Environmental Studies

Environmental studies is a major at the interface of the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities which has been designed to address the societal causes and effects of, and policy solutions to, environmental problems such as climate change and prepare students for rewarding environmental careers in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors.

The major offers a rigorous academic degree in environmental studies with specialized Concentration Career Tracks, involving electives, professional internships, study abroad, thesis research, and our Alumni Career Advisory Board. Areas of study include:

  • Environmental Law
  • Conservation Biology
  • Environmental Economics and Sustainable Business
  • Environmental Politics and Government
  • Green Architecture and Urban Planning
  • Environmental Journalism
  • Environmental Education K-12
  • Public Health and the Environment
  • Organic Agriculture and Food Security
  • Parks and Recreation
  • Environmental Organizations
  • Environmental Philosophy, Religion and Ethics
  • Environmental History and American Studies
  • Environmental Art and Literature

Alumni have been accepted to prestigious graduate programs at Yale, Columbia, and London School of Economics, and environmental law programs at Pace, Fordham, and Vermont. They have successfully found employment in the government, private and nonprofit sectors. The program typically has 80-90 majors enrolled and graduates 20 students per year.

Located in York City—one of the most vibrant centers of environmental education and urban ecology in the world—our program allows students to gain professional internship experience and academic credits in environmental organizations such as Bronx River Alliance (New York City Dept. of Parks), Wildlife Conservation Society (Bronx Zoo), New York Botanical Garden, American Museum of Natural History, and Environmental Consortium of Hudson River Colleges and Universities, as well as in study abroad and summer programs, from the Caribbean to Africa.

Our program reflects Fordham University’s mission of “men and women for others” and “respect for the environment” in that students have the opportunity to serve the greater good in the areas of environmental literacy, stewardship, sustainable development, and environmental justice, effecting positive change as citizens in a world characterized by complex scientific, economic, political and ethical interactions, and processes.

We invite you to join our program and find your educational and career path.

Students should officially declare the major in the freshman year and contact the program director for advising about required freshman and sophomore courses. The major can also be declared in the sophomore or junior year.

Program Activities

The following curricular and extracurricular activities are enjoyed by students.

  • Lecture series
  • Alumni Career Advisory Board providing professional advice to current students
  • Undergraduate Research program
  • Sponsorship of the club Students for Environmental Justice and Awareness
  • Sponsorship of St. Rose’s Garden, an organic vegetable garden on the Rose Hill Campus
  • Membership in the Fordham University Sustainability Program
  • Membership in the Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges and Universities
  • Cooperative internship program with the Bronx River Alliance (New York City Department of Parks), NYC Botanical Garden, and Wildlife Conservation Society (Bronx Zoo)
  • Summer internship program in the United States and abroad
  • Study Abroad program in Central America, Africa, Australia, Europe, and Southeast Asia
  • Scholarship program

Note: This major changed its name from Environmental Policy to Environmental Studies in Fall 2013. 

For more information

Visit the Environmental Studies program web page.

Our Courses

ENST 1000. Introduction to Environmental Studies. (3 Credits)

This course is designed primarily to meet the requirements of environmental studies and environmental science majors. It provides an interdisciplinary overview of environmental problems from the perspective of their societal causes and effects, introducing students to environmental policy methods in the natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and applied arts and sciences. Requirements include a 40 page essay blog, three class presentations, and a hands-on learning practicum outside of class (minimum 1 hr per week). Fulfills Environmental Studies and Policy Major Requirments.

Attributes: ENMI, INST, ISIN, SOIN.

ENST 3000. Environmental Research Methods. (4 Credits)

Study of interdisciplinary and statistical research methods in environmental studies. Students complete a research project. Students have the option of coordinating their research project with an internship, GIS training, funding and publication submissions, and/or preparation for the senior research thesis course (ENST 4000) required for the environmental studies major. This course fulfills the environmental major requirement in Research and Statistical Methods and the environmental studies minor requirement in Electives. Four-credit courses that meet for 150 minutes per week require three additional hours of class preparation per week on the part of the student in lieu of an additional hour of formal instruction.

ENST 3070. Green Architecture. (4 Credits)

A studio course in sustainable design practices for public spaces, landscapes, furnishings, or buildings. A major design project is prefaced with environmental research, technical strategies and standards, and in-depth case studies. Portfolio layouts. Field trips, workshops, lab fee, and office hours visits are required. Four-credit courses that meet for 150 minutes per week require three additional hours of class preparation per week on the part of the student in lieu of an additional hour of formal instruction.

Attribute: URST.

ENST 4000. Senior Thesis. (4 Credits)

This capstone course is required for all environmental studies majors in their senior year, i.e., in one of the student’s last two semesters. Using methods in the natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and applied arts and sciences, students write an interdisciplinary research thesis on an environmental problem. An internship can be used as a case study in the thesis.

ENST 4999. Environmental Studies Tutorial. (1 to 4 Credits)

Individualized reading and research under the supervision of a consenting faculty member and with the director's permission.

Courses in Other Areas

The following courses offered in other departments have the ENST attribute and count toward the Environmental Studies major and minor:

Course Title Credits
AFAM 4147Food and Globalization4
ANTH 2700You Are What You Eat: The Anthropology of Food4
ANTH 3380Hazards, Disasters, and Human Experience4
ANTH 4373Environment and Human Survival4
ANTH 4722Primate Ecology and Conservation4
ARHI 4555Art and Ecology4
BISC 1000Life on the Planet Earth3
BISC 1002Ecology: A Human Approach3
BISC 1401Introduction to Biology I4
BISC 1402Introduction to Biology II4
BISC 1403Introductory Biology I3
BISC 1404Introductory Biology II3
BISC 2561Ecology3
CHEM 1109Chemistry of the Environment3
CHEM 1321General Chemistry I4
COMC 4115Communication and the Food System4
COMC 4222Media and the Environment4
ECON 1200Basic Microeconomics3
ECON 3430ST: Sustainable Business4
ECON 3840Environmental-Economic Policy4
ECON 3850Environmental Economics4
ENGL 3424Romantics and Their World4
ENGL 3633The Enlightened Earth: American Lit and Culture After 19454
ENGL 3916Animals in Literature4
ENGL 4107Seminar: Ecology on the Edge: Climate Change and Literature4
ENGL 4147Food and Globalization4
ENVS 3000Environmental Science3
HIST 3538The Good Earth?4
HIST 3564Environmental History of New York City: A Research Seminar4
HIST 3990North American Environmental History4
HIST 3991The American Indian4
HIST 3992Capitalism4
HIST 3993Environmental History: New York City4
HIST 3994Climate and Society4
HIST 3998People and Other Animals in History4
HIST 5563Readings in Environmental History4
HPLC 1603Honors: Natural Science I4
HPLC 1604Honors: Natural Science II4
HPRH 1101Interdisciplinary STEM I3
HPRH 1201Interdisciplinary STEM II3
HUST 2001Introduction to Global Health4
INST 3100The Global Environment4
LPBU 3430ST: Sustainable Business3
NSCI 1020Physical Science: Today's World3
NSCI 1040People and the Living Environment3
NSCI 1321General Chemistry Lecture I4
NSCI 1403General Biology Lecture I3
NSCI 1404General Biology Lecture II3
NSCI 1423Concepts in Biology Lecture I3
NSCI 1424Concepts in Biology Lecture II3
NSCI 1501General Physics Lecture I3
NSCI 2010Global Ecology Lecture3
NSCI 2060Environment: Science, Law, and Policy3
NSCI 2142Paleoecology Lecture3
PHIL 3109Environmental Ethics4
PHIL 3712Global Environment and Justice4
PHIL 3722Native American Philosophy4
PHIL 3990Environmental Worldviews and Ethics4
PHIL 4302Environmental Policy and Ethics4
PHIL 4409Environmental Ethics4
PHYS 1203Environmental Physics3
PHYS 1501General Physics I3
PHYS 1601Introduction to Physics I4
PHYS 1701Physics I3
PJST 3200Environmental Justice4
POSC 3131Politics, Urban Health, and Environment4
POSC 3307Environmental Politics4
PSYC 3340Urban Psychology4
SOCI 3142Environmental Sociology4
SOCI 3145Environment Technology Society4
THEO 4008Religion and Ecology4
THEO 4520Animals, Angels, and Aliens: Beyond the Human in Christian Thought3
URST 5066Urban Health and Environment3
URST 5070Environmental History of the American City3
VART 2050Designing the City4
VART 2055Environmental Design4
VART 2070Architectural Design I4
VART 3055Ecology for Designers4