Students are able to investigate sustainability issues through environmentally-focused classes taught by faculty with strong environmental expertise in interdisciplinary programs such as Engineering Studies and Environmental Science and Studies.  Faculty are passionate about helping students examine and understand complex environmental issues affecting our campus, our community, and the world.

Other departments and programs that regularly incorporate topics pertaining to the environment and sustainability include Art, Anthropology & SociologyGeology, English, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering Studies, Film and Media Studies, Health and Life Sciences, Philosophy, History and Biology, among many others. A number of these courses are cross-listed between Environmental Studies and various home departments.  In keeping with the interdisciplinary approach needed to address challenges in sustainability, many courses are team-taught.

Course highlights:

EVST 380, Sustainability Internship, is hands on opportunity for students to work directly with the Office of Sustainability on projects to help improve Lafayette’s campus. Look for a project that interests you and reach out if you have any questions!

AMS/EVST 253, Cultures of Nature, is a team-taught interdisciplinary course offered bi-annually that examines America’s cultural relationship with nature.

CE 203Envisioning a Sustainable World, In this seminar-style course, students explore the concept of sustainability, the relationships between the natural and built environment, and the sustainable and/or unsustainable aspects of large-scale systems (energy, water, food, transportation, buildings, etc.) that support society. Students research aspects of sustainable systems and/or participate in applied projects in the campus and local community.

CE 352, Hydrology, Introduction to engineering hydrology, primarily dealing with surface waters. Topics include hydrologic cycle, frequency analysis, rainfall/runoff relationships, routing, and stormwater management and design. Design problems using current hydrological computer models are assigned.

ENG 351Environmental Writing, This course is designed to engage students in advanced writing about nature and the environment. A central focus of the course will be an examination of the language and rhetoric used to describe these crucial issues in various popular, government, and scholarly contexts.

ECON 340, Environmental and Resource Economics, is taught by the Economics Department.The course focuses on how the environment and the economy interact and how public policy can be used to shape this interaction.

EGRS 352, Energy, Technology, and the Modern World, explores energy conversion in the electric, transportation, food production, and buildings sectors. Students gain both technical understanding of energy technologies and appreciation of the complex consequences and global contexts surrounding energy production.

EGRS/EVST 373, Technology and Nature, explores the complicated interactions amongst and between technologies and nature. The course help students understand those interactions by addressing historical, ethical, artistic, and scientific distinctions between the natural and the human-built world.

EGRS 480, Sustainable Solutions, Sustainable solutions developed for a complex, real-world project by small groups of multidisciplinary students directed by a faculty advisor, or team of faculty advisors. All projects include significant technical and non technical challenges, and do not have a well-defined solution procedure.  The STARS report was produced by this course.

EVST 290, Climate Change: The Facts, the Issues, and the Long-term View, considers the scientific evidence that has climate experts worried about the future, as well as the significant and global nature of economic, societal, and political-issues that human induced climate change raises.

HIST 252, Transformations of the American Environment, focuses on the historically changing relationship between the environment (and environmental change) and American society.

WGS 204, Gender and Environmentalism, merges key insights of environmental studies/activism, which focus on relationships between living beings and their environment, and feminism, which focuses on systemic, hierarchical power structures organized by gender difference.

Student Reports