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College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Information for Prospective Students
"NO PLACE I'D RATHER BE!" Our students wildly lip-dub Clean Bandit's viral hit while celebrating UVM College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and learning film production in a five-day winter session course.

Information for Prospective Students

collection of photos from the farm, classes and hands-on field workWelcome to the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences! Our goal is to help students identify an appropriate major and realize their educational aspirations. While the University of Vermont is a sometimes considered a large institution, CALS prides ourselves on the small college "feel" that we facilitate by making students our number one priority.

We believe that the process of education and advising begins in our communication with prospective students and their families. Below are links to sites that will inform you about College and University life, the process for becoming a UVM Student, how to visit campus and other related concerns.

Please be assured that the CALS Student Services Office is here to help you with your college education at UVM. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.


CALS is one of seven academic units offering undergraduate degrees at UVM. CALS programs emphasize the life sciences, agriculture and food systems, environmental stewardship and the preservation of healthy, rural communities. Students in the CALS learn how to make a difference in our changing world. Rigorous course work, research in state-of-the-art labs, hands-on experiences, and relevant internships provide students with the knowledge, skills, and values needed to solve important societal problems and ensure a more sustainable planet. Award-winning faculty in the College promote high standards and encourage educational excellence that will serve students throughout their professional careers.

The College is recognized for its commitment to student advising and promotes significant student-faculty interaction. We believe that advising is important to a student's success, so each undergraduate gets individual attention from his or her advisor. Advisors provide a broad range of support, helping students develop high-quality academic programs as well as guidance in career choices later on. Each first-year student is also introduced to the campus and to college life through our acclaimed, two-semester course called Foundations.

Flexibility, Individuality

The College is divided into six departments, offering Bachelor of Science degrees in sixteen majors. We encourage students to tailor their academic programs to fit their individual interests, needs and goals. Students may choose to add a minor to their degree programs, but it is not required. Qualified students have the option of a self-designed major. Entering students unsure of which academic path to follow can apply as "Undecided" as they explore the college's many programs. Students generally have flexibility within their required curricula to explore electives across campus.

Your Course of Study

Students at UVM need 120 credits and a grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 or higher to graduate with a four year degree. In addition to meeting the requirements of a specific major, faculty have identified competencies that they feel are important to the success of all students in CALS.  These are called CALS Core Competencies. As part of all students’ 120 credit program of study, the University requires two 3 credit Diversity Courses.

Honors Program

The CALS Honors program is part of the combined University Honors College. Honors students are admitted into the joint program and do honors work with students from all departments on campus in their first two years. In their junior and senior years students will do honors work in CALS as part of the CALS Honors program.

Established in 2001, the Honors program brings together a small group of students from throughout CALS who seek additional academic challenges and opportunities to think critically across traditional academic boundaries. The centerpiece of the program is the senior honors thesis, a substantial, original, independent, scholarly work which is completed under the direction of an advisor within the student's major. For more information, please contact Douglas Johnson, Director at (802) 656-8203.

A World of Opportunities

CALS encourages students to pursue academic opportunities beyond the classroom. Programs are enhanced by on-campus facilities, modern laboratories, and undergraduate research for which the College is renowned. In addition, options abound for off-campus internships, independent study, and study abroad. Students ready for greater challenge may also pursue undergraduate research opportunities.

Prepare to Make a Difference

Graduates of CALS may continue with advanced study in human and animal medicine, education, industry and research, for example. They are also prepared to work in such fields as dietetics, horticulture, landscape design, biotechnology, international and rural development, ecological agriculture, equine management, organic farming, and environmental policy.

If you would like more specific information, contact the Dean’s office. If you would like to schedule a personal tour of the College and UVM campus, please contact the UVM Admissions office.

Academic Departments and Program Contacts

Animal & Veterinary Sciences
Dr. David H. Townson, Chair
Terrill Building
(802) 656-1192

Dr. Sylvie Doublie, Co-Director
Given E Building
(802) 656-9531

Biological Science
Dr. Donald Stratton or Laura Hill
Jeffords Hall
(802) 656-9371 or (802) 656-1134

Community Entrepreneurship,
Community and International Development,
& Public Communication

Dr. Jane Kolodinsky, Chair
Morrill Hall
(802) 656-2001

Environmental Sciences
Dr. Donald Ross, Co-Director
Jeffords Hall
(802) 656-0138

Environmental Studies
Elizabeth (Ibit) Wright, Student Services Coordinator
Bittersweet House
(802) 656-0176 or (802) 656-4055

Microbiology / Molecular Genetics
Dr. Douglas Johnson or Brenda Tessmann
Stafford Hall
(802) 656-8203 or (802) 656-8254

Nutrition & Food Sciences, &
Dietetics, Nutrition and Food Sciences
Dr. Jean Harvey, Chair
Carrigan Wing, Marsh Life Science Building
(802) 656-3374

Plant Biology
Dr. David Barrington, Chair
Jeffords Hall
(802) 656-2930

Plant and Soil Science
Ecological Agriculture
Dr. Josef Gorres or Dr. Yolanda Chen
Jeffords Hall
(802) 656-9793 or (802) 656-2627
Sustainable Landscape Horticulture
Dr. Mark Starrett and Dr. Stephanie Hurley
Jeffords Hall
(802) 656-0467 or (802) 656-9511

Self-Designed Major
Dr. Jonathan Leonard, Director
Morrill Hall
(802) 656-2979

Rose Laba, Enrollment Management Professional
CALS Dean's Office
Morrill Hall
(802) 656-0289

Last modified February 08 2016 04:39 PM

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