Q: What is sustainability?

A: Sustainability involves balancing the needs of human societies with the health of the ecosystems that surround and support them. It also challenges us to behave ethically across generations: how can today’s societies meet their needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs?

Q: Why is sustainability a growing global concern?

A: By the middle of this century, we can expect the human population of our planet to have increased by 50 percent, to a total of about 9 billion people. Rapid population and economic growth is producing a number of related concerns: global warming, dwindling oil supplies, extreme weather events, shrinking water supplies, and the accelerating resource requirements of developing nations like India and China.  We need to develop ways for resources to meet the needs of this expanding population.

Q: How do you make societies sustainable?

A: Designing a sustainable operation, whether at the local, national or global level, requires a comprehensive approach that understands the political, cultural, scientific, economic, and technological context of the relationship between humans and their ecosystems. Sustainability professionals need to be able to think across these different areas and speak to a variety of experts and audiences in their own “languages.”

Q: How can a B.S. in Environmental Sustainability help me make a difference?

A: The Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sustainability equips you with the skills and vocabularies to bridge the multiple disciplines—architecture, design, business, engineering, and policymaking—necessary to produce environmentally sustainable operations for communities, businesses and organizations. This program will make you a creative problem solver with the interdisciplinary training necessary to build the sustainable societies of the future.

Q: How is a B.S. in Environmental Sustainability different from an environmental studies degree?

A: The environmental sustainability program was built from the ground up to focus on the latest thinking in sustainable practices. It is not a repurposed environmental studies or science program—it focuses on the human element in the human-environment relationship to prepare students for careers in the growing field of sustainability management.  We combined the necessary elements to create a complete sustainability education, and even have a study abroad program in Copenhagen – an excellent model for sustainable living.

Q: What careers can I pursue with an Environmental Sustainability degree?

A: Career options include strategic environmental consulting, energy services and auditing, sustainable design and innovation, conservation and natural resource management, nonprofit environmental advocacy, urban agriculture and sustainable food production, municipal sustainability management, and “green” contracting and construction. You will also be prepared for graduate study in environment-related fields such as environmental science, urban planning, public policy, business administration, and law.