The Saint Michael's College Board of Trustees voted unanimous
approval at their spring 2010 meeting for a new Environmental
Studies program to begin this fall.
The program focuses on the environment from the perspective of the
natural sciences, social sciences and the humanities. Students will
select one of those areas and develop a major, fulfilling specific
requirements, including a self-designed concentration carried out
through a research project.
Students may also minor in Environmental Studies.
Michael's students on the Tropical Ecology Study Tour in
"The program encourages students to build on the holistic framework
to shape their own investigations into pressing domestic and global
environmental problems, to appreciate the natural world, and to gain
insights into the creation of a more sustainable world," said Dr.
Valerie Banschbach, program coordinator and Professor of Biology.
Professors in the environmental studies working group are:
Dr. Valerie S. Banschbach, professor and chair of Biology
Dr. Nathaniel Lewis, professor of English
Greg Delanty, poet-in-residence and associate professor of English
Dr. Jeffrey Ayres, professor and chair of Political science
Dr. Richard Kujawa, professor of geography
Dr. Bret Findley, associate professor of chemistry
All students in the program will take introduction to environmental
studies, environmental problems and the senior seminar; each student
will also select breadth courses in natural sciences, humanities and
social sciences, such courses as general biology, ecology and
evolution; general chemistry; meteorology; human geography;
foundations of global studies; feature writing on nature outdoors;
population analysis; politics of food; environmental ethics;
philosophy of science, technology and environment; introduction to
For the major, students will work with faculty advisors to develop a
concentration on a topic related to environment that is of interest
to the student. Some examples include water; American environmental
attitudes; describing nature; human population and environment; food
and its impacts on the environment.
Additional Opportunities in Environmental Studies
The program is designed to engage students in environmental issues
through a variety opportunities in and outside the classroom,
through service learning projects, field and lab research, and
internships. Additionally, students may engage in study abroad
ecology courses, internships at such places as Shelburne
Farms, the Intervale, the Echo Center, Vermont Fish and Wildlife
Department, and elsewhere. Environmental Studies students will also
be able to work on campus in such sustainability projects as
the Saint Michael's organic community garden; GreenUp student
environmental club; the faculty, staff and student activist
Environmental Council, and through leadership projects of the
renowned Saint Michael's Wilderness Program.