Earth 133 - Geologic Field Seminar of the Colorado Plateau

May 25 - June 8, 2024

Earth 133 - Geologic Field Seminar of the Colorado Plateau is a fifteen-day excursion of the National Parks of northern Arizona, Colorado, and Utah: Grand Canyon, Glen Canyon Dam, Four Corners, Navajo, Monument Valley, Natural Bridges. Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Escalante Petrified Forest, Bryce, Zion, and much, much more! This course is designed as an "honors level" field experience where principles and concepts learned in first year geology classes can be applied and interpreted in the field.

        Student looking at rock           class at sunset

Instruction follows a seminar format wherein each student is responsible for researching, developing, and presenting to the class a topic relevant to the parks we visit.   Students are required to keep a field notebook, take morning quizzes, and actively participate in geologic discussions, critiques, and arguments. This is truly a unique opportunity for you to visit, interpret, and understand some of the outstanding geologic sites of this world.

Instructional Staff

Stephanie Mendes and Bill Dinklage will provide instruction throughout the trip.

Support Staff

Kevin McNichol, Field Lab Technician, organizes and supervises the logistics of the trip and camp set-up.  He is assisted by a group of volunteer field trip veterans.

Texts, Course Credit, and Grading

Required: Geologic History of Utah, Hintze
Recommended: Ancient Landscapes of the Colorado Plateau, Blakey and Ranney

You will receive 4 units of credit for taking Earth 133.  Grades are based on your morning quizzes (50%), seminar presentations (40%), and your active and enthusiastic participation (10%) on the trip.

Work Crews

There are two ways in which you are expected and encouraged to participate in the running of the camp:  a) daily help with general camp chores, and b) a one-time 24-hour “on” period of Woolly assistance, meal preparation, and KP duties.  Generally, your “on” cycle will start the evening of your presentation and lasts for 24 hours.


You must have completed at least one geology course with a grade of B or better.  Preferences are given to first-time students who have completed a five-day field trip with an A grade.

Depart - Saturday, May 25, 2024 @ 8 a.m. (Luggage leaves the previous day.)

Return -  Saturday, June 8, 2024, late afternoon - early evening

Cost - $215 - Some scholarship assistance is available. Email an instructor for details.

Transportation - SBCC vans (no private vehicles).

Food - Meals are prepared in our field kitchen by staff with student help.

Accommodations - Camping in National Monument and Park group sites.

If you feel that you (and the other students on the trip) would benefit from your participation, please complete the Request to Participate form and return it to Stephanie Mendes as soon as possible to secure your spot on the trip.
There is a limited amount of scholarship money available to qualified students.  Scholarships are based on need and merit. Turn your scholarship form into Stephanie Mendes as soon as it is complete as they will be awarded on a rolling basis. All scholarship applications are due no later than Friday, May 17, 2024. 
There will be an organizational meeting for the trip Saturday, May 11, 2024 @ 10:00 - 12:00 pm at SBCC. If you are planning on participating on the trip, please set this date aside. If you absolutely cannot attend, contact Stephanie Mendes as soon as possible.
May 11-24, resources will be available for students to begin preparing their presentations for the trip. Presentations must be completed prior to trip departure on May 25. Tutors, instructors, and preparation materials are provided. 


Email Stephanie Mendes!