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Geology Department goes green with the annual alumni newsletter; featuring highlights from students, faculty, staff, and alumni.  Read all the department's highlights on this link: Precambrian Basement 2016-17 or prior years PCB publications.


Beth McMillan ‘91, Professor and Chair Department of Earth Sciences, University of Arkansas at Little Rock "On the shoulders of giants: subsummit surfaces and the Rocky Mountains" Friday, September 30, 2016 at 12:15 in Tutt Science Lecture Hall

Ana Vargo '84, Professional Geologist, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Denver, CO, "What an engineering geologist does" Friday, December 2, 2016 at 12:15 in Palmer Hall 16

Dan Niemela '00, Hydrogeologist, Bishop Brogden Associates, Denver, CO, "History of Water Rights in Colorado" Friday, February 24, 2017, at 12:15 in Palmer Hall 15

Celeste Mercer, Research Geologist, USGS, Denver, CO, "Magmas to metals: Insights into evolution of magma parental to one of Colorado's premier ore deposits", Wednesday, March 1, 2017, at 12:15 in Palmer Hall 16

Talks at nearby institutions:

Location: Denver Museum of Nature & Science, VIP Room (Enter the museum and make a hard left, pass the gift shop on your right, then bathrooms on the left, and then the TRex Café on the right; the VIP room is at the far NE corner of the museum, just past the set of three TRex Café cash registers).
Time: 3:00 - 4:00pm
* Museum admission not required to attend *

February 7th Rich Barclay (Smithsonian National Museum), The Ginkgo CO2 barometer   
February 21st Brent Breithaupt & Neffra Matthews (Bureau of Land Management), Pterosaur Paleobiology: Insights from Photogrammetric Ichnology
April 7th Mark Loewen (University of Utah), Reef Communities from the Great Lakes of the Eocene
May 12th Simone Hoffman (New York Institute of Technology), The Evolution of Sensory Systems in Mammals
May 22nd William Clyde (University of New Hampshire), Hyperthermals: Extreme Global Warming Events in the Geological Past
September 22nd Raymond Rogers (Macalester College), Twenty Years of Paleontological Adventure & Discovery on the Great Red Island, Madagascar
October 9th  Graham Young (Manitoba Museum), Tropical fossils from the edge of the Arctic
November 2nd Jaelyn Eberle (University of Colorado, Boulder), Life at the Top of the Eocene Greenhouse World
December 5th Ellen Currano (University of Wyoming), Seeing the forest through the leaves - from Ethiopia to the Rocky Mountains

Contact us:

General email: or

Precambrian Basement submissions:

Geology Department Chair Jeff Noblett:

Welcome back to CC Geology!

Senior Geology Major Alec Lockett is conducting research in Antarctica -- follow his blog at:​blockfeatures/​author/​a_lockett/

Regional Studies class at White Sands National Monument in New Mexico

The Geology Department at Colorado College offers introductory and advanced courses in earth sciences that may lead to a B.A. in geology.

Have you ever thought about becoming a science teacher? 

Department Philosophy

The courses in the major are designed to provide a foundation for a professional career in the earth sciences, provide the background for graduate school, which has increasingly become a necessary prerequisite to a professional career, provide an opportunity for students majoring in other fields to combine their expertise with geology, and educate students about the physical environment and our place in it, as part of a liberal arts education.

An excerpt from the nomination statement of Marcia K. McNutt (’74 graduate, Physics), presented to U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, 10/8/09, during the process of her selection as Director of the U.S. Geological Survey.

“My favorite college course was Introduction to Geology, taught by Professor John Lewis. Colorado College uses the Block Plan, in which students take only one course at a time for a month. Introduction to Geology is two blocks long. So my first two months at college were spent with Doc Lewis and about 19 other students scrambling around the Front Range with our backpacks and sleeping bags trying to piece together the geologic history of the Southern Rockies from first principles. We never cracked a book the entire time. I was drawn to the grandeur of the Earth sciences and awed by the time and space scales upon which Earth processes played out. No lab coat. No test tube. Science outside!”

The Block Plan

The Colorado College Block Plan allows us to offer a unique program in geology. Because students take just one course at a time, with class size limited to 25 students, the program is intensive and individualized.

The flexibility of the Block Plan also allows faculty and students to pursue independent study and research projects, during the academic year as well as during summer and winter breaks. Much of this work takes place away from the campus. Many of our students do field-oriented research as part of a required senior seminar project or as part of a distinction thesis.

Students with strong interests in both geology and environmental issues may major in Geology and take elective courses in other environmental sciences and environmental issues. Alternatively, such students may major in Environmental Science complemented with coursework in Geology.