Mission & Methodology

Mission of the Jackson School

The University of Texas at Austin’s Jackson School of Geosciences provides education and research to enhance our knowledge of the Earth.  GeoFORCE, a K-12 outreach program of the Jackson School, is designed to increase the number of students pursuing STEM degrees in college and moving into the future high-tech workforce.


  1. Target rural areas of southwest Texas and inner-city Houston that have historically generated a very low percentage of students who pursue college degrees and an even lower percentage of students who pursue degrees in math or science.  These target areas have a high percentage of minority students, thus providing an opportunity for GeoFORCE to increase minority participation in science and math.
  2. Identify at an early age (eighth grade) students who have shown a proclivity to excel in school and engage them over four years.
  3. Present students with opportunities to experience the excitement of science outside the classroom through spectacular summer field trips each year of the four years they are involved in the program.
  4. Provide the students with examples of exciting careers that await those who stay the course and obtain degrees in math or science.
  5. Continue to motivate and monitor participating students each year of their high school career and into college.
    • GeoFORCE 11th Graders visit Big Obsidian Flow in Oregon Summer 2014

      “The most significant thing that GeoFORCE has taught me goes far beyond any scientific knowledge that I’ve acquired.  Through GeoFORCE I have learned that there are far more possibilities in life than I could ever have imagined.”