Geography is the science of place, space, and environments
in the natural and social world around us.
Physical geographers study the natural world, including patterns of
climate, landforms, vegetation, soils, and water on the Earth’s surface. Human geographers study the social world, things
such as how people and their activities are distributed in space, how we use
and perceive space, and how we create and sustain places on the globe. Our department teaches students to critically
analyze the many relationships of these different studies towards the
betterment of our world.
Since our department’s founding in 1909, our mission has
focused on promoting geographical and environmental awareness and literacy
through classroom activities, research projects, and outreach programs. Students may choose from over 40 courses
ranging over a wide variety of subjects, including cultural geography,
political geography, cartography, GIS, geomorphology, meteorology, soil
science, environmental change, and spatial analysis of remote sensing and
aerial photography. Students gain
extensive hands-on experience, both out in the field collecting data and in the
classroom using the latest geospatial technologies and software. We also work with various local employers to
provide students with internships for real-world work experience.
La Crosse’s own local geography provides students with truly
unique opportunities for projects, research, and explorations, as our campus is
located within a mile of towering sandstone bluffs, a 900 acre urban wetland,
and the Mississippi River, all accessible through miles of hiking trails. In addition, our distinguished faculty and
staff frequently lead field trips, both in-country and overseas, to allow our
students to gain valuable first-hand experience and knowledge of other cultures
Geography leads towards a wide variety of exciting and
rewarding careers. Whether you want a
career in environmental science or commercial business,
natural resources or urban planning, whether you want to work outdoors or in
front of a computer, settle down or travel the world, our department will give
you the skills, knowledge, and experiences needed to get you there.