Oct 16, 2021  
Catalog 2021-2022 
Catalog 2021-2022

Environmental Studies and Sciences

Director of the Environmental Studies and Sciences Program: Nurcan Atalan-Helicke

Associate Director of the Environmental Studies and Sciences Program: Kurt Smemo

Coordinator, Environmental Studies and Sciences Program: Anne Gallagher Ernst

Associate Professor: Nurcan Atalan-Helicke, Karen Kellogg, Kurt Smemo

Assistant Professor: Andrew Schneller, Kris Covey

Visiting Assistant Professor: Lowery Parker

Senior Lecturer: Anne Gallagher Ernst

Affiliated Faculty:

American Studies: Emma Newcombe, Gregory Pfitzer

Anthropology: Kathryn Baustian, Ryan Clasby, Michael Ennis-McMillan, Heather Hurst

Art History: Saleema Waraich

Asian Studies: Ben Bogin

Biology: David Domozych, Corey Freeman-Gallant, Elaine Larsen, Sylvia McDevitt, Joshua Ness, Bernie Possidente, Monica Raveret Richter, Erika Schielke, Patti Steinberger

Chemistry: Kara Cetto Bales, Kim Frederick, Steven Frey, Raymond Giguere, Judith Halstead, Beatrice Kendall, Juan Navea, Maryuri Roca, Ruchira Silva

Economics: Severin Carlson, Monica Das, Sandra Goff, Rodrigo Schneider, Smriti Tiwari

English: Maude Emerson, Michael Marx

Geosciences: Jennifer Cholnoky, Amy Frappier, Kyle Nichols

GIS and Scribner Library: Charlie Bettigole, Jenna Pitera

Health & Human Physiological Sciences: Paul Arciero, Sue D’Isabel

History: Erica Bastress-Dukehart, Eric Morser, Tillman Nechtman

Management and Business: Jennifer Coulombe, Cathy Hill, James Kennelly

Philosophy: William Lewis, Peter Murray

Political Science: Katherine Graney, Feryaz Ocakli, Bob Turner

Religious Studies: Eliza Kent

Sociology: Amon Emeka, Rik Scarce

World Languages and Literatures: Aureli Matheron, Oscar Perez, Shirley Smith

Department Overview

Environmental challenges are among the most pressing issues facing citizens in the twenty-first century. Few local, national, or international conflicts lack an environmental dimension. Understanding these environmental problems requires an interdisciplinary approach that integrates the natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and the arts. We cannot adequately understand an issue like water pollution through a single disciplinary perspective; it involves anthropology, biology, business, chemistry, economics, geosciences, government, history, literature, and sociology. The mission of Environmental Studies and Sciences is to help students develop literacy at the intersection of these disciplines.

We emphasize the integration of problem-solving within an interdisciplinary framework. Our students design and carry out empirical research and develop and defend their conclusions through clear written and spoken presentations. Environmental Studies and Sciences students will graduate with rigorous and multifaceted problem-solving skills necessary to frame, describe, analyze, and offer realistic solutions to environmental challenges.

The Environmental Studies and Sciences program includes courses that are interdisciplinary and that address environmental issues from a disciplinary perspective, and offers both a major and a minor degree. We immerse our students in the complexities of environmental issues through both classroom and experiential learning, locally and abroad. Students enrich their academic learning with experiences outside the classroom to foster responsible citizenship and to help our students understand the challenges of creating environmentally sustainable communities.

Major Requirements



Minor Requirements




Course Listing

ES 302 - Environment and Development in the Middle East  


CLUSTER A: Culture, Society, and the Environment

Courses in Cluster A examine the social and cultural dimensions of environmental issues. Drawing upon disciplinary and interdisciplinary foundations in the social sciences, humanities, and arts, these courses provide the student with an understanding of how changes in the environment affect social organization and cultural development. Courses in this cluster also examine how society and culture affect the environment and influence human response to environmental issues. Cluster A courses emphasize social and cultural perspectives (i.e., social sciences, humanities, and arts), although concepts in the natural sciences may be introduced as background material. Cluster A courses apply to the Environmental Studies major, the Environmental Science major, and the ESS minor.

  (when topic is Mesoamerican Archeology II)
AS 221 - The Himalayas: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on the “Roof of the World”  
EN 224 - Literature and the Environment  
ES 305 - Environmental Education  
ES 306 - U.S. Public Lands and Oceans: Policy, Law, Management, and Current Events  
  (when topic is Urban Planning)
HP 361 - Topics in Exercise Science (when topic is Contemporary Issues in Public Health)
HI 264 - History of the American West  
HI 267 - American Indian History   
MB 351 - Special Topics in Management and Business  (when the topic is Business and the Natural Environment)
PL 338 - International Diplomatic Negotiations  
  (when the topic is Population Explosion in Sociological Perspective)
  (when topic is Green Italy: Gardens, Food, and Material Culture)


CLUSTER B1 AND B2: Exploring the Natural World

Courses in these clusters examine the physical and biological aspects of environmental issues and, to a significant extent, examine how these aspects influence and are influenced by people. These courses offer students a scientific foundation in environmental issues by drawing on disciplinary and interdisciplinary courses in biology, chemistry, geology, mathematics, physics, and/or other disciplines. Cluster B courses emphasize the natural sciences, although social and cultural dimensions may be introduced as background material.
Cluster B1 courses apply to the Environmental Studies major only, whereas Cluster B2 courses can be used for both the Environmental Studies major and the Environmental Science major.  Both B1 and B2 courses can count towards the ESS minor.

Cluster B1

HP 242 - Principles of Nutrition for Health and Performance  
GE 251 A-D - Special Topics in Geoscience  (when topic is Energy Resources)
  (when applicable)


Cluster B2

BI 239 - Parasitology, Epidemiology, and Public Health 
  (when topic is Ecology of North America)
CH 232 - Analytical Methods in Chemistry  
CH 351 - Special Topics In Chemistry  (when topic is Atmosphere Chemistry)
  (Spatial Analysis & Modeling)


BI 235 - Biostatistics  
EC 237 - Statistical Methods  
ID 210 - Introduction to GIS  
SO 226 - Statistics for the Social Sciences