The need for individuals with literacy and skills relevant to environmental issues has never been greater. With a global population in excess of 7 billion and the influences of human activities on our environment increasingly evident at local, regional and global scales, issues of environmental health, justice, sustainability, and stewardship have become more pervasive and more pressing. Findings put forth in recent reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) have galvanized all but a few to accept that an environmental crisis exists, and significant societal/political action is required to abate the problems we can influence and adapt to changes ahead. This need spans a broad spectrum of careers, including Environmental Management, Conservation, Ecology, Law, Urban Planning, Politics, Public Health, Business, Economics, Marketing, Risk Assessment, Architecture, Restoration, Education, and Public Administration, with employment opportunities in all sectors of society.
Our degree programs prepare graduates to effectively meet these challenges. Through a broad, interdisciplinary curriculum, drawing on courses in the natural sciences, social sciences, humanities and business, students who earn degrees in environmental studies/science gain valuable knowledge, professional competency, structured ethical reflection, preparation for service in the interest of social justice, and the dedication and skills to solve environmental problems both regionally and globally.
The Institute of Environmental Sustainability brings together a diverse faculty with an array of academic expertise to help students explore the relationship of human beings to the natural environment, and to develop the mental acuity and technical skills needed to formulate solutions to complex environmental problems. Ample opportunities for ‘hands-on’ learning experiences are available in the curriculum through courses at the Loyola University Retreat & Ecology Campus (LUREC), at which students engage in wetland and oak/hickory woodland restoration as well as biodiversity inventories. Students gain practical experience through internships at external agencies/organizations or on-campus in our greenhouse, biodiesel lab, aquaponics facility, farmer’s market, composting program or Campus Sustainability.
IES students have the opportunity to participate in a number of environmentally oriented Student Organizations including the Student Environmental Alliance, Biodiesel Club, Grower’s Guild and ChainLinks.
IES offers five undergraduate degree programs, all of which share a common core of courses in Environmental Science and Ecology with associated Labs, Environmental Ethics, Statistics and Data Analysis, Environmental Economics and Politics, and Engaged Learning.
Students may choose from five majors to meet their academic or professional interests:
B.A. in Environmental Studies, B.S. in Environmental Science (both with an option to complete a dual-degree MBA in 5 years), B.S. in Environmental Science w/concentration in Conservation & Restoration, B.S. in Environmental Science w/concentration in Food Systems & Sustainable Agriculture, and B.A. in Environmental Policy.