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By the time current undergraduates send their children to college, Earth's population will have increased to more than eight billion people. One or more metropolitan areas in our increasingly crowded world will have experienced a devastating earthquake or volcanic eruption, sea level rise will be inundating low-lying coastal cities such as Jakarta along with whole island nations, energy resources will be less available and more expensive, and our climate will be warmer and characterized by more frequent extreme weather events.

How we choose to plan for and attempt to mitigate these "grand challenges" will have consequences for individuals, nations, and our global socioeconomic and political systems.

The goal of this minor is to dramatically increase geoscience literacy of undergraduate students, including the large majority that do not major in the geosciences, and especially adult learners through the online program, such that they are better positioned to make sustainable decisions in their lives and as part of the broader society.