Earth Sciences


The Earth Sciences department at SUNY Oswego offers students a wide range of unique and practical experiences that result in our graduates successfully finding acceptance to graduate schools and diverse employment after graduation. We feel strongly that students learn best from hands-on experience, and as a result, Earth Sciences students are regularly outside collecting data, making analyses and tackling real-life problems.

The proximity to a diversity of world-class rock exposures and the regularity of exceptional meteorological conditions, combined with faculty highly active in research and eager to involve students, makes the undergraduate experience through this department one-of-a-kind. We believe that a strong classical background in the discipline combined with strong faculty student relationships make SUNY Oswego the ideal place to get a degree in the Earth Sciences.

Majors and Programs

Student Opportunities

Most of our students get more involved in their discipline by participating in our astronomy, geology or meteorology clubs. Some learn leadership skills by leading field trips, organizing conferences or offering programs for the public. Many involve themselves in research, producing senior theses and presenting at local, regional and national meetings. Some are paid through grants to join faculty in research. Many also do internships with industry, government offices or TV stations which is a great way to learn, explore opportunities and make connections for future employment. Some students also forecast for campus TV station WTOP.


Dr. Robert Ballentine, Associate Professor of Meteorology
Dr. Diana Boyer, Assistant Professor of Geology
Dr. Shashi Kanbur, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy (half time each)
Dr. Scott Roby, Associate Professor of Astronomy
Dr. Steve Skubis, Assistant Professor of Meteorology
Dr. Alfred Stamm, Distinguished Service Professor of Meteorology, Chair
Dr. Scott Steiger, Assistant Professor of Meteorology
Dr. Paul Tomascak, Associate Professor of Geology
Dr. David Valentino, Professor of Geology

After Oswego

Employers cite the demanding course load and high-level research that all Oswego graduates from the department undertake as key components to their successes in industry and government. Employers know that Oswego graduates have solid grasp of both principles of the discipline and fundamental science and mathematics, since all Earth Sciences students must satisfy requirements in calculus, physics, and chemistry as presented in demanding courses.

Outlook for employment in the Earth and Environmental sciences is at its all-time best. A significant proportion of professional geologists work in areas such as urban planning, environmental restoration and defense intelligence, as well as in oil, gas and mineral exploration. Graduates from a strong Geology program like SUNY Oswego's can expect employment opportunities in a wide assortment of industries. Most recent graduates are employed in industries related to the environment or as secondary teachers. Many students have also found success in excellent graduate programs such as SUNY Buffalo, SUNY Stony Brook, Rutgers University, Temple University, the University of Florida and the University of Pittsburgh.

Employment opportunity in meteorology is sufficient, with most of our graduates finding good jobs as forecasters, climatologists, hydrologists, environmental specialists, field technicians, ocean ship routers, teachers or media weather reporters with the National Weather Service, TV stations, government labs, the Air Force or Navy, environmental firms, or high schools. Many students find themselves to be well prepared to continue in graduate programs at universities including Penn State, Albany, Princeton, Texas A&M, University of Illinois, University of Oklahoma, North Carolina State, University of Washington, University of San Diego and Colorado State. Several have gone on to become professors.