Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Why Earth and Environmental Sciences?

Interested in how the earth's systems work together to provide a home for all living things? Interested in how humans interact with and change the environment, in the past and the future? Interested in today's ever-evolving mapping and GIS technologies? We offer interdisciplinary solutions to the world’s most pressing environmental problems. With an engaging faculty, state-of-the-art laboratories, and a variety of landscapes around us, there is no place better to study them than Murray State.

We offer Bachelor's degrees in several tracks, including archaeology, earth science (secondary education), environmental science, geography & GIS, and geology. Our Master's program offers concentrations in archaeology, environmental geology, geoinformatics, and watershed science. Students can also earn a GIS Certificate as an undergraduate and a Certificate in Geospatial Data Science as a graduate student.

What can I do with a degree in Earth and Environmental Sciences?

Job growth rates in the earth and environmental sciences are higher than average. In the case of GIS or geospatial technology, it is much higher than average. Take a look at  these amazing careers in GIS.

Our graduates have found jobs as scientists, planners, archaeologist, cartographers and GIS specialists, in:

  • Local, state and federal government agencies including US Geological Survey (USGS), US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and National Geospatial-intellegience Agency (NGA)
  • Fast-growing geospatial industry including ESRI
  • Environmental consulting companies
  • Cultural resources management agencies

Look at where our alumni has developed a career in earth and environmental sciences around the world.

The Murray State Advantage

Our students have access to state-of-the-art facilities and faculty-led research and field experience at the Murray State Archaeology Lab, a summer field archaeology school, and the Mapping Applications and Resource Center (MARC), a core entity in the Murray State University Watershed Studies Institute (WSI). We also partner with several local and regional organizations to provide students with internship opportunities.

Meet Our Students

Spring 2018 Soils and Geomorphology class coring for the NASA project

Spring 2018 Soils and Geomorphology class coring for the NASA project


Benjamin Estes

Benjamin Estes
Environmental Geology graduate from Ozark, Missouri
More about Benjamin


Molly Karnes

Molly Karnes
Earth Sciences graduate from Mount Vernon, Illinois
More about Molly


Mallory Gerzan

Mallory Gerzan
Environmental Geology garduate from Madisonville, Kentucky
More about Mallory


Lance Stewart

Lance Stewart
Watershed Science major from Murray, Kentucky
More about Lance


 For more information, contact Dr. Robin Zhang, Chair, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Murray State University, 334 Blackburn Science Building, Murray, KY 42071. (270) 809-6760 or