Loyola University Chicago

School of Environmental Sustainability

About Us

The School of Environmental Sustainability strives to create solutions to the stress on our planet's natural resources, expanding knowledge in the service of humanity through teaching, conducting research, and sponsoring outreach activities on pressing environmental issues.

These issues include global climate change, the food production and distribution system, conserving and recovering biodiversity, restoring ecosystem function, identifying emerging environmental contaminants, and privatizing natural resources.

The School endeavors to develop a conservation ethic, increasing Loyola’s campus energy efficiency and transforming our consumption behaviors to conserve natural resources for the common good, for future generations, and for all forms of life on the planet.

Quick Facts about SES

Academic Programs

Bachelor degree programs

  • BA in Environmental Studies 
  • BA in Environmental Policy
  • BS in Environmental Science
  • BS in Conservation and Restoration Ecology
  • BS in Food Systems and Sustainable Agriculture

Five-year dual degrees 

  • Environmental Studies/MBA
  • Environmental Science/MBA
  • BS/MPH with the Institute of Public Health
  • BS/MPP with the Master of Urban Affairs and Public Policy Program

Two minor programs

  •   Environmental Action & Leadership
  •   Environmental Science 



Lake Shore Campus

  • 217,000 sq. ft. in the SES building, 6349 N. Kenmore Avenue.
  • Three “facilities” in one: BVM Hall, the Ecodome, the Atrium, and San Francisco Hall
  • Classrooms, labs, academic departments, student housing
  • 3,100 sq. ft. greenhouse for teaching, research, plant production
  • 2 student gardens
  • 2 aquaponics facilities and vertical farming
  • Engrained Café: seasonal, local, and organic 
  • Large scale biodiesel production facility
  • Largest geothermal facility in Chicago region

Retreat & Ecology Campus: LUREC (field research station)

  • 98 acres of wilderness – 20 acres of wetland, 25 acres of woodland
  • Hoop house, green house, aquaponics
  • Ecology and food systems research & teaching labs
  • Housing for 186 students for summer courses

Entrepreneurial Solutions-Based Learning

Our programs are uniquely designed to give students a rigorous science-based education enhanced with creative, practical experiences that prepare them for careers. Students study environmental problems and develop entrepreneurial solutions that are both fiscally and environmentally sustainable. For example, students are converting our dormitory cafeteria waste vegetable oil into biodiesel which they sell to our inter-campus shuttle bus company for a profit while reducing our carbon emissions. Students developed a farm, are growing organic food sustainably, and have developed a business plan with five revenue streams that the farm uses to fund its operational expenses. These student enterprises provide excellent practical experiences that translate directly to the workplace.

Programs Designed for Career Outcomes

Our academic programs align with federal and state agendas for addressing environmental security and sustainability. As such, they equip students with the education and experience needed to succeed in the workplace and advance a green economy. In addition, the structure of each of our programs has been informed by professionals in the business sector to increase our students' readiness for employment. Our 5-year dual-degree (bachelor's/master's) programs prepare students for careers in sustainable business, public health, and policy making.

Excellent Faculty Defining the Frontier

The faculty are teacher-scholars who incorporate their research into their teaching and engage students directly in their research projects. Our faculty care for their students. They work closely with and help students define their passions and career paths. Faculty research topics are critical to today's environmental concerns, and include the impacts of environmental toxins on aquatic life, impacts of invasive species on ecosystem structure and function, testing new sustainable agriculture techniques on crop production, conservation of biodiversity, restoration of wetland and wooded habitats, the effects of nitrogen pollution on microbial processing of nitrogen, and pollination research on crop production.