Glenn Shaw - Geological Engineering Faculty - Montana Tech

Geological Engineering


Glenn D. Shaw, Ph.D

Glenn Shaw

Professor and Department Head
MG 213E

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I was born and raised in Fairbanks, Alaska where I learned to appreciate the outdoors, nature, and cold climates. Although I spent the majority of my growing up years in Alaska, my father was a professor and took sabbatical leaves where I lived in Switzerland and Arizona. Since leaving Alaska I've lived in Utah, Minnesota, California, and South Korea. I've lived in Butte since 2009, which is sort of like coming to my second home because my parents grew up here and my grandfather received a B.S. and M.S. in Metallurgical Engineering from Montana Tech.


  • Ph.D., Environmental Systems, University of California, Merced, 2009
  • M.S., Geological Engineering, University of Utah, 2000
  • B.S., Engineering Geology, Brigham Young University, 1997

Research Interests

My research focuses on investigating groundwater and surface water interactions in mountain systems. Both my M.S. and Ph.D. research focused on using environmental tracers and isotopes to investigate how groundwater interacts in with surface water, but current research also includes physical hydrologic field methods and groundwater flow modeling. I am interested in estimating groundwater residence times, cycling rates and flows, as well as identifying source waters within mountain catchments. Since 2015 my research focus has expanded to studying how river restoration impacts mountains rivers.  Past projects have included contaminant transport, mine hydrology, leaky irrigation canals, mountain front recharge, and lake/groundwater hydrology.

Non-Research Academic Interests

I enjoy mentoring students in both teaching and research. This includes teaching and working with students to the point that they become independent thinkers and learn how to solve problems. It may be building on homework assignments in a class so that they can successfully complete a design project or it may be aiding in the thought process for completing a research project.

Selected Honors & Awards

  • Montana Tech Faculty Merit Awards (2015, 2018, & 2022)
  • Faculty Achievement Award (2021)
  • Residence Life Faculty Member of the Year Award (2021)
  • Montana Tech homecoming Grand Marshall (2016)
  • USFS Chief's Excellence in Research Award (2012)
  • UC Merced Environmental Systems Outstanding Ph.D. Dissertation (2009)

Career in Brief

  • August 2020-present, Department Head, Department of Geological Engineering, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
  • August 2019-August 2020, Professor, Dept. of Geological Engineering, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
  • August, 2014-present, Associate Professor, Dept. of Geological Engineering, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
  • August 2014-August 2019, Associate Professor, Dept. of Geological Engineering, Montana Tech, Butte MT
  • December 2009-August 2010, Assistant Research Professor, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology, Montana Tech, Butte, MT
  • May 2009-November 2009, Air Quality Scientist, Sequoia National Forest, U.S. Forest Service, Clovis, CA
  • August 2009-December 2010, Instructor, University of California, Merced, School of Engineering
  • August 2003-August 2004, Associate Research Hydrologist, University of California, Merced, School of Engineering
  • March 2001-August 2003, Geological Engineer, CH2M HILL Salt Lake City, UT
  • January 2000-March 2001, Geologist, AMEC Earth and Environmental, Salt Lake City, UT

Courses Taught

  • GEO 101 Physical Geology
  • GEOE 104 Introduction to Geological Engineering
  • GEOE 420 Hydrogeology for Engineers (including lab)
  • GEOE 422 Groundwater Flow Modeling (including lab)
  • GEOE 429 Field Hydrogeology
  • GEOE 499W Geological Engineering Design Project
  • GEOE 520 Advance Hydrogeology (including lab)
  • GEOE 528 Contaminant Transport (including lab)

Selected Publications 

Names in bold correspond to graduate students

Peer Reviewed

Bobst A., Payn R., Shaw G. (2022) Groundwater-mediated influences of beaver-mimicry stream restoration: A modeling analysis. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association. DOI

Prudhomme KD, Khalil MA, Shaw GD, Speece MA, Zodrow KR, Malloy TM (2019) Integrated geophysical methods to characterize subsidence features in Butte, Montana, U.S.A. Applied Geophysics. 164, 87-105.

Orubu A, Khalil MA, Rutherford B, Shaw G, Gebril A, Carstarphen C (2018) Geophysical investigation of dewatering in Lolo Creek, southwest Missoula, Montana, USA. Journal of Applied Geophysics. 155, 149-161.

Schweizer D, Cisneros R, Traina S, Ghezzehei T, Shaw G (2017) Using national air quality standards for fine particulate matter to assess regional wildland fire smoke and air quality, Journal of Environmental Management, 201, 345-356.

Liu, F, Conklin MH, Conrad ME, Shaw G (2017) Insights into hydrologic and hydrochemical processes based on concentration-discharge and end-member mixing analyses in the mid-Merced River basin, Sierra Nevada, California, Water Resources Research, 53, 832-850.

Shaw GD, Mitchell KL, Gammons CH (2016) Estimating groundwater inflow and leakage outflow for an intermontane lake with a structurally complex geology: Georgetown Lake in Montana USA, Hydrogeology Journal, 25, 135-149.

Schweizer D., Cisneros R., Shaw G. (2016) A comparative analysis of temporary and permanent beta attenuations monitors: The importance of understanding data and equipment limitations when creating PM2.5 air quality health advisories. Atmospheric Pollution Research. 7, 865-875.

Cisneros R., Schweizer D., Preisler H., Bennett DH, Shaw G., Bytnerowicz A. (2014) Spatial and seasonal patterns of particulate matter less than 2.5 microns in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, California. Atmospheric Pollution Research. 5, 581-590.

Shaw G., Conklin MH, Nimz GJ, Liu F. (2014) Groundwater and surface water flow to the Merced River, Yosemite Valley, California: 36Cl and Cl- Evidence. Water Resources Research. 50(3), 1943-1959.

Shaw G., Cisneros R., Schweizer D., Sickman J., Fenn M. (2013) Critical loads of acid deposition for wilderness lakes in the Sierra Nevada (California) estimated by the steady state water chemistry model. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution. 225:1804.

Shaw G., White E., Gammons C., (2013) Characterizing groundwater-lake interactions and its impact on lake water quality. Journal of Hydrology. 492. 69-78.

Non Peer Reviewed Reports

Abdo G., Butler J., Myse T., Wheaton J., Snyder D., Metesh J., Shaw G. (2013) Hydrogeologic Investigation of the Beaverhead River Study Area. Groundwater Investigations Program, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology Open File Report. 132 p. 

Shaw G. White E., (2013) Nutrients and Groundwater-Lake Interactions at Georgetown Reservoir, MT. Montana Department of Environmental Quality Report. 40 p.

Shaw G. (2011) Water Quality Review: Sierra Nevada (2011) Lake Monitoring and Critical Load Assessment. U.S. Forest Service Region 5 Air Quality Program. 32 p.

Personal Interests

I enjoy hiking, running, or going to the gym to un-stress. Since the summer of 2015 I have DJed a weekly two-hour volunteer radio show on Butte America’s local community radio station, where I play share my favorite music. I also travel all over the western U.S. to attend concerts. I enjoy cooking and studying Korean.