5-Year Strategic Plan

Mission

Our mission is to increase our understanding of Earth, to prepare the next generation of geoscientists for careers in academia or industry, and to prepare the next generation of citizens to make informed decisions about Earth and Earth resources.

Current Status

As of Fall 2010, the department has fourteen tenure-track faculty, one instructor, three administrative support staff, and five research support and technical staff (an additional faculty member and an additional administrative staff member will join the Department in Spring 2011). The Department has 103 undergraduate majors (56 in Science, 19 in University College, and 28 in Freshmen Year), 16 PhD students, 40 MS students, and 69 minors. During the Fall 2010 semester, the department taught 4786 student credit hours. Extramural funding in FY 2009-10 totaled $1,136,522.

Goals

Our goals are to pursue excellence in fundamental and applied research in the Earth Sciences, to sustain quality and enhance diversity in undergraduate and graduate education, and to provide outreach and service to ensure the application of our scholarship for the benefit of society and our profession. Our strategic plan focuses on four specific goals related to Discovery, Learning, Engagement, and Diversity that form the basis of our Mission. For each goal, we describe indicators that will alert us as to the achievement of our goals and thus fulfillment of our Mission.

 

  1.    Discovery: to pursue excellence in fundamental and applied research in the Earth Sciences
  2.    Learning: to sustain high quality undergraduate and graduate education
  3.    Engagement: to provide outreach and service to ensure the application of our scholarship for the benefit of society and our profession
  4.    Diversity: to enhance the intellectual atmosphere of the Department

Major Indicators

We have developed several indicators that will be used to monitor our progress toward achieving these goals. A few of the indicators are listed here.

  •    Number of research publications
  •    Number of external grants and contracts
  •    Semester credit hours generated per academic year by lower division
  •    Number of students in BS, MS, and PhD degree programs
  •    Number of teachers trained