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Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania

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Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania

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Matthew Hess

Bloomsburg, Pa.
Geography and planning

Matthew Hess Photo
The staff and faculty remember your name and are always available to help. Their doors are always open.
Matthew Hess is a well-balanced student, equally focused on the inside and outside of the classroom. It’s a fitting trait for this Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania geography and planning major. Hess not only excels at his studies - carrying a 4.0 GPA as an Honors student - but is passionate and committed to the earth and its environment, as evident by his numerous research activities in support of that passion.
Hess has been instrumental in collaborations among the university and Town of Bloomsburg and Columbia County. He has worked with two professors in researching the parking availability for downtown Bloomsburg. Also, he volunteers at the Columbia County GIS office assisting its staff in updating land boundaries and subdivisions mapping. One of his next goals is to work with the town on education of litter being dumped into storm water drains and its effect on the Susquehanna River.
"The geography and planning program here allows me the opportunity to help others and work toward sustainable development, as well as actively preparing me to make that dream a reality,” Hess says.
As a sophomore, Hess was elected president of the Geography and Planning Society and currently serves as vice president of the Mapping, Planning Environmental and Rock Society, as well as being a member of the Green Campus Initiatives Committee. He was awarded a very competitive undergraduate research opportunity at Clark University in Worcester, Mass., this past summer and will present his research at the national meeting of the Association of American Geographers this spring in Tampa.

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Located along the banks of the Susquehanna River, Bloomsburg is the only incorporated town in Pennsylvania and the county seat of Columbia County. Just one block from campus, downtown Bloomsburg has a variety of stores, restaurants and professional offices. Shopping centers and major chain stores are located a short drive from campus. With more than 12,000 year-round residents, Bloomsburg is a college town with many family friendly enhancements, including Town Park, athletic fields, a swimming pool and picnic pavilions, and events such as the annual ice cream festival and summer concert series. More than 150 clubs and organizations are represented in the community that boasts a modern YMCA, 80-bed Bloomsburg Hospital and 30,000-volume public library. Arts and culture organizations include the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble, a professional resident company housed in the Alvina Krause Theatre on Center Street, where Bloomsburg University Players stage productions. Annual celebrations include the Renaissance Jamboree in April and the Bloomsburg Fair in September.

Female student in lab.


Bloomsburg University offers 56 undergraduate programs and 20 graduate programs to nearly10,000 students under the instruction of 390 full-time faculty, most with doctoral degrees. Average class size is 32 students, resulting in a 21:1 student to faculty ratio. The student population, which is 58 percent female and 14 percent minority, has access to more than 200 student organizations, nearly 30 intramural athletics and 26 club sports.

Most Popular Programs

Education, business, nursing, speech pathology, criminal justice, medical imaging, biology, mass communication and computer forensics.

Highlighted Programs

Accounting – This AACSB-accredited program possesses a nearly 100 percent job placement rate for the past 10 years. Many of the world's leading accounting firms, along with many public and private organizations, recruit at Bloomsburg. The faculty all have doctoral degrees and eight are professionally certified. Collectively, they possess diverse work experience in public and private accounting with major companies and small businesses, government agencies and not-for-profit organizations.

Chemistry – This American Chemical Society-recognized program offers students four options of study to include biochemistry, chemistry education, clinical chemistry and nanotechnology – a collaborative program with Pennsylvania State University. Chemistry graduates have repeatedly demonstrated the quality of their preparation by the high level of performance in graduate chemistry programs, professional medicine programs, secondary school teaching, and many chemically related industrial firms. The biochemistry option is an excellent choice for students interested in a career in medicine or veterinary school and as a stepping-stone into forensic chemistry.

Master’s in Special Education – This flexible NCATE-accredited graduate program addresses the need for dually certified special educators and for special education related field supervisors in public schools, intermediate units, private schools, state centers and hospitals. This program enables students to experience a combination of content knowledge, as well as practical application through in-class practice coupled with numerous field experiences.

Intercollegiate Athletics

Men's Sports
Baseball, basketball, cross country, football, soccer, swimming, tennis, track and field and wrestling (Division I).

Women's Sports
Basketball, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis and track and field.