Environment & Sustainability

Courses

The following is a list of courses offered in this program at Western. The official University Catalog contains more detailed and specific information about degree requirements for this major.

 ENVS 100 - INTRO ENVRNMNT SUSTNBLTY GSS2 (3 credits)

An interdisciplinary, historical analysis of the development of environmental problems, movements, and philosophies. Students apply historical lessons to critically examine sustainable solutions locally and globally.

 ENVS 200 - WRITING THE ENVIRONMENT (3 credits)

Students develop communication skills through presentations and writing on a variety of environmental issues appropriate to a wide variety of audiences. Through environmental essays, writing for nonprofit websites, grant proposals, and other forms of environmental writing, students are introduced to a broad range of skills needed for effective communication. Focus throughout the course on the analysis of arguments and texts further develops students' analytical and communication skills. Prerequisite: ENVS 100; COM 202 is recommended.

 ENVS 301 - SCIENCE OF SUSTAIN RESILIENCE (3 credits)

A holistic inquiry into how humans might live the next chapter of our history, guided by the ecological principles of sustainability and resilience. Environmental problems and their possible solutions are analyzed critically and quantitatively; field experiences on campus and in the community involve students directly in the application of these principles. Themes include sustainable agriculture, green building, renewable energy, and conservation and restoration. Prerequisites: BIOL 130, BIOL 135, PHYS 125

 ENVS 301 - SCIENCE SUSTAIN RESILIENCE (3 credits)

A holistic inquiry into how humans might live the next chapter of our history, guided by the ecological principles of sustainability and resilience. Environmental problems and their possible solutions are analyzed critically and quantitatively; field experiences on campus and in the community involve students directly in the application of these principles. Themes include sustainable agriculture, green building, renewable energy, and conservation and restoration. Prerequisites: BIOL 130, BIOL 135, PHYS 125

 ENVS 350 - US WESTERN ENVIRONMENTAL POL (3 credits)

An historical and contemporary investigation of U.S. environmental policies with an applied focus on the impact of national policy on the ecosystems and cultures of the American West. Reciprocally, this course traces how pubic lands agencies, social movements, historical land uses, and diverse cultures in the West shape U.S. environmental policy. Students combine analysis and discussion of major U.S. policies, prominent theories and issues, and student-led environmental service projects to better understand environmental challenges. Prerequisites: ENVS 100; ENVS 200 or COTH 202;and ECON 370.

 ENVS 360 - GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY (3 credits)

A critical examination of key perspectives, economic and political processes, policy actors, and institutions involved in global environmental issues. Students analyze ecological, cultural, and social dimensions of international environmental concerns and governance as they have emerged in response to increased recognition of global environmental threats, globalization, and international contributions to understanding of these issues. The focus of the course encourages students to engage and evaluate texts within the broad policy discourse on globalization, justice, and the environment. Prerequisites: ENVS 100; ECON 201, ENVS 200 or SCI 202; junior standing or instructor approval.

 ENVS 373 - WATER PLANET (3 credits)

An advanced water science course specifically designed for students interested in water related environmental science and policy. Topics include the physical and chemical properties of natural fesh waters and the movement and reserviors of fresh water within the water cycle. The course includes several hands-on exercises and field experiences where students investigate and analyze natural waters in the Gunnison Basin. Prerequisites: GEOL 101; GEOL 105 and one of the following: CHEM 101 or CHEM 111

 ENVS 375 - SEMINAR IN WATER TOPICS (3 credits)

An occasional offering that may include water topics in politics and policy, ethics and philosophy, or science. Prerequisite: ENVS 200 and ENVS 301, or instructor permission.

 ENVS 376 - COLORADO WATER WORKSHOP (1 credits)

A three-day annual conference bringing students together with a variety of water users, managers, ranchers, environmentalists, regulators and others involved in water issues for presentations and discussion on matters ranging from specific municipal or water district projects to major basin-wide planning for the great rivers of the West to global issues of water use and protection. Topics vary from year to year. Prerequisite: ENVS 350 and ENVS 370, or instructor permission.

 ENVS 390 - ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING (4 credits)

A field-work based study of local (Gunnison Basin) environmental problems. Numerous monitoring techniques are implemented based on principles of biology, chemistry, and geology. The emphasis is on collaborative and integrative group projects dealing directly with real-world environmental problems. Prerequisites: ENVS 301 and one of the following: ECON 216, MATH 213 or SOC 211.

 ENVS 400 - APPLIED SUSTAINABILITY (3 credits)

A field-based, collaborative, problem-solving experience that addresses a current issue in environmental sustainability. Implementing frameworks such as resilient and systems thinking, students collect information, analyze results, write a report, publicly present their findings, and begin to implement solutions informed by their analysis. Students learn basic skills for transforming their ENVS education into compelling environmental professional career possibilities. Prerequisites: ENVS 350 and ENVS 390.

 ENVS 410 - ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS (3 credits)

A seminar on the complexities of environmental issues from a philosophical perspective. The course also offers a survey of the evolution of environmental moral philosophy as well as in-depth analysis of major thinkers in the field. Students confront ethical concerns from both historical and personal perspectives, with an emphasis on the ability to critically evaluate and apply these perspectives to their work in environmental fields. Prerequisite: ENVS 301 and 350; or PHIL 335.

Western's Environment & Sustainability program helps students understand and address environmental problems. Pairing small classes with the vast classroom of the southern Rockies, Environment & Sustainability combines interdisciplinary courses in the natural sciences, environmental politics, environmental writing, environmental sociology, environmental economics and environmental ethics.

Environment & Sustainability students learn to understand ecological systems, analyze the environmental and social impacts of societies, and experiment with sustainable solutions to those impacts.

What Will You Learn? What Skills Will You Acquire?

The Environment & Sustainability program fosters leadership in sustainability and effective environmental citizenship through a network of student-led projects. Central to the program is the development of interdisciplinary, critical thinking, communication and problem-solving skills by: 

  • Applying the knowledge and research methods of natural sciences to understand and analyze environmental problems and solutions. 
  • Implementing social-science findings and frameworks to address local, national and global environmental issues.  
  • Employing the insights of environmental history, literature and ethics to make better decisions concerning environmental impacts and resources.
  • Some students take an extra step toward real-world effectiveness with a coordinated double major in Business and Environment & Sustainability.

Beyond the Classroom

Our inspiring Rocky Mountain location provides one of the best learning laboratories in the world. The Environment & Sustainability program integrates three kinds of learning laboratories:

  • The diverse ecology and geology of the Rocky Mountains -
From deep canyons (including Black Canyon National Park) to alpine peaks, Western is surrounded by a world-class laboratory for field-based environmental study.
  • Public lands comprise some 85 percent of the area surrounding Western Colorado State University. The Bureau of Land Management, National Parks Service, National Forest Service, Colorado Division of Wildlife and several non-profit environmental groups maintain offices in Gunnison. Western students learn from and help manage projects with these organizations.

Next Steps

If you're interested in Western's Environment Sustainability Program, we invite you to take the next steps towards becoming a part of the Mountaineer family. 

Share your interest with friends and family: 
  1. Email this to your friends or family    Share on LinkedIn    Share on Google+    Twitter    Share this on Facebook

  2. Get more information about the program.
  3. Schedule a campus visit so you can meet professors, see the beautiful Gunnison Valley, and find out if Western is the perfect school for you.
  4. Start the online application process - apply online now.
  5. Find scholarships, grants, or financial aid that match your interests and situation.
Designation: 
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Program Intro: 
Four-Year Program

Scholarships

Scholarships associated with academic programs usually have a specific scholarship application form that can easily be obtained by contacting that academic program's office or visiting that academic program's web page. If you have any questions, please contact the Financial Aid office at 970.943.3085 or 800.876.5309. To find scholarships based on year of study (e.g. - Freshmen Scholarships), please see the navigation to the left.

 Mahaffey Environmental Studies Scholarship

Mahaffey Environmental Studies Scholarship is Available to:

Students who have demonstrated community involvement with environmental solutions, academic excellence and a dedication to mountain environments which could encompass recreational activity, personal connection, or service.

Environmental Studies Scholarship Provided by:

Jim and Dianne Mahaffey.

Amount: Award depends on funds available.

Scholarship Recipient Selected by:

Environment & Sustainability Council.

Application: Application and deadline information available on the ENVS web page. Or contact the Director of Environment & Sustainability Program (970) 943-3162 - Kelley Hall 240

Find out more about Western's Environmental Studies Program at www.western.edu/environmental-studies

 Martin, Mike Memorial Scholarship

Martin, Mike Memorial Scholarship is Available to:

Environment & Sustainability majors who have a GPA of 3.0 or above. Preference will be given to a resident of Crested Butte, Colorado. If no applicants meet this requirement, preference will be given to a resident of Gunnison, Colorado. If no applicants meet the criteria, applicants must be a resident of Colorado.

Environmental & Sustainability Scholarship Provided by:

The Michael Martin Community Fund.

Amount: Award depends on funds available.

Scholarship Recipient Selected by:

Environment & Sustainability Council.

Application: Application and deadline information available on the ENVS web page. Or contact the Director of Environment & Sustainability Program. (970) 943-3162 - Kelley Hall 108

Find out more about Western's Environmental Studies Program at www.western.edu/environmental-studies

 Nauman, James D. Environmental Stewardship Scholarship

Nauman, James D. Environmental Studies Scholarship is Available to:

Full-time students majoring in Environment & Sustainability with a minimum of 30 credits at Western. Must have made a significant contribution towards environmental stewardship while at Western. Students must demonstrate academic achievement and progress towards ENVS major.

Environmental Studies Scholarship Provided by:

Dr. James Nauman, who attended Western from 1945-49.

Amount: Award depends on funds available (Anticipated award $500).

Scholarship Recipient Selected by:

Environment & Sustainability Council.

Application: Application and deadline information available on the ENVS web page. Or contact the Director of Environment & Sustainability Program. (970) 943-3162 - Kelley Hall 108

Find out more about Western's Environmental Studies Program at www.western.edu/environmental-studies

 Nauman, James D. Environmental Studies Scholarship - Freshmen

Nauman, James D. Environmental Studies Scholarship (Freshmen) Available to:

Must have applied and been admitted to Western State Colorado University and have a demonstrated interest in pursuing a degree in Environment & Sustainability. Must be enrolled full-time. Preference given to students with financial need.

Freshmen Environmental Studies Scholarship Provided by:

Dr. James Nauman, who attended Western from 1945-49.

Amount: Award depends on funds available. (Anticipated award $500.00)

Scholarship Recipient Selected by:

Environment & Sustainability Council.

Application: Application and deadline information available on the ENVS web page. Or contact the Director of Environment & Sustainability Program. (970) 943-3162 - Kelley Hall 108

Find out more about Western's Environmental Studies Program at www.western.edu/environmental-studies

 Joseph A. Kastellic Scholarship

Joseph A. Kastellic Scholarship is Available to:

 Full-time students who are majoring in Environmental Studies, Environmental Biology or a related field. Must be junior level (60 credits) or above and have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA. Preference given to students with financial need who are residents of the Western Slope of Colorado and have expressed interest in a career in park operations/park management or a career in the earth sciences.

Environmental Studies Scholarship Provided by:

Barbara Kastellic and gifts from others to honor Joseph, who was the first Superintendent of the Black Canyon National Monument from 1975-1984.

Amount: Award depends on funds available.

Application: Complete and submit The Joseph A. Kastellic Scholarship application which is available in the Office of Financial Aid. A recommendation and a one page essay will be needed to complete the application.

Find out more about Western's Environmental Studies Program at www.western.edu/environmental-studies

 Western Presidential Scholars Award

The Western Presidential Scholars Award is a full tuition scholarship available to Valedictorians of Colorado high schools (residents only) aimed at increasing the number of high achieving students attending Western State Colorado University.  The scholarship is renewable for eight consecutive semesters (four years) and will cover full in-state tuition charges after the COF stipend is applied.  The Western Presidential Scholars Award would replace any other merit scholarship that may have already been awarded to the student.  The Western Presidential Scholars Award is a competitive scholarship (application is required) as there are a limited number of awards available each year.  Below are some details you should know:

Minimum Criteria

  •          3.80 cumulative High School GPA 
  •          25 ACT score/1200 SAT combined score
  •          Be ranked #1 on high school transcript or certified as ‘valedictorian’ by high school official

Application Process

To apply students must submit a letter of application, one letter of recommendation, and provide verification of Valedictorian status.  Completed applications must be received by April 1st of each year.

Renewal Criteria

  •          Must enroll in and successfully complete 12 credits each semester (24 credits each year)
  •          Must maintain a 3.0 GPA at Western 

Faculty & Staff

Faculty

Kevin Alexander
Professor of Biology; Chair, Department of Natural and Environmental Sciences
B.A., University of Texas at Austin, Ph.D., University of North Texas
Phone: (970) 943-3405
Office Location: Hurst Hall 143C
Lecturer, Department of Environment & Sustainability; Graduate Faculty, Masters in Environmental Management; Marketing Coordinator, School of Environment & Sustainability; Resilience Studies Consortium Coordinator for Western State Colorado University
B.A., Western State Colordao University , M.A., Prescott College, Ph.D., University of Exeter
Phone: (970) 943-2294
Office Location: Kelley Hall 207
Dr. Abel Chavez
Assistant Professor of Environment & Sustainability, and Sustainable & Resilient Communities MEM Coordinator
BS, University of Colorado Denver, MBA, University of Houston, PhD, University of Colorado Denver
Phone:
Office Location: Kelley Hall 104
Katherine A Clark
Lecturer in Environment & Sustainability
B.A., James Madison University, M.S. University of Colorado Boulder, Ph.D. Environmental Studies University of Colorado Boulder
Phone:
Office Location: Kelley Hall 226
Dr. Jonathan Coop
Assistant Professor
B.A., Biology, University of California–Santa Cruz, 1995, Ph.D., Botany, University of Wisconsin–Madison, 2005
Phone: (970) 943-2565
Office Location: Kelly Hall 105
Matthew Ebbott
Senior Lecturer in Recreation and Outdoor Education
B.A., John Carroll University; , M.S., Western Illinois University
Phone: (970) 943-2115
Office Location: Wright Gym 222
Coldharbour Chair in Environment & Sustainability, Executive Director, Coldharbour Institute
Seattle Law School, JD, Vermont Law School, MSL, Fort Lewis College, BS
Phone: 970.943.2023
Office Location: Kelley Hall 114A
Karen Hausdoerffer
Lecturer in Environment & Sustainability
B.A., Stanford University, MFA, University of Idaho
Phone:
Office Location: Kelley Hall 114B
Dr. John C. Hausdoerffer
Professor and Director of the Master of Environmental Management Program; Professor of Env Sustainability & Philosophy; Director, Headwaters Project
B.A., Western State Colorado University; , M.A., St. John's College; , Ph.D., Washington State University.
Phone: (970) 943-3450
Office Location: Kelley Hall 107
Dr. Corinne Knapp
Assistant Professor of Environment & Sustainability, and Integrative and Public Land Management MEM Coordinator
B.A., University of Colorado, M.S., Colorado State University, Ph.D., University of Alaska
Phone:
Office Location: Kelley Hall 106
Jack Lucido
Professor of Communication Arts
B.A., Humboldt State University; , M.F.A., University of North Carolina-Greensboro.
Phone: (970) 943-3052
Office Location: Taylor Hall 212E
MEM Graduate Faculty, Professor of Recreation and Outdoor Education
B.S., University of New Hampshire; , M.A., Harvard Graduate School of Education;, Ph.D., University of New Hampshire.
Phone: (970) 943-2118
Office Location: Wright Gym 223
Dr. Jeff Sellen
Director of Environment & Sustainability, Assistant professor of Environment & Sustainability, Director of the Colorado Water Workshop
B.A., Wartburg College; , M.A., University of Nebraska-Omaha;, Ph.D., Washington State University.
Phone: (970) 943-3162
Office Location: Kelley Hall 104
Lynn L. Sikkink
Professor of Anthropology
B.A., University of Colorado; , M.A., Ph.D., University of Minnesota.
Phone: (970) 943-2062
Office Location: Hurst Hall 31C
Sally Thode
Lecturer in Environment & Sustainability
B.S. Colorado State University, M.S. Colorado State University
Phone:
Office Location: Kelley Hall 114A
Dr. Jessica Young
Global Coordinator, Associate Professor of Environment and Sustainability
B.A., University of California San Diego, Ph.D. Purdue University
Phone: 970-943-2195
Office Location: Library 120