Geological and Environmental Sciences

Career Opportunities

Careers in Geology

Geology is the study of the Earth, from the chemistry of the minerals to the rocks and strata that comprise mountains to large-scale phenomena like plate tectonics and how planets form.  The program at CSU Chico focuses both on the fundamentals of the science and allows students to choose electives to more narrow their focus in the field.

Employment rates are very high for graduates, with most students employed in the private sector, working in fields as diverse as groundwater management, landslide hazards, mining, and fossil protection.

Who should pursue Geology?

A degree in geology provides a great career for individuals that love to travel, be outdoors, and also are passionate about science.  Not all careers involve fieldwork, but most jobs allow flexibility to pursue your interests.  Because ‘geology’ is a global science, many jobs lead to travel all over the globe—particularly those jobs that focus on either resources, such as metals, or research.

Future Trends Look Good!

The continuing technology boom is increasing demand for geologists who understand where resources might be found.  As one example, the expansion of electric vehicles require sources of lithium to power the batteries, but where does lithium come from?  Climate change and demands on water sources and natural gas is also leading to an increase in employment in California and beyond.  Recent national studies show a degree in Geology is one of the most ‘employable’ with starting salaries averaging $82,000.  Our recent graduates have found employment with engineering firms, environmental consultants, mining companies, and state and federal agencies.