University of Vermont


Field Naturalist or Ecological Planning?

The Field Naturalist and Ecological Planning programs illustrate a kind of academic convergent evolution: each began in different academic environments and over time evolved similarities and mutual goals.

The Field Naturalist Program, now in its 30th year and residing in the Plant Biology Department, offers a Master of Science in Plant Biology. The Ecological Planning Program, created in the late 1990's, brings additional students to the Field Naturalist course of study. Ecological Planners work in parallel with students from the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources (RSENR) and receive a Master of Science in Natural Resources.

During the first semester, most of us have a hard time recalling (or caring) who is an "FN" and who is an "EP." Each requires 30 credit hours of courses to include at least two in each of three core areas: (1) life science; (2) earth science; and (3) ecology, with additional course selection to be determined by the student's studies committee.

But as students progress, program identities begin to emerge. FNs and EPs have subtle differences in curricula, graduation requirements, and funding.


Last modified October 11 2014 05:29 PM