Majors in Sustainability
Undergraduate Majors with Sustainability Focus or Emphasis
Architecture is an interdisciplinary, collaborative program that embraces spirited, socially progressive, and environmentally responsive design.
Bachelor's Degree with Individual Concentration (BDIC) allows sustainability-oriented students to create their own interdisciplinary majors, drawing from areas such as environmental science, sustainable agriculture & food systems, climate & energy studies, public health & nutrition, public policy & planning, green building & design, engineering, socially conscious management & entrepreneurship, and many more.
This major offers a sustainability-focused curriculum, providing students with a grounding in general issues of sustainability and the built environment and in depth knowledge of subjects including green building practices, energy efficiency and sustainable materials.
The Civil and Environmental Engineering major preparesstudents to design a sustainable future. A key to sustainability is ensuring our water, energy, building construction and transportation systems are conducive to environmental sustainability. Engineers also design solutions to environmental problems that emerge as the human footprint expands.
The Economics department advocates sustainable economic policies for developing as well as postindustrial economies. The broad spectrum of faculty, scholarship, research interests and course offerings in Asia, Africa, the OECD, and Eastern Europe provide ample opportunity for students to explore what sustainability requires with regards to formulating economic policy.
Environmental Science offers a sustainability-focused curriculum that provides students with rigorous interdisciplinary professional training in environmental systems, encompassing an understanding of the physical, chemical, and biological processes of the Earth and their effects on living organisms, while focusing on finding sustainable solutions to today's environmental problems.
Food Science has a major role in sustainability initiatives. Extending shelf life of both packaged and fresh foods through novel preservation, innovative packaging, and smarter handling of fresh produce can help to reduce the amount of food waste sent to landfills.
The Hospitality and Tourism Management program offers undergraduate and MBA-level electives in Sustainable Service Management, as well as a capstone course for seniors in Travel and Tourism Policy and Planning, which covers the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of tourism.
The Management major includes courses in sustainable business practices, social entrepreneurship, and environmental law. The department's vision is to begin offering a certificate in Sustainable Business Practices during academic year 2012/13.
Natural Resources Conservation offers a sustainability-focused curriculum, in which students learn about the ecology of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and how these systems can be managed to conserve biodiversity and protect ecosystem functions while providing sustainable benefits to society. Students select among six possible concentrations within the major: Environmental Conservation; Fisheries Ecology and Conservation; Forest Ecology and Conservation; Urban Forestry and Arboriculture; Water Resources; and Wildlife Ecology and Conservation. Descriptions are found under 'Concentrations' below.
The Nutrition Department offers a Nutrition in a Global Society track for undergraduates,enabling students to incorporate courses related to food security and sustainability issues.
Plant, Soils, and Insect Sciences offers a sustainability-focused curriculum with three concentrations: Sustainable Food and Farming, Turfgrass Science and Management, and Sustainable Horticulture.
Resource Economics is focused on choice and an important aspect of this are the tradeoffs associated with sustainability. We currently offer a 2-semester upper level course that focuses on economic decision making tools used to evaluate sustainability projects, and gives students an opportunity to conduct research or work on a project related to sustainability.
The University Without Walls (UWW) gives adult students the opportunity to finish their bachelor’s degree 100% online with a focus in Sustainability Studies. UWW Sustainability Studies students design their own programs of study, taking courses in a range of disciplines, including food and farming, sustainable business and entrepreneurship, public health, and journalism and communications.
Sustainability-focused Concentrations and Certificates
Environmental Conservation is one of six possible concentration areas within the Natural Resources Conservation undergraduate major. It is designed for students who are interested in developing a general educational focus in the broad area of Environmental Studies for one of the many areas of the environment and conservation not directly covered by the other five concentrations in the NRC major.
Fisheries Ecology and Conservation is one of six possible concentration areas within the Natural Resources Conservation undergraduate major. Its focus is on aquatic systems and their inhabitants: how to manage, conserve and restore fish and aquatic animal populations and their habitats; how to develop sustainable fisheries programs; effects of land use, water flow and contaminants on aquatic ecosystem health and fish community structure; and how to conserve and enhance biological diversity.
Forest Ecology and Conservation is one of six possible concentration areas within the Natural Resources Conservation undergraduate major. The goal of forestry, especially in the complex urbanized northeast, is to sustainably maintain the provision of the full suite of forest benefits for society: watershed protection, wilderness and other forms of outdoor recreation opportunities, maintaining biodiversity of both plants and animals, sustainably producing wood, paper, and fiber products to meet societal needs, and even controlling global climate.
The iCons program offers a sustainability-focused integrative science curriculum, teaching students how to apply basic science and engineering concepts to problems of global significance, including consideration of environmental and economic facets of current problems.
The Sustainable Food and Farming Certificate will help you prepare for a life and livelihood in support of viable farms, farm families, and healthy food for all.
Urban Forestry and Arboriculture is one of six possible concentration areas within the Natural Resources Conservation undergraduate major. Urban Forestry & Arboriculture involves the sustainable management of trees in cities and suburbs, where more than 80% of people in the world live. Urban foresters and arborists work to ensure healthy populations of trees to provide sustained benefits to millions of people.
Water Resources is one of six possible concentration areas within the Natural Resources Conservation undergraduate major. Water is essential to life and is a critical resource that needs careful management to sustain human populations and ecosystems. This concentration emphasizes skills in understanding and applying concepts to manage water resources with applications related to ecosystem impacts, water quality, climate change, storm water, and water supply.
Wildlife Ecology and Conservation is one of six possible concentration areas within the Natural Resources Conservation undergraduate major. The concentration emphasizes the biology and ecology of wildlife; how to sustainably manage, conserve and restore wildlife populations and their habitats; how to resolve human-wildlife conflict and wildlife disease problems; and how to conserve and enhance biological diversity.