Two students on boat holding water sample bags

If you love the outdoors, science, and creating solutions, a B.S. degree in Environmental Sciences may be for you. If you've considered an education where classroom encounters with world-renowned environmental scientists are heightened by field, research, internship, and service-learning opportunities, then this major may offer a perfect college experience.

What is Environmental Sciences?

Environmental sciences bring together the fields of ecology, biology, zoology, aquatic ecology, atmospheric science, soil science, geology, hydrology, chemistry, and more in an interdisciplinary study of how natural and human-made processes interact with one another and affect Earth's ecosystems.

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What will I learn?

The Environmental Sciences major prepares students to develop and apply science and technical knowledge to conserve and sustainably manage social-ecological systems. By combining a science-based core curriculum with hands-on experience, students are challenged to identify, analyze, and respond to complex environmental problems across local, regional, and global scales. Students dive into the science and issues related to global change, water quality, species and ecosystem conservation, ecological design, environmental and human health, and more.

Learning Outcomes

Environmental Sciences graduates are trained to:

  • Apply their scientific knowledge with a range of methodologies and disciplinary perspectives through scientific inquiry, modeling and real-world experience in addressing pressing environmental issues;
  • Employ a systems approach to analyze how human and ecological systems interact to influence processes in air, on land, and in water;
  • Assess and articulate the scientific evidence surrounding key environmental issues and critically evaluate ongoing efforts to mitigate environmental problems;
  • Design practical and effective solutions to real world problems in collaboration with community partners;
  • Deepen their understanding of the concepts, processes, problems, and solutions in a chosen concentration.

What will I do after I graduate?

The world's ever-increasing environmental challenges have created an urgency for solutions-oriented environmental scientists. Environmental Sciences graduates are environmentalists on many levels and are actively working in communities around the world. Graduates go onto graduate school or find employment in a wide variety of settings, including government agencies, non-profit organizations, and environmental consulting firms. 

Find more potential careers | Learn more about career development in the Rubenstein School

What Our Students Say

“As a native Vermonter, I have been lucky enough to grow up with Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains in my backyard. I feel a deep responsibility to protect Vermont’s beautiful landscape so that it can continue to be enjoyed by all. UVM’s Environmental Sciences program has given me the opportunity to learn about the 'why' behind environmental phenomena. I especially appreciated all the hands-on learning during labs. I know that my path as an environmentalist has only begun!" —Carly Alpert '21

"I became an ENSC major because I wanted to be able to apply complex analytical skills with my passion for the environment to attempt to solve the problems that humans have incurred upon our natural environment. The environment presents us with infinite problems of incredible complexity that I would like to dedicate my life to learning, understanding, and hopefully solving. That is why ENSC was so appealing to me because it offers interdisciplinary approaches, skills, and a never-ending supply of interesting topics within the never-ending environmental umbrella." —Bryan Stolzenburg '21