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Hello, and welcome to Stanford’s Earth Systems Program!

We are an interdisciplinary bachelor’s and co-terminal master’s program within the School of Earth, Energy, & Environmental Sciences. As the largest undergraduate major within Stanford Earth, we engage students who possess a wide range of interests, from understanding the way the Earth works, to promoting sustainability and conservation, developing engineering solutions to today’s global challenges, and communicating environmental science and policy. In fact, the Earth Systems Program has never been more relevant to the issues we face as a society in a fast-changing world, and as a university striving to support sustainable practices locally and globally.

Through rigorous interdisciplinary coursework and a variety of internship opportunities, students reflect on and shape their future. Our engaged faculty from across the university teach courses in the seven Earth Systems tracks and serve as student academic advisors.

Our track system offers students both breadth and depth through its many choices of specialization. A strong network of student advisors and TAs also ensure that the program remains student-directed and student-focused. Our diverse students go on to enjoy careers in research, engineering, government, teaching, consulting, and non-profit organizations.

Karen Casciotti

Victoria and Roger Sant Director
Earth Systems Program

Meet our leadership team

Meet our Earth Systems Program staff

Meet Our Executive Committee

  • Patrick Archie, Director, O'Donohue Family Stanford Educational Farm, Lecturer
  • Kevin Arrigo, Donald and Donald M. Steel Professor in Earth Sciences
  • Adam Brandt, Associate Professor of Energy Resources Engineering
  • Marshall Burke, Associate Professor of Earth System Science and Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
  • Karen Casciotti, Victoria and Roger Sant Director, Earth Systems Program, Associate Professor of Earth System Science and Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment
  • Rodolfo Dirzo, Bing Prof in Environmental Science and Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment
  • Deana Fabbro-Johnston, Admin Services Manager, Earth Systems Program
  • Thomas Hayden, Professor of the Practice, Earth Systems Program
  • George Hilley, Professor of Geological Sciences
  • Suki Hoagland,  Internship Director, Lecturer, Earth Systems Program
  • James Holland Jones, Associate Professor of Earth System Science and Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment
  • Anthony Kovscek, Keleen and Carlton Beal Professor of Petroleum Engineering and Senior Fellow at the Precourt Institute for Energy
  • David Lobell, Professor of Earth System Science and Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute, at the Woods Institute for the Environment and at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research
  • Richard Nevle, Lecturer, Deputy Director, Earth Systems Program
  • Leif Thomas, Associate Professor of Earth System Science and, by courtesy, of Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Peter Vitousek, Clifford G. Morrison Professor in Population and Resource Studies, Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment and Professor, by courtesy, of Earth System Science

Our program history: Teaching students about the planet for nearly 30 years

The Jerry Yang and Akiko Yamazaki Environment and Energy Building, the home of the Earth Systems Program.

Stanford's Earth Systems Program is the result of discussions that began in the 1980s about the possible design of an interdisciplinary, undergraduate, environmental sciences program. The Program was authorized in 1992 by the Faculty Senate to nominate candidates for the B.S. degree. Authorization was given to nominate candidates for the M.S. degree in 1993, and the M.A. degree in 2015.

Since its inception in 1992, the Program has undergone significant change.  With input from Program Leadership, our Executive Committee, affiliated faculty (approximately 50 faculty), and declared students, we regularly revisit the curriculum and build new classes and programs that take advantage of faculty additions and new areas of research at Stanford.

One aspect of the Program that has not changed through time is our commitment to active and engaged advising of our students. We offer a tiered advising network that starts with an annual cohort of six peer advisors and includes committed staff and faculty.

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