Students using spotting scopes

Our History

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 accommodate 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, and son, Andy, are currently members.

Our Community

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 Rubenstein Ecosystem Science Laboratory, and the USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station. We also maintain many other special partnerships. Our School is home to about 600 undergraduate and about 100 full and part-time Master’s students and Ph.D. students, 45 full-time faculty members, and 35 research and administrative staff. Our alumni now number over 4000.

Our Mission

The Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources (RSENR) is a learning community with the mission to understand, nurture, and enrich the interdependence of people with healthy ecological systems.

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Dean Nancy Mathews

Dean Nancy Mathews

"Welcome to the Rubenstein School. Our mission is to understand, nurture, and enrich the interdependence of people with healthy ecological systems. We embrace core values of innovation, critical thinking, integrative learning, community engagement, and cultural awareness in all that we do. Most importantly, we strive to provide academic excellence, while advancing discovery and learning in service to society, the nation, and the world."

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From the Dean's Office