About Environmental Studies

Welcome to the Environmental Studies Program at the University of Oregon. Building on our university’s long tradition of environmental research and activism, we train leaders in creative problem solving, critical thinking, and responsible citizenship.

Our program sets the standard in interdisciplinary dialogue and collaboration, with more than one hundred participating faculty from thirty campus programs and departments. Our degree programs are flexible and tailored to meet specific educational and career goals, providing students with the opportunities to work alongside world-class scholars and researchers, develop concrete skills and analytical abilities, and gain hands-on experience relevant to careers in government agencies, non-governmental organizations, private industry, and academic fields.

The Environmental Studies Program is supported by nationally and internationally known faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Architecture and Allied Arts, the Charles H. Lundquist School of Business, the School of Journalism and Communication, and the School of Law. The program cooperates with the renowned research centers and institutes based at the University of Oregon, including the Institute of Ecology and Evolution, the Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Living, the Ecological Design Center, the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program, the Institute for a Sustainable Environment, and the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology. The Environmental Studies Program also houses the newly-established Food Studies Program.

Many of our students participate in the Environmental Leadership Program, our pioneering venture in participatory service learning, which involves students in collaborative environmental research and service projects with government agencies, non-profit organizations, and local businesses.

Our undergraduate degree programs are among the most popular at the University of Oregon, with over 500 majors currently enrolled. We offer B.A. and B.S. degrees in Environmental Studies and Environmental Science, as well as an undergraduate minor in Environmental Studies. Environmental Humanities have always formed a central part of our undergraduate program as well. Our undergraduate alumni hold positions in such fields as environmental planning, environmental education, green investment planning, wildlife biology, and more.

Our nationally competitive graduate program offers students the unique opportunity to design an individual course of study and to work with faculty mentors from across the university. The program confers the M.A. and M.S. degrees in Environmental Studies, as well as a Ph.D. in Environmental Sciences, Studies, and Policy. We encourage innovative and interdisciplinary work culminating in first-rate scholarship and creative projects in subjects ranging from biology, geology, geography and psychology to environmental humanities and policy studies. Students may take courses and work with faculty at our partner institutions, Oregon State University and Portland State University. Many pursue concurrent degrees in law; planning, public policy, and management; landscape architecture, and other fields. Our graduates work in national, state, and local government as well as national and regional environmental organizations, and many have pursued careers in research and teaching at leading colleges and universities. See our alumni page to find out what some of our alumni are doing now.

Nestled in the “Emerald City,” our program benefits from the progressive atmosphere and environmental sensitivity of the Eugene community, the cultural heritage of the larger Pacific Northwest, and the natural beauty of the rocky coastline, old-growth forests, and Cascade peaks of western Oregon.