Many of Western’s schools and academic departments offer curriculum in sustainability and environmental issues. The links below link to these program offerings.
Clark Family School of Environment and Sustainability
The Clark Family School of Environment and Sustainability offers several majors, minors, master’s and accelerated degree programs.
- Environment and Sustainability, major and minor
- Environment and Sustainability, Water emphasis
- Environment and Sustainability, Individualized Contract
- Master of Science in Ecology
- Master of Science in Ecology – 3+2 Program
- Master in Environmental Management- Sustainable and Resilient Communities Track
- Master in Environmental Management: Integrative & Public Land Management Track
- Master in Environmental Management: Global Sustainability Track
- Master in Environmental Management 3+2 Program
Academics with purpose
The Clark Family School of Environment and Sustainability offers a plethora of programs that prepare students to take on roles doing meaningful work to protect the environment.
The Clark School of Environment and Sustainability hosts several centers, institutes and opportunities for students dedicated to place-based issues.
The Center for Mountain Transitions “partners with local, regional, national, and global communities to build resilience for mountain peoples and ecosystems and to transition to sustainable solutions in the face of climate change.”
The Coldharbour Institute “is a learning laboratory where we demonstrate regenerative living practices that bring health to our bodies, land and communities.”
The Center for Public Lands “at Western Colorado University is a community of thoughtful future leaders who have come together from diverse fields to share expertise and collaborate on thorny public lands and natural resource challenges.”
The Center for Cold-Climate Food Resilience focuses on research and infrastructure to support agriculture in cold-climate environments, such as that of the Gunnison Valley.
The Clark School also provides an office for the High Country News “an independent, reader-supported nonprofit 501(c)3 media organization that covers the important issues and stories that define the Western United States. Our mission is to inform and inspire people to act on behalf of the West’s diverse natural and human communities,” in Kelley Hall, where students can engage in their cutting edge journalism.
School of Business
The School of Business offers programs with a sustainability focus.
- Undergraduate Double Major Environment and Sustainability + Business Administration
- Energy Management
- Master of Business Administration in the Outdoor Industry
- Master of Business Administration in the Outdoor Industry 3+2 Program
- CU-Partnership Engineering + Master of Business Administration in the Outdoor Industry 4+1 Program
The School of Business hosts the RECREATE Institute, whose mission is to “leverage Western’s School of Business to provide thought leadership, research, education, and partnerships for the renewal of resilient, inclusive, and sustainable rural economies in the Intermountain West.
Western’s School of Business offer a specialized focus on environmental ethics in the business world, preparing students to be advocates for corporate sustainability after their time at Western.
Department of Natural and Environmental Sciences
The Department of Natural and Environmental Sciences offers several programs that are strongly field-based, experiential learning programs. Featured programs include:
A scientific approach
The sustainability-focused programs in the Department of Natural and Environmental Science help students view environmental sustainability through a lens of scientific inquiry.
Recreation, Exercise & Sport Science Department
The Recreation, Exercise & Sport Science Department offers degree programs with an outdoor and environmental education component. These programs focus on developing leaders with a strong land ethic who are equipped to support others in their environmental learning journey.
Western’s hands-on Recreation programs immerse students into the natural world and inspire them to pursue and promote sustainable recreation in Gunnison and beyond.
School of Graduate Studies
Created through a unique partnership between Western’s Clark Family School of Environment and Sustainability and the Graduate Program in Creative Writing, the interdisciplinary program in Nature Writing offers students the chance to combine writing with advocacy and environmentalism. To get a head start on their careers in this discipline, students can optionally attain both their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in just five years by pursuing the Nature Writing 3+2 accelerated degree program.
Writing for change
The Nature Writing emphasis in the Graduate Program in Creative Writing helps students advocate for environmental sustainability through the pieces they author.