Emeritus professor Peter Birkeland began his geology studies in 1955 at the University of Washington, where he became interested in geomorphology. His professional career began in 1962, when he received his PhD from Stanford University. He took a professorship at the University of California--Berkeley, and in 1967 he moved to the University of Colorado, where he became a pioneer in the new field of soil-geomorphology. Throughout his career he was a teacher, researcher, and author of many publications. A major accomplishment was receiving the Kirk Bryan Award (1988) of the Geological Society of America (GSA) for his book Soils and Geomorphology. Another of Pete’s books, Putnam's Geology, was an introductory text co-authored with Ed Larson. Throughout his tenure in Geological Sciences, Pete inspired and mentored many graduate and undergraduate students.
To provide graduate students in Geological Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder funds for research and tuition.