Environmental Studies Concentration
The concentration in environmental studies is based upon the recognition that environmental and resource problems are not just biological, geological, economic, or political. Therefore, the concentration is structured as an interdisciplinary study by selecting appropriate courses from the natural and social sciences, as well as the humanities, in order to pool knowledge from across traditional disciplinary lines. This information is essential for an interdisciplinary assessment, analysis and evaluation of environmental problems.
Drs. Binney Girdler and Ahmed Hussen head the concentration. Dr. Girdler, a biologist, teaches many classes that focus on sustainability, including the introductory course in Environmental Science (BIOL 115), Ecology & Conservation (BIOL 224), Plant Biology (BIOL 232), Population and Community Ecology (BIOL 312), and one of the Environmental Studies Senior Seminars (BIOL 490).
Dr. Hussen, a member of the Economics & Business Department, integrates principles of ecology into his economics courses. He teaches a popular course on Environmental and Natural Resource Economics (ECON 235) and authored a book on the topic: Principles in Environmental Economics. He also offers a Senior Seminar for environmental studies concentrators. This year, his class looked at corporate sustainability and the challenges, conceptualizations, and policies behind greening businesses.
New interdisciplinary senior seminars often focus on issues in sustainability. In the past physics professor Thomas Askew taught a course on "Energy Policy and Use Worldwide," which examined various countries' approach to energy policy