NC State GeoJourney Course (MEA101 – Summer Session 2)

What is the combined cost of the 3-credit course & trip?

The course participation fee for summer 2020 is $2000. In addition, students will need to enroll in 3 credits of MEA101 during Summer Session 2 at NC State ($922.98). The total per-student out of pocket cost for 3 credits plus the GeoJourney trip expenses is $2,922.98 for residents of North Carolina and $4,881.98 for non-residents.  

Is financial support available?

Possibly. An unfortunate truth is students from minority groups are often underrepresented in the geosciences and other STEM disciplines in comparison to their proportion of the population as a whole. Some have hypothesized that this may in part be due to a lack of significant childhood experience with outdoor spaces. Perhaps participation on the 2020 GeoJourney can help in some small way. We hope to again acquired funding to offer partial-ride scholarships to students from underrepresented populations who are accepted to the 2020 course. In 2019, we were able to partially support the participation of 3 students.

What is the expectation in terms of personal equipment that students will need to supply for the trip?

Students are expected to supply personal clothing, rain gear suitable for hiking, a cold weather jacket (double as a pillow), hiking boots, and basic camping equipment including a backpacking style sleeping bag and insulating ground pad (e.g. Therm-a-rest).  If the student does not already have access to this equipment, it is available for a nominal rental fee from the University Recreational Equipment Rental Center.  We will provide 4-person backpacking style tents to be shared by groups of 3 students.  The trip leaders will provide cooking equipment, food, etc. A detailed packing list will be sent to all participants well in advance of the actual trip.

Are students expected to help out around camp during the evenings?

Yes, the expectation is that all students will assist, on a rotating basis, with meal preparation, cooking, and cleanup around our evening campsites.

Is camping in a tent required, or will we stay in hotels?

Yes. We will primarily be camping in established National Park , State Park, or Forest Service campgrounds, but we will spend two nights in hotels (3rd and last night) and two nights in “glamping” Yurts at Dead Horse Point State Park, near Moab, UT.  Campground and hotel costs are included in the cost of the trip.

The cost for the trip is $2000.  What about the 3-credits of tuition?

In addition to the course fee of $2000, students will also have to pay for 3 credits of tuition and associated University fees at the on-campus rate regardless of the time spent on campus.  The 2020 summer tuition and required university fees for Residents of North Carolina is $922.98 for 3 credits.  For non-residents, 3 credits of tuition and university fees is $2,881.98  The link above details the cost breakdown for the tuition and associated fees charged on a per-credit basis, depending upon whether the student is a resident of North Carolina or another state / Country.  Tuition bills for Summer Session 2 courses are due in early June, 2020.

When and How do I pay the $2,000 course fee?
Students who are accepted into the course must pay the $2000 course fee by check or money order, made out to “NC State University” no later than Friday June 5th to ensure enrollment in the course.  Please indicate on the payment that it is for the “Colorado River GeoJourney”.

The payment should either be be mailed to:

Ms. Brenda Conover, Business Officer
Dept. of Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences
North Carolina State University
Campus Box 8208
Raleigh, NC 27695-8208

Or delivered in person to Ms. Conover at:

Dept. of Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences
2800 Faucette Drive
Jordan Hall, Room 1125
Raleigh, NC 27695
Ph: 919-515-3179 | Email:

I noticed that the dates for the Second Summer Session MEA101 course are June 26 to July 27.  Do I need to be on-campus during this time to participate in the GeoJourney?

No, you do not.  The Second Summer Session at NC State technically runs from June 22 to July 24, for students taking on-campus courses.  We will not adhere to these dates, but we had to use this MEA101 course in order for students to earn the 3 credits in Physical Geology for participating in the GeoJourney during the summer.  The on-campus portion of the Colorado River GeoJourney begins the afternoon of Thursday, July 23.

If I have paid the course fee, but need to cancel my enrollment in the course, will I be reimbursed.

  • If you need to cancel before June 5th, 2020, you will be reimbursed in full.
  • If you cancel between the 5th and 23rd of June (one month before the course begins), you will be reimbursed $1,585.00, which is the course fee less the non-refundable per-person cost required by the airline to secure our round-trip airfare.  This amount is $415.
  • If you cancel after June 23rd you will forfeit the course fee of $2000.00.
  • Reimbursement of Payment for the 3-credits of tuition is handled through the University’s Student Services Center

Are there textbooks associated with the course and approximately how much do they cost?

Yes. This course is considered a substitute for the MEA 101 (Introductory Geology) lecture course.  There are two assigned textbooks.


1. Exploring Geology, by Stephen Reynolds and coauthors (2016 – 4th ed.), digital e-book available for $41.25 as part of the NC State All-In textbook program.

2. Where the Water Goes: Life and Death Along the Colorado River, by David Owen (2017).  Retail price is $15.


3. Ancient Landscapes of the Colorado Plateau, by Ron Blakey and Wayne Ranney (2008).  Retail price via Amazon is $30.00.

Will I be able to charge my electronic devices on the GeoJourney trip?

Yes. We will be able to charge devices in the vehicles, at hotels, and some of the campgrounds. It might be a good ideal to bring along a small external battery pack for charging electronic devices, such as smart phones, digital cameras, etc. in the event that we go a day or two between locations with land-based power outlets.

Will we have access to bathroom facilities and showers along the GeoJourney?

Yes. Every campground will have bathrooms and running water. Some will have showers. For those that do not, we will have several 1-person private shower tents set up with solar sun showers that we will “charge” during the day so that there is warm-to-hot water available for washing up at the end of each day.

Don’t see a question in the FAQ section that you would like answered? Email Professor Wegmann directly.