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A newsletter of the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University | Spring 2016 Issue

The college is moving full steam ahead on major initiatives while continuing to support a thriving research and teaching environment. Most newsworthy is the launch of our undergraduate Climate Science option, which emphasizes a deep understanding of the climate system, as well as skills that can be applied to climate mitigation and adaptation solutions. In this issue you can read about the first graduate of the program and his aspirations to combine physics and communications to help people adapt to climate change.

We are also pleased to announce that CEOAS has taken over operations of R/V Pacific Storm, previously with the Marine Mammal Institute. The 84-foot vessel will expand our research capabilities and facilitate core drilling, buoy recovery, autonomous glider deployment/retrieval and much more. Thanks to all of those involved who made this possible.

CEOAS brought together scientists from East Africa and the American West to look at common threats to land, livelihoods and wildlife. Geography professors Hannah Gosnell and Larry Becker convened a symposium in April with experts from Kenya, Montana, Arizona and other states to share knowledge about the current and future prospects for the planet's grasslands and the people who live on them.

You may have noticed our faculty in the news lately. We've enjoyed national coverage on our efforts to understand the Petermann Glacier system, mitigate the effects of ocean acidification, and anticipate the next mega-quake. Our faculty and students have also made headlines for garnering prestigious awards. For example, Chris Goldfinger and coauthors received the Geological Society of America's Kirk Bryan Award, considered the Nobel Prize of quaternary geology.

As you can see, it has been a busy season for us. Thank you for making your College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences an institution of excellence and outstanding place to learn.

Undergraduate Programs

Graduate Programs


Alumni in the News

  • Stephanie Grocke (Ph.D. 2014) was featured in February, 2016 issue of National Geographic Magazine article, "On the road to a supervolcano."
  • Geology graduate turned doughnut maker Benny Augeri (B.S. 2015) earned start-up money for his vision to transform the pastry market.
  • Oceanographer Bill Peterson (Ph.D. 1979) kicked off the 2015-16 World of Haystack Rock lecture series with a talk about marine food chains.

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Comments, suggestions and feedback may be sent to Abby P. Metzger


magnetic field
Birth of the Magnetic Field
If you’re alive and reading this, you can thank the Earth's magnetic field, which provides a protective barrier against the sun's harmful radiation. But how did our magnetic field begin? Find out how.


Jim Lerczak
Columbia Connections
Physical oceanographer Jim Lerczak is measuring how materials move in and out of Young's Bay, an estuary off the Columbia River. Measuring the flux of organic matter will help uncover how these lateral bays influence river ecosystems.


Ryon Merrick
Climate Science Pioneer
Ryon Merrick, the first graduate of the new Climate Science option, wants to combine his passion for physics and anthropology to help communicate climate change impacts.


Mekong River
Hotspots of Water Risk
Geographer Aaron Wolf and partners around the world just completed the most comprehensive assessment of the world's 286 transboundary river basins and identified "hotspots" where geopolitical risks are projected to increase in the next 15 to 30 years.
College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences
Oregon State University
104 CEOAS Administration Building
Corvallis, OR 97331-5503