Environmental Studies and Sustainability

Major: Environmental Studies and Sustainability
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Arts (BA)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Total Credit Hours: 183.0
Co-op Options: Three Co-op (Five years); One Co-op (Four years); No Co-op (Four years)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 03.0103

Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 19-2041

About the Program

The BA in Environmental Studies and Sustainability (ENSS) is administered in the Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science (BEES). It is a multidisciplinary degree that takes advantage of existing courses in both the Arts and Sciences to educate graduates who will be able to work in government agencies, corporations, and nonprofit organizations who develop, implement, or are affected by environmental policies.

Objective

The objective of this major is to educate students so that they will be successful in finding solutions to environmental challenges that all societies will face in the 21st century. Graduates will be educated with the goal of thinking in terms of cross-cultural ideas and dialogue. In that way they will be encouraged to help people of all cultures understand environmental problems and act in the area of environmental stewardship.

The BA in Environmental Studies and Sustainability will provide graduates with a broad understanding of environmental science, policy development, needs of decision makers, attorneys and engineers, urban and international concerns, and current environmental issues. Important to any future position  in fields of environmental policy, planning, and sustainability, the program builds on communication skills, collaboration abilities and team building, a “customer” orientation, creativity and innovative thinking ability, analytical ability, critical thinking and problem solving ability, a work orientation with professionalism and a positive attitude, occupation-specific skill and knowledge through co-op, and leadership ability. Students may opt to specialize in different study tracks including Policy, Government, and Business; Social Awareness and Action, and Scientific Inquiry.

Drexel Advantage

There is a distinct advantage to a student in undertaking an Environmental Studies and Sustainability degree at Drexel. Drexel University was one of the first universities in the nation to establish an undergraduate environmental science degree in the late 1960s. Since that time, Drexel has expanded to areas of environmental policy and sustainability. Over the long history of the program, Drexel has established an extensive network of co-op employers who value Drexel students, including federal and state governments, consulting firms, research institutions, non-profit organizations, and industry, with work ranging from biological field sampling to developing policy with governmental decision makers, action plans for non-profit organizations, or model environmental strategies with industrial sustainability offices. Drexel students take advantage of the co-op program to both get more extensive experience and get paid while doing so. By graduation, students' resumes include real-world experiences.

Degree Requirements

General Requirements
CIVC 101Introduction to Civic Engagement1.0
COOP 101Career Management and Professional Development *1.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
or ENGL 111 English Composition I
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
or ENGL 112 English Composition II
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
or ENGL 113 English Composition III
MATH 101Introduction to Analysis I4.0
MATH 107Probability and Statistics for Liberal Arts3.0
UNIV S101The Drexel Experience1.0
UNIV H201Looking Forward: Academics and Careers1.0
Social and Behavioral Sciences
SOC 101Introduction to Sociology3.0
or ANTH 101 Introduction to Cultural Diversity
PSY 101General Psychology I3.0
PSCI 110American Government4.0
Social Behavior elective3.0
Physical and Natural Sciences
BIO 109Biological Diversity, Ecology & Evolution3.0
BIO 110Biological Diversity, Ecology and Evolution Laboratory1.0
ENVS 101Introduction to Environmental Science5.0
ENVS 230General Ecology3.0
ENSS 275Global Climate Change3.0
or ENVS 289 Global Warming, Biodiversity and Your Future
GEO 201 [WI] Earth Systems Processes3.0
Humanities and Fine Arts
Humanities & Fine Arts Electives6.0
COM 317 [WI] Environmental Communication3.0
or COM 320 Science Writing
PHIL 340Environmental Ethics3.0
or PHIL 341 Environmental Philosophy
Diversity Electives6.0
International Studies6.0
Foreign Language8.0
Students must complete at least 8 credits of a foreign language and, at minimum, must complete the 103 level of the target language (or beyond if they place higher).
ENSS Core Requirements
ECON 201Principles of Microeconomics4.0
ECON 202Principles of Macroeconomics4.0
ENSS 120Introduction to Environmental Studies3.0
ENSS 244Sociology of the Environment4.0
ENSS 283Introduction to Environmental Policy3.0
ENSS 285Introduction to Urban Planning3.0
ENSS 326Cities and Sustainability3.0
ENSS 346Environmental Justice4.0
ENVS 260Environmental Science and Society3.0
PBHL 101Public Health 1013.0
PSCI 284Environmental Politics4.0
Modeling and Research
ENVS 308GIS and Environmental Modeling3.0
SOC 241Research Design: Qualitative Methods4.0
SOC 242Research Design: Quantitative Methods4.0
Major Electives - choose from the list below21.0
Societies In Transition: The Impact of Modernization and the Third World
Culture and the Environment
Environmental Crime
Campaigns for Health & Environment
Environmental Communication
Film, Celebrity and the Environmental Movement
Science Writing
Grant Writing
Nonprofit Communication
Microeconomics
Public Finance
Resource and Environmental Economics
Delaware River Issues and Policy
Community and Ecosystem Ecology
Energy and the Environment: Iceland
Introduction to Environmental Chemistry
Tropical Field Studies
Conservation Biology
Aquatic Ecology
Wetland Ecology
Biogeography
Urban Ecology
Environmental Assessment
Environmental and Ecological Remediation
Ecology of the New Jersey Pine Barrens
Restoration Ecology
Marine Ecology
Chemistry of the Environment
Biodiversity
Natural Disasters
Introduction to Oceanography
Environmental Geology
The Study of Science, Technology, and Environment in History
Disaster in Global History
Themes in Global Environmental History
Empire and Environment
The History of Climate Change
Transnational History of Science, Technology and Environment
Epidemiology in Public Health
Overview of Issues in Global Health
Introduction to Health & Human Rights
Introduction to Community Health
Environmental and Occupational Health
The World's Water
Weather I: Climate and Global Change
Social Development: A Global Approach
Political Theory from Below
Politics of Environment and Health
International Environmental Politics
The Politics of Food
Psychology of Sustainability
Sociology of Global Health
Development and Underdevelopment in the Global South
Globalization
Sociology of Disasters
Classical Social Theory
Contemporary Social Theory
Computer-Assisted Data Analysis
Social Movements
Senior Sequence
ENVS 441 [WI] Issues in Global Change I: Seminar2.0
ENVS 442Issues in Global Change II: Research2.0
ENVS 443Issues in Global Change III: Synthesis2.0
Free Electives24.0
Total Credits183.0

Writing-Intensive Course Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must pass three writing-intensive courses after their freshman year. Two writing-intensive courses must be in a student's major. The third can be in any discipline. Students are advised to take one writing-intensive class each year, beginning with the sophomore year, and to avoid “clustering” these courses near the end of their matriculation. Transfer students need to meet with an academic advisor to review the number of writing-intensive courses required to graduate.

A "WI" next to a course in this catalog may indicate that this course can fulfill a writing-intensive requirement. For the most up-to-date list of writing-intensive courses being offered, students should check the Writing Intensive Course List at the University Writing Program. Students scheduling their courses can also conduct a search for courses with the attribute "WI" to bring up a list of all writing-intensive courses available that term.

Sample Plan of Study

4 year, No co-op

First Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ENGL 101 or 1113.0BIO 1093.0ENGL 103 or 1133.0VACATION
ENSS 1203.0BIO 1101.0MATH 1073.0 
ENVS 1015.0CIVC 1011.0SOC 101 or ANTH 1013.0 
MATH 1014.0ENGL 102 or 1123.0Foreign Language4.0 
UNIV S1011.0PSY 1013.0Free elective4.0 
 Foreign Language4.0  
 16 15 17 0
Second Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ENSS 2833.0ENSS 2444.0COM 3173.0VACATION
ENVS 2603.0ENSS 275 or ENVS 2893.0ECON 2014.0 
PBHL 1013.0ENVS 2303.0ENSS 2853.0 
PSCI 1104.0ENVS 3083.0UNIV H2011.0 
 Free Elective3.0Free Elective3.0 
 13 16 14 0
Third Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ECON 2024.0PHIL 340 or 3413.0ENSS 3263.0VACATION
GEO 2013.0SOC 2414.0SOC 2424.0 
PSCI 2844.0Major Elective3.0Major Electives6.0 
Major Elective3.0Free Elective3.0Diversity Elective3.0 
Humanities/Fine Arts Elective3.0Humanities/Fine Arts Elective3.0  
 17 16 16 0
Fourth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCredits 
ENSS 3464.0ENVS 4422.0ENVS 4432.0 
ENVS 4412.0Major Elective3.0Major Elective3.0 
Major Elective3.0Diversity Elective3.0International Elective3.0 
SOC/Behavior Elective3.0International Elective3.0Free Electives6.0 
Free Elective3.0Free Elective3.0  
 15 14 14 
Total Credits 183

 4 year, 1 co-op

First Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ENGL 101 or 1113.0BIO 1093.0COOP 1011.0VACATION
ENSS 1203.0BIO 1101.0ENGL 103 or 1133.0 
ENVS 1015.0CIVC 1011.0MATH 1073.0 
MATH 1014.0ENGL 102 or 1123.0SOC 101 or ANTH 1013.0 
UNIV S1011.0PSY 1013.0Foreign Language4.0 
 Foreign Language4.0Free Elective3.0 
 16 15 17 0
Second Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ENSS 2833.0ENSS 2444.0COM 3173.0ECON 2024.0
ENVS 2603.0ENVS 2303.0ECON 2014.0GEO 2013.0
PBHL 1013.0ENVS 275 or 2893.0ENSS 2853.0PSCI 2844.0
PSCI 1104.0ENVS 3083.0UNIV H2011.0Major Elective3.0
 Free Elective3.0Free Elective3.0Humanities/Fine Arts Elective3.0
 13 16 14 17
Third Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
PHIL 340 or 3413.0ENSS 3263.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
SOC 2414.0SOC 2424.0  
Major Elective3.0Major Electives6.0  
Humanities/Fine Arts Elective3.0Diversity Elective3.0  
Free Elective3.0   
 16 16 0 0
Fourth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCredits 
ENSS 3464.0ENVS 4422.0ENVS 4432.0 
ENVS 4412.0Major Elective3.0Major Elective3.0 
Major Elective3.0Diversity Elective3.0International Elective3.0 
SOC/Behavior Elective3.0International Elective3.0Free Electives6.0 
Free Elective3.0Free Elective3.0  
 15 14 14 
Total Credits 183

  5 year, 3 co-op

First Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ENGL 101 or 1113.0BIO 1093.0COOP 1011.0VACATION
ENSS 1203.0BIO 1101.0ENGL 103 or 1133.0 
ENVS 1015.0CIVC 1011.0MATH 1073.0 
MATH 1014.0ENGL 102 or 1123.0SOC 101 or ANTH 1013.0 
UNIV S1011.0PSY 1013.0Foreign Language4.0 
 Foreign Language4.0Free elective3.0 
 16 15 17 0
Second Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ENSS 2833.0ENSS 2444.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
ENVS 2603.0ENSS 275 or ENVS 2893.0  
PBHL 1013.0ENVS 2303.0  
PSCI 1104.0ENVS 3083.0  
 Free Elective3.0  
 13 16 0 0
Third Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
COM 3173.0ECON 2024.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
ECON 2014.0GEO 2013.0  
ENSS 2853.0PSCI 2844.0  
UNIV H2011.0Major Elective3.0  
Free Elective3.0Humanities/Fine Arts Elective3.0  
 14 17 0 0
Fourth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
PHIL 340 or 3413.0ENSS 3263.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
SOC 2414.0SOC 2424.0  
Major Elective3.0Major Electives6.0  
Humanities/Fine Arts Elective3.0Diversity Elective3.0  
Free Elective3.0   
 16 16 0 0
Fifth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCredits 
ENSS 3464.0ENVS 4422.0ENVS 4432.0 
ENVS 4412.0Major Elective3.0Major Elective3.0 
Major Elective3.0Diversity Elective3.0International Elective3.0 
SOC/Behavior Elective3.0International Elective3.0Free Electives6.0 
Free Elective3.0Free Elective3.0  
 15 14 14 
Total Credits 183

Career Opportunities

The largest job opportunities exist in the areas of environmental communication, sustainability, environmental policy, community action, water quality, parks and outdoor recreation, ecotourism, natural resources and conservation, international environmental policy, renewable energy, and climate change.

This major will educate individuals who seek careers and/or additional academic training in the following fields:

  • Sustainability planning and implementation
  • Urban, regional, and community planning
  • Geographic information systems
  • Environmental communications
  • Environmental journalism
  • Environmental law
  • Park management and outdoor recreation
  • Environmental consulting
  • Environmental policy analysis
  • Natural resource management

Environmental Studies and Sustainability Faculty

Mariangeles Arce H., PhD (Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul) Collections Manager at the Academy of Natural Sciences. Adjunct Professor. Biodiversity and evolution. Phylogenetics, taxonomy, molecular and morphological studies of Neotropical freshwater fishes. Global warming and conservation efforts.
Richardson Dilworth, PhD (Johns Hopkins University) Director, Center for Public Policy. Professor. American political development, urban politics, public policy.
Erin R. Graham, PhD (Ohio State University). Associate Professor. International institutions, international relations theory, global environmental politics.
Amanda McMillan Lequieu, PhD (University of Wisconsin-Madison). Assistant Professor. Environmental sociology, political economy, place and space, rural-urban interface, qualitative and historical methodologies.
Gwen Ottinger, PhD (University of California, Berkeley). Associate Professor. Social studies of science and technology, environmental justice, environmental political theory, citizen science, science and engineering ethics.
Jaclyn Rhoads, PhD (Drexel University) Assistant Executive Director at Pinelands Preservation Alliance. Lead on environmental policy and lobbying, sustainability planning and development, and watershed restoration and climate resilience.
Alexis Schulman, PhD (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Director of the Environmental Studies and Sustainability Program. Assistant Research Professor. Environmental policy and politics; urban planning; sustainability and resilience transitions; local knowledge and community science
Diane Sicotte, PhD (Arizona State University). Associate Professor. Sociology of environmental justice; inequalities in the citing of environmental hazards; community-based research in neighborhoods dealing with industrial hazards; sociology of the environment; urban sociology; social inequalities.
Andrew Smith, PhD (SUNY, Stony Brook). Associate Professor. Philosophy, social and political philosophy, American philosophy.
Dane Ward, PhD (Drexel University). Assistant Teaching Professor. Urban agriculture and sustainability both in Philadelphia and Cienfuegos, Cuba, as well as insect community structure and population ecology of reptiles and amphibians in the New Jersey Pine Barrens.
Elizabeth B. Watson, PhD (University of California, Berkeley). Associate Professor. The implications of global and regional environmental change and unraveling the interacting effects of multiple anthropogenic stressors on coastal ecosystems to promote more informed management, conservation, and restoration.
Jason Weckstein, PhD (Louisiana State University) Associate Curator of Ornithology. Associate Professor. Avian phylogenetics, comparative biology and evolutionary history; biodiversity surveys of birds and their parasites and pathogens; coevolutionary history of birds and their parasites.
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