Geological Engineering Bachelor's Degree

The world needs professionals who can apply engineering to solve complex geologic, atmospheric, and environmental problems facing humankind.

At Michigan Tech, explore industrial practices for safely and efficiently adapting geologic features to society’s needs, while protecting the Earth and its inhabitants. Geological engineers play an important role in identifying and mitigating man-made and natural hazards that pose a threat to civil structures, infrastructure, or people.

Their work includes performing site investigations for planned tunnels, dams, or roads; locating sites and designing facilities for nuclear waste disposal; developing and restoring groundwater resources; stabilizing rock and soil slopes for dams, highways, and property development; exploring and harvesting mineral and energy resources; and studying geologic hazards such as volcanoes, landslides, and earthquakes.

Our ABET accredited BS in Geological Engineering prepares students to create the future.

  • 18
    students for average class size
  • 5th
    most focused geoscience engineering school
  • 5:1
    undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio

Tomorrow Needs Geoscientists in Diverse Landscapes

The daily duties of geoscientists, such as geological engineers, could include investigating natural phenomena and collecting data on location, interpreting the results in a lab, and writing reports.

Field studies bring geoscientists to diverse landscapes around the globe—from volcanoes to oceans to oil fields. Geoscientists must have the ability to develop a picture of a field site based on limited data; therefore, sound critical-thinking skills are advantageous in this discipline. Due to the nature of their work, these professionals must adapt to a variety of situations and working conditions.

Specialty areas in geological engineering include the following:

  • Soil mechanics
  • Rock mechanics
  • Geotechnics
  • Groundwater engineering
  • Hydrogeology
  • Civil design
  • Hazard investigation and planning
  • Natural resources

Mission Statement

The Bachelor of Science in Geological Engineering will provide students with a broad background in science and engineering, a thorough foundation in geology and sufficient depth and breadth in the areas of humanities, social science, and economics, to ensure that they can function and communicate in an effective and responsible way in meeting the needs of society. Students will receive a thorough background in applied geophysics, which will support advanced engineering courses. To maximize the benefits to society, students will receive a balanced curriculum of junior and senior level engineering courses in energy resources, mineral resources, groundwater engineering, and geomechanics.

Be Career-ready

Discover a world of opportunity. A bachelor’s degree in geological engineering will prepare you for a career in industry or graduate study. Generally, geologists employed in industry spend part of their working time outdoors enjoying nature and, if desired, traveling the world. Students interested in certain sectors of industry, such as oil exploration, or a career in academia should explore graduate education options. An advanced degree provides greater specialization.

Each year, more than 400 employers come to campus to recruit Huskies at our career fairs and our business grads go on to work at Fortune 500 companies, tech startups, small businesses, and everything in between.

Career Opportunities for Geological Engineering

  • Groundwater and surface water monitoring and cleaning
  • Natural-hazards mitigation
  • Satellite remote sensing of environmental processes
  • GIS mapping of environmental data
  • Site investigations of underground hazards
  • Slope failure investigations
  • Oil or gas exploration and recovery
  • Subsurface visualization
  • Natural and induced seismicity evaluation

Ready to take the next step?

Learn more about studying geological engineering at Michigan's flagship technological university.


Landscape with recent landslide damage.
A view of the landslide that destroyed the Munnar College building. Image Credit: I&PRD
"Technologies used today in disaster management need to be taught to students so they can be ready for when a disaster hits a community this large."Thomas Oommen, associate professor of geological and mining engineering sciences

Earn an ABET Accredited Engineering Degree

With ABET accreditation, you can be sure that your Michigan Tech degree meets the quality standards that prepares you to enter a global workforce.

And, because it requires comprehensive, periodic evaluations, ABET accreditation demonstrates our continuing commitment to the quality of your program—both now and in the future.

Sought Worldwide

ABET's voluntary peer-review process is highly respected. Its criteria are developed by technical professionals and focuses on what you, as a student, experience and learn. It adds critical value to academic programs in technical disciplines—where quality, precision, and safety are of the utmost importance.

The GMES Department

  • Our facilities allow students to experiment with advanced geologic technology. The department maintains labs dedicated to the study of remote sensing and volcanology, geographic information systems (GIS), subsurface remediation and visualization, and seismic petrophysics, among other areas.
  • Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula offers beautiful outdoor facilities. The area surrounding campus is ideal for a wide variety of geologic studies. You don’t have to drive far to find miles of rocky Lake Superior shoreline and acres of forestland.
  • Our curriculum focuses intensely on field studies; we teach two field courses in the summer but also provide plenty of opportunities for students to see classic and novel field sites in Michigan and beyond. Students have traveled to sites in Alaska, Canada, Florida, Guatemala, Mexico, Montana, Newfoundland, Nicaragua, and Utah.
  • Undergraduate research opportunities are plentiful. Our faculty conduct research abroad, and students often accompany them on field trips. You might study volcanoes in South America, Precambrian rocks in Australia (or right here in Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula), or the Bering Glacier’s melt rate in Alaska.
  • Our well-rounded curriculum emphasizes the study of geophysics and social geology, or methods for mitigating natural hazards through effective communication and community involvement.
  • Faculty and staff focus on giving students the personal attention and support necessary for not only academic success, but also a positive undergraduate experience overall. Learn from faculty who understand responsible utilization of our Earth.
  • Opportunities for intercultural exchange abound at Michigan Tech. The Study Abroad Program sends students to countries around the world for stints ranging from two weeks to one year. D80 allows students to apply their studies to the problems facing economically disadvantaged communities.
  • Students are encouraged to join the Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration, Materials United, the Geology Club, the Society of Women Engineers, or one of many other organizations for opportunities to get involved, invested, explore new horizons, and meet fellow students who share a similar interest.

Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences Programs

Or, start with our General Engineering option and give yourself time to decide.

MTU engineering

Real Engineering. Meaningful Work.

We are committed to inspiring students, advancing knowledge, and innovating technological solutions to create a sustainable, just, and prosperous world. With an entering engineering class of about 1,000 students, 17 degrees to choose from, and 160 faculty in the College of Engineering alone, we provide a world-class education with the trusted reputation of Michigan Tech.

As a student at Michigan Tech you’ll work closely with faculty mentors, immerse yourself in experience-powered learning, and gain a thorough understanding of engineering practice. Collaborate and innovate in laboratories, coursework, Enterprise, and Senior Design—you'll work with industry partners on real engineering projects and develop strong skill sets for your future.

You could study abroad, with engineering opportunities ranging from a few weeks to one full year. Or focus on problems facing disadvantaged communities in countries around the world. Michigan Tech’s D80 program offers you a range of options.

More than 400 employers regularly recruit our students for internships, co-ops, and full-time employment. Engineering students average seven interviews, and 98 percent are employed within their field of study, enlist in the military, or enroll in a graduate school within six months of graduation. A degree in engineering from Michigan Tech can take you anywhere.

Tomorrow Needs You

Engineers do a lot of things, but there's one thing we do first and foremost: we help people. We use creative ideas and technologies to solve problems in health care, energy, transportation, hunger, space exploration, climate change, and more—much more. Become an engineer who is ready for what tomorrow needs.

Student Stories

"The Student Chapter at Michigan Tech stood out among the AIPG Student Chapters in the nation this past year, and are highly deserving of this distinction and honor"American Institute of Professional Geologists (AIPG)