Bachelor of Science
Natural & Environmental Sciences
Wildlife & Conservation Biology students study the principles and develop the skills needed to manage and conserve wildlife and their habitats. Facing the effects of climate change, rapid human population growth and urban development, graduates of this degree are on the front lines of managing and preserving the natural environment for future generations. Situated in the Gunnison Basin—82 percent of which is public land—Western is an ideal place for students to immerse in an expansive learning laboratory.
The Wildlife & Conservation Biology emphasis is geared toward students interested in careers working in the field, whether that be for conservation agencies or game, wildlife and resource management. Students dive into hands-on coursework and labs their first year, and are in classes where they will be on a first-name basis with their professors. As students advance to upper-division courses, they develop experimental design and science communication skills. Students hone field techniques such as species identification, vegetation monitoring, stream assessment, radio telemetry, spatial analysis (GIS) and diverse approaches to measuring populations, communities and ecosystems.
Before Wildlife & Conservation students graduate, they will have numerous networking opportunities with natural resource agencies through internships, class work, field trips, temporary positions and volunteer opportunities. Due to our intimate educational experience, faculty are able to provide personal career advising with detailed references. Our graduates are often hired at local, state and national agencies, including:
- Bureau of Land Management
- Colorado Parks and Wildlife
- National Park Service
- Natural Resources Conservation Service
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
- U.S. Forest Service
Graduates also work with nongovernmental organizations, such as nonprofit environmental groups, Native American tribes, ecological consulting companies and for-profit consulting companies.