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Environmental Studies

Program Director: Sarah Mittlefehldt, Ph.D.
Division of Environmental Studies & Management

Programs offered:
  • BA in Environmental Studies
  • Minor in Environmental Studies
  • Minor in Environmental Policy

Choose Your Own Adventure…
Environmental Studies majors at Green Mountain College can choose to concentrate in a number of different fields—policy, philosophy, science, education, communication, and many more—but they have one thing in common: they want to change the world. The environmental studies program provides students with the skills, knowledge, and experience that they will need to address complex environmental and social problems. By helping students become critical thinkers and engaged citizens, the environmental studies major empowers students with tools for effective political, economic, and social transformation.

Learning Outcomes for Environmental Studies Core Curriculum
The successful student will:
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to integrate science, economics and policy when solving social and environmental problems creatively in a professional setting.
  • Students will understand and be able to articulate different perspectives regarding the origins and solutions to social and environmental problems, and develop appropriate processes to resolve differences and bring about positive change.

Environmental Studies majors develop interdisciplinary breadth by taking a core set of courses in public policy, economics, and ecology; they gain disciplinary depth by selecting a suite of courses in a particular field. ES majors develop valuable professional experience through applied projects in their coursework and through a required internship after their junior year. By combining rigorous academic training that is tailored to students’ passions with applied professional experience, Environmental Studies students are prepared for a wide range of possible careers that make a difference.

Students who have majored in Environmental Studies have gone on to become community planners, environmental lawyers, and directors of non-profit organizations. Many now work for state and federal agencies or educational institutions. Here is what one alumna has to say about how her experience as an Environmental Studies student at GMC prepared her for her current position:

Mindy Blank, who works for the Sustainable Energy Policy and Technology Division of the International Energy Agency in Paris, France, writes:

“The ES program at GMC gave me an invaluable skill to assess whole systems of environmental sustainability. This is because of the well-rounded and wide-ranging coursework in the ES program . . . I was able to focus my degree on Sustainable Community Planning, which widened my picture of Environmental Studies in very pragmatic ways.”

“The most memorable thing about being an ES student at GMC was a feeling—‘this is MY degree, these are MY choices, this is MY path, and I can tailor it how I want to be able to do what is important to me.’ I really felt like I belonged and was incredibly empowered by the freedom I was given with my education.”

“Students participate in the creation of the infrastructure of the campus, from investment decisions, to energy usage, to food offered on campus…. There is community and civic engagement in the true sense of those words.”

View course requirements for a BA in Environmental Studies

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