Geological engineering is an interdisciplinary program with faculty from the College of Engineering and the College of Letters and Science. Geological engineering integrates two disciplines: geology and engineering. Geologists study the earth, its origins, composition, and evolution. Engineers apply scientific principles to practical ends, such as the design and construction of facilities for practical use by society. Geological engineers find the best ways to use the earth’s resources to solve technical problems while protecting the environment.
Geological engineers solve a variety of practical problems associated with rock and soils using principles of sustainable engineering. They design and construct structures, transportation facilities, dams, tunnels, and power plants. They mitigate naturally occurring phenomena such as floods, landslides, and earthquakes, and develop safe and environmentally sound sources of energy and minerals. They also manage groundwater and surface water resources to ensure the public safety and health. Geological engineers also design and construct subsurface repositories for waste disposal and remediate contaminated sites.