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Welcome to the Geological Society of Minnesota

The Geological Society of Minnesota is a public-spirited, nonprofit educational organization that has been in operation since 1938. Our ongoing mission has been to promote public interest and supply educational support in the geological sciences. We do this by sponsoring free lectures and labs at the University of Minnesota, conducting statewide and regional field trips, holding classroom presentations for schools, maintaining a media library, publishing relevant information for public distribution, and maintaining and expanding upon a series of geological markers located throughout the state.

GSM's exciting, illustrated Seminars are presented by leading professionals in their fields of Geology or Earth Science. These engaging talks are free and open to the public, and are especially valuable for enthusiastic learners from secondary school students to adults. A question and answer opportunity is always included. Where else can you enjoy an intriguing exchange with a leading scientist or educator? Our novice-friendly labs demonstrate at a comfortable pace the ideas and principles of geology and earth science. They allow an involved, hands-on learning experience for beginners, or a helpful refresher for the seasoned enthusiast. These instructive sessions are also free and open to the public. Where else can you actively practice science, under expert guidance, for free?

Next GSM Lecture:

Monday, April 27, 2015 @ 7:00 PM

The Geoheritage of Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula

by William Rose, PhD, and Erika Vye,

Michigan Technological University


University of Minnesota, East Bank campus,

Room 3-210 Keller Hall (Electrical Engineering/Computer Science Bldg.)

200 Union St SE

Minneapolis MN 55455   Map    Direction to Keller Hall

Note: same location as previous lectures this year.

We wish to share our recent efforts and results for communicating the geoheritage of Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula, a geographical region with a fascinating geologic and human history. We will present on the development of a varied partnership, where each stakeholder has a valued role in helping to engage the general public in the importance of Keweenaw geology and history. We also plan to highlight some of the interesting areas that might be included in a GSM field trip to the Keweenaw during July, 2015. Finally, we also welcome an open discussion on the future of geoheritage, geodiversity, and geoconservation, both regionally and nationally.   


William Rose, of Michigan Technological University, is a recently retired research professor in the field of volcanology and remote sensing. After 45 years in the Keweenaw, Dr. Rose's connection to its strong geoheritage has prompted him to focus on communicating Earth science to the broader public. This has generated new interpretive activities and tools paramount for engaging the public in learning about how and why their place has come to be the way it is. Dr. Rose leads place-based geoheritage education programs for the Keweenaw Peninsula and Isle Royale and is active in expanding these successes to a broader georegion:

Erika Vye is a PhD candidate in the Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences Department at Michigan Technological University. Her main research goals are focused on improved communication of Earth science to the broader public. She is particularly interested in peoples’ connection to the Earth, the landscape, and how that ultimately guides their decisions on land use issues. She is active in the advancement of geoheritage, geoscience education and the development of a proposal for a Global Geopark designation in the Keweenaw Peninsula.


Keep date open for the Spring Banquet & Silent Auction on May 4th, 2015; 5 - 8:30PM. Click here details 

Seminars and Labs

The schedule of seminars and labs for 2014-2015 in now available click here . Note that the seminars start a a new time this year, 7:00 PM 

Field Trips

Next field trip: 

During the months of May through October, GSM conducts a series of professionally-guided, statewide and regional field trips. These are one to three day excursions made to points of geologic interest not usually experienced by the casual traveler. They afford a very memorable and satisfying learning experience as there are always plenty of hands-on and question-answering opportunities. A comaraderie with enthusiastic learners and people curious about their natural environment is always a reward in itself. There is a small charge for any shared expense, and a liability waiver must be signed for each participant.


Speakers for metro area elementary schools are available through the Public Service Committee to help enrich the education of young learners, particularly the 2nd to 4th grade levels.


Membership in the society is open to anyone with an interest in geology. The benefits of membership include

  • Extensive Media Library - GSM maintains a collection of more than 125 geological videos and a growing number of interactive, multimedia CD-ROMs for both windows and Macintosh computers. These are available to the members at lectures or through the mail for a nominal rental fee.
  • GSM Newsletter - A quarterly publication containing announcements of upcoming activities, interesting and informative articles on the earth sciences, GSM project and activity reports, and general club news and notices.
  • GSM Directory - An annual book that is a handy information resource, and makes it easy to access your organization.
  • Rocky Roots ... Three Geology Walking Tours of Downtown St. Paul - A free copy of this popular guidebook.
  • The opportunity to meet others of diverse backgrounds who share an enthusiasm for learning and a curiosity for the natural world around them.
  • The rewarding feeling of supporting a public-spirited, nonprofit organization dedicated to public education.
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