism.

Scientific and societal progress demand the inclusion and participation of black, indigenous, and people of color; it is essential that these voices be a part of the work of geology at every level.

Our courses explore the science of the Earth—its physical makeup, its history and how it works. Geology at Amherst is not confined to classrooms and labs: field trips take students from the mountains to the beach.

Interterm 2020 in Hawaii

Geology Field Trip

Twenty-four geology students and two intrepid faculty — Dave Jones and Victor Guevara — studied the geology of the big island of Hawaii for seven days in January 2020. Watch a video of the trip by Angelina Han ’22.

Geology Summer Research

Summer Research Opportunities

There are abundant opportunities for students to do research with faculty in our department. These opportunities provide invaluable experience doing laboratory and field geology research.