Westminster Creates New Geology Major in Answer to National Industry Boom

Aug 27, 2013

Aug. 27, 2013

New geology program will take advantage of Utah's natural resources and demand for industry experts

SALT LAKE CITY - Over the last decade, there has been a huge expansion of the fuel industry, and with it, a rapid increase in the demand for mineral exploration. Due to this recent boom, geologists have become some of the most highly sought after industry experts both nationally and regionally.

To address this new demand, Westminster College has created a new geology major to teach students the fundamental techniques and principles necessary for working in this expanding field.

"With all of its natural resources, Utah is a natural place for a geology major," said Dr. David Goldsmith, Westminster geology professor and program chair. "Jobs in geology are abundant and well-paying-even with just a bachelor's degree. As a result, there has been a huge increase in geology enrollment nationwide."

Local companies, such as Rio Tinto's Kennecott Utah Copper, are one of the many businesses that are seeking employees with a sound background in geology to help move their industry forward.

"Geology is a critical science for Kennecott and other businesses in the natural resource industry," said Preston Chiaro, Group Executive, Technology and Innovation and board member, Westminster College. "Westminster will continue to graduate skilled and bright young professionals who will have the knowledge and ability to solve problems and drive innovation for Kennecott and other businesses."

Westminster's geology program will teach students to understand the processes that act on the earth, to use techniques and methods used by geologists to obtain geological data and to understand the interactions between geologic processes and human activity. Students will take courses that incorporate traditional lecture-style classes with hands-on lab and fieldwork. Ultimately, students will leave the program with a Bachelor of Science and the skills necessary to pursue a career in the field of geology.

"Our geology students don't just learn about the earth, they learn from the earth," added Goldsmith. "The classroom experience is only one part of a geology education at Westminster College. Utah has an amazing geologic history. Within a short van ride from campus, you can find rocks ranging in time from nearly 3-billion-year-old bedrock to recent glacial deposits. The mountains, deserts and shorelines of Utah expose rocks from nearly every geologic time period and almost every type of ancient environment."

For more information, visit http://www.westminstercollege.edu/geology/

Media Contacts

Krista DeAngelis and Arikka Von

About Westminster

Westminster is a private, independent, and comprehensive college in Salt Lake City, Utah. Students experience the liberal arts blended with professional programs in an atmosphere dedicated to civic engagement. With the goal of enabling its graduates to live vibrant, just, and successful lives, Westminster provides transformational learning experiences for both undergraduate and graduate students in a truly student-centered environment. Faculty focus on teaching, learning, and developing distinctive, innovative programs, while students thrive on Westminster’s urban Sugar House campus within minutes of the Rocky Mountains.

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