Welcome to the Department of Geography. Our department has been growing rapidly over the last few years and we are looking forward to new challenges ahead. Please take time to browse through the links on this site to learn more about our department, faculty, students, and staff.
If you are interested in studying in our department and you have additional questions, or you would like to make an appointment to visit with the Department Chair, or faculty members, please contact us. Graduate students please visit the Graduate School web site for application materials and additional information.
News & Events
Fall 2013 News
This last fall, Montana PBS interviewed two professors from the Department of Geography here at the University on Montana. Dr. Jeffery Gritzner and Lecturer Kevin McManigal were filmed for a PBS special called Degrees of Difference. The theme was friendly conversations around the continuing climate change debate. In the end, their discussion was cut from the aired program, but it can be viewed on the PBS website here: http://watch.montanapbs.org/video/2365116516/. Congratulations to Jeff and Kevin!
Sophia Albov, a Geography Graduate Student, has recently been selected through a competitive process to represent the Finnish American Fulbright Center at the 38th Annual EU-NATO Seminar hosted by the Fulbright Commission in Brussels. The seminar will be held February 9-13, 2014 and has events occurring in both Brussels and Luxembourg. The purpose of the seminar is to explore the functioning of the EU and its relationship with the United States. Sophia, who is currently a Fulbright Graduate Student Grantee in Finland, sees the seminar as an opportunity to deepen her level of understanding of EU institutional arrangements and policies. Her thesis research centers on an analysis of the organic agriculture sector in Finland and farmers’ livelihood prospects under EU policy interventions and directives. Her study specifically looks toward the role of geographical factors and policy arrangements in affecting organic farmers’ experiences in Finland and pays specific attention to EU policies which influence the Finnish organic agricultural sector. For this study Sophia is working in conjunction with the University of Helsinki, University of Eastern Finland, and MTT Agrifood Research. While she is in Finland, she is conducting an extensive series of interviews with key actors in the organic food system. During the upcoming EU-NATO Seminary, Sophia will get to see the EU in action and gain valuable insights into the day-to-day workings of some of Europe’s most influential institutions.
Thanks to all who participated in Geography’s Open House on October 4. Everyone seemed to have a good time enjoying conversation, food, and the nice slide show, courtesy of Will Klaczynski and Rick Graetz. We had alumni from 1970 to 2013 and many classes in between. Thanks to our students for their involvement and participation, and to our faculty, staff and family members, ranging in age from 10 months to 92 years of age. Congratulations to the raffle winners.
The Montana Geographic Alliance Co-Coordinators Sarah J. Halvorson, Professor of Geography, and Heather Almquist, Faculty Affiliate in Geography, received a $27,000 grant from the National Geographic Society Education Foundation. The grant will be used to support curriculum development initiatives, member services, and professional development opportunities for Montana teachers and geography education-related activities in collaboration with various state agencies and nonprofit organizations.
Jeffrey A. Gritzner, Professor Emeritus of Geography, was invited by the University of Denver to serve as Marisco Visiting Scholar, October 30 - November 2. His principle lecture was titled "Inhabiting a Vulnerable Planet." Â Dr. Gritzner also gave a number of talks on environmental change, environmental rehabilitation and sustainability.
Kevin McManigal, Lecturer of GIS in Geography and his students Fred Snyder-Manetti and Carolyne Vowell attended the 2013 The North American Cartographic Information SocietyÂ (NACIS) Conference in Greenville, South Carolina, October 9-12, 2013. Carolyne presented a poster entitled U.S. Wild Horses & Burros: Management Strategies. The poster was well received and fit in very well with entries from the best student cartographers in the nation. Kevin presented a lecture entitled Breaking the Software Demonstration Barrier - Live Data Collection and GIS in the Classroom. The presentation gave practical advice for teaching GIS with on-screen exercises that engage students and challenge them to use GIS for problem solving. Kevin’s lecture closed the education session on the last day of a full week listening to the best academic and professional cartographers sharing their cutting edge research and designs. Hot trends included new tools for web-mapping and the entry of MOOCs (Massive Online Open Courses) into the GIS/Cartography academic discipline.
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