Environmental Science

Faculty & Staff


Kevin Alexander, Ph.D. headshot
Professor of Biology; Chair, Department of Natural and Environmental Sciences
B.A., The University of Texas at Austin, Biology, 1991, Ph.D., University of North Texas, Biology, 1997
Phone: 970.943.3405
Office Location: Hurst Hall 143C
Robert Fillmore headshot
Professor of Geology
B.A., Western Colorado University, M.S., University of Northern Arizona, Ph.D., University of Kansas
Phone: 970.943.2650
Office Location: Hurst Hall 16B
Patrick Magee headshot
Assistant Professor of Biology
B.S., Colorado State University, Wildlife Biology, M.S., University of Missouri, Wildlife Ecology, Ph.D., University of Missouri, Wildlife Ecology
Phone: 970.943.7121
Office Location: Hurst Hall 143A
David W. Marchetti, Ph.D. headshot
Professor of Geology
B.A., State University of New York, College at Geneseo, 1996, M.S., University of Utah, 2002, Ph.D., University of Utah, 2006
Phone: (970) 943-2367
Office Location: Hurst Hall 224
John D. Mason, Ph.D. headshot
Associate Professor of Physics
B.A., Colby College, M.S., University of California - Santa Cruz, Ph.D., University of California - Santa Cruz
Phone: 970.943.2142
Office Location: Hurst Hall 116
Jason E. Mullins, Ph.D. headshot
Professor of Chemistry
B.S., Clemson University, Ph.D., University of Montana
Phone: 970.943.3152
Office Location: Hurst Hall 204
Elizabeth Petrie, Ph.D. headshot
Moncrief Chair in Petroleum Geology
B.S., University of New Mexico, Biology, 2000, B.S., University of New Mexico, Earth & Planetary Sciences, 2000, M.S., Utah State University, Geology, 2003, Ph.D., Utah State University, Geology, 2014
Phone: 970.943.2117
Office Location: Hurst Hall 16D
M. Suzanne Taylor, Ph.D. headshot
Associate Professor of Physics
B.S., Linfield College, M.S., University of New Mexico, Ph.D., University of New Mexico
Phone: 970.943.2155
Office Location: Hurst Hall 118

The Environmental Science Minor at Western teaches fundamentals of life sciences in a “living laboratory” of the Rockies. It gives students the opportunity to add a stronger science emphasis to their degree or to add diversity to their existing degree plan. Students studying a wide range of topics can benefit from the Environmental Science Minor. 

What is the Western Difference for the Environmental Science Minor?

You’ll explore public and private lands, from sagebrush and streams to deep forests and rocky alpine crags. You’ll learn from passionate scientists dedicated to hands-on approaches. With Western’s connections to natural resource agencies, professionals frequently interact with our students in class, on field trips, and in training through internships and paid, local jobs.

Students can work with faculty mentors and design a program of study from a selection of elective courses to complement their chosen major.  Many of these courses offer research experiences for undergraduates and successful students often present their research at conferences or in public forums. Western students have been involved in research various topics in anthropology, biology, chemistry, geology or physics.

Western’s individualized education allows you to combine your Environmental Science minor studies to diversify a science major to complement different majors, such as Business, Mathematics, Politics & Government, Environment & Sustainability. 

What Skills Will I Learn? 

You’ll learn outside in the field or the lab based courses that focus on scientific methods. You will gain technical background and skills to communicate with scientists and resource managers. You can learn field or laboratory techniques.

What Can I Do With my Degree? 

The Environmental Science minor is a great way to round-out your degree with a stronger or more diverse scientific emphasis. Our science students have been hired at the local, state and national levels by such agencies as Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the National Park Service and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service. Students graduating from our science programs also have also been successful working with non-governmental institutions, such as nonprofit environmental groups, Native American tribes and for-profit consulting companies. Students attend graduate programs all over the United States. Many students are highly qualified for a variety of seasonal positions, working for researchers and natural resources management agencies.