About Our School
Jon D. Erickson, Interim Dean
"There has never been a more important time to be a student of the environment. The shared learning community of the Rubenstein School is working together to find balance between humanity's wants and needs, to address the overlapping challenges of persistent poverty and natural resource depletion, and to build a restorative and sustainable relationship between our environment and society."
Vermont is a place where the roots of natural resource conservation and management can be found. The University of Vermont long ago recognized the importance of providing educational opportunities in this area. Efforts were initiated with forestry courses in 1888. From that beginning, natural resource curricula evolved until, in 1973, the School of Natural Resources (SNR) was established as one of nine degree-granting units within the University.
Over the years that followed, the School repeatedly demonstrated its ability to adapt to an exciting and evolving field of study. The core curriculum and degree programs have changed to accomodate the needs of students. Today, distinctions among disciplines are de-emphasized while elements of a strong professional education are retained, an approach that is not simply multidisciplinary but truly interdisciplinary in nature.
In 2003, the School became the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, the first named and endowed academic unit at the University, following a generous gift from the late Steve (UVM, 1961) and Beverly Rubenstein of New Vernon, New Jersey and their family. Steve was a charter member of the Rubenstein School Board of Advisors, and his wife, Beverly, is currently a member.
The School has been housed in the George D. Aiken Center since 1982. In addition to the Aiken Center, the Rubenstein School campus has expanded to include members of the Environmental Program, the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics, the Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory, and the USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station. We also maintain many other special partnerships. The School is home to about 600 undergraduate and 130 full and part-time Master’s students and Ph.D. students, 40 full-time faculty members, and 30 research and administrative staff. Our alumni now number over 3000.
The Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources cultivates an appreciation and enhanced understanding of ecological and social processes and values aimed at maintaining the integrity of natural systems and achieving a sustainable human community in harmony with the natural environment. Read the full mission statement.
Our Green Building: the Renovated Aiken Center
With reconstruction completed in January 2012, our green renovated George D. Aiken Center redefines the relationship between building, landscape, and people in a way that demonstrates a pathway to a more sustainable future. The renewed and expanded Aiken Center provides needed space but with a reduced ecological footprint; it represents a harbinger of a sustainable future, a "green beacon" to those on-campus and to those coming into the city of Burlington. More about Aiken >>
Last modified February 03 2014 11:30 AM