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Department of Geography & Environmental Sustainability at SUNY Oneonta
317 Milne Library
(607) 436-3459
Fax: (607) 436-3438

Dr. Wendy Lascell

Jill Stafford

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Letter from the Chair about Geography Majors


So you are interested in Geography!

The Department of Geography is thriving, and this is an exciting time to be a Geography major. Geography is about “stepping out” and discovering the world of cultural diversity and the equally diverse physical environment that is the stage upon which life unfolds.  Our majors explore every day in the classroom, in the field, and even in other countries.  We are a small department that deeply cares about your education.  As a major we will take the time to work one-on-one with you to help ensure your success at this College. Our faculty are among the best at what they do.  We are knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and creative, making learning at the highest level enjoyable!  If you want to visit our department and meet the faculty, you have an open invitation.

The Geography major consists of three tracks titled General Geography, Geographic Information Systems, and Urban and Regional Planning. Each of these tracks has the same basic core requirements. This configuration permits students to change easily between tracks while deciding what career path within Geography they wish to pursue. The Geography Department also participates in the College’s Environmental Sciences Program. This program has four different concentrations, one of which is titled Environmental Planning. The Geography Department oversees this concentration. Within the College’s Elementary Education Program, students are required to have a liberal arts concentration. Only thirteen liberal arts concentrations are available, and one of these concentrations is Geography.  If you are an Education Major, and select the Geography Concentration, you can actually major in Geography at the same time. Students who enter the Secondary Education Program in social studies are also taking a number of Geography courses, and some elect to dual major in Secondary Education and Geography. Thus, the Geography program provides students with a variety of career paths and high degree of flexibility to move between majors.

The number of students majoring in Geography and environmental planning averages between 40 and 60 per year.  This is a friendly, convivial group of students, very active in different clubs on campus, such as the Geography Club and Protect Your Environment. Our students are involved in interesting research projects and work in various semester or summer internships locally, with state agencies in Albany, and with planning departments within the New York metropolitan area. A number of our graduates now work throughout the United States for various planning agencies, GIS, cartography and remote sensing organizations, and in environmental consulting.

We look forward to seeing you in our classrooms.  Come visit me for a personal tour and for more detailed information about the Department.  As Chair of the Department, I have an open-door policy and am very available to students. If you are still uncertain about our major, I encourage you to take a Geography class and make an informed decision.  This is a great College, and whatever your major, I feel certain that you will be happy here.

Best Wishes,

Tracy H. Allen, Ph.D.
Department of Geography Chair and Associate Professor
Department Chair Office: Milne 317B

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