Learn to connect people with the environment through positive advocacy, policy, education and entrepreneurial practices focused on durable landscapes, sustainable food systems and resilient communities.

In preparation for careers in this field, students will be provided with a program of study that integrates the natural, social, and management sciences. In addition, the program aims to help students develop tangible tools, including remote sensing and GIS, for assessing and managing sustainable enterprises, while providing an opportunity to develop creativity and curiosity through curriculum flexibility and open and restricted electives. The program is firmly rooted in the core principles of experiential learning promoted at Paul Smith’s College, ensuring that students will not only develop the theoretical underpinning necessary for a successful career in this field, but will also have hands-on experience of the realities of managing resources sustainably. Given that the field of sustainable resource use is rapidly developing, the program will also incorporate a constantly evolving curriculum to ensure that graduates receive relevant training and remain at the forefront of the industry.

At the end of the program students will be able to:

  • Critically interpret the influence of politics, social forces, economics, and geography in developing environmental perspectives, policies, and actions, highlighting the influence of social, cultural, and ecological diversity. 
  •   Facilitate opportunities for collaboration and public participation around natural resource and cultural sustainability and work to create and maintain effective collaborations under a range of social-economic conditions.
  •    Integrate critical thinking and research skills as a basis for informed action by using one or more applied tools for environmental study and management in independent and group research/action projects. 
  •  Develop, implement, and evaluate sustainable strategies and projects that incorporate environmental and social consciousness into economic practice.   
  •  Develop a basic knowledge of scientific principles and make connections to real-world examples that would be considered for Sustainability practitioners.   
Career Options
  • Sustainability Coordinator 
  • Community Planning 
  • Environmental Law 
  • Environmental Educator 
  • Energy Auditor  
  • Farm to School Coordinator  
  • Sustainable Agriculture  
  • Energy Project Manager 
Courses & Objectives

Sample courses:

  • Sustainable Food Systems
  • Conservation Design: Green Construction
  • Sustainable Agriculture
  • Community Disaster Resilience Planning
  • Resilient Communities
  • Global Water Studies
  • Sustainable Development
  • Community Organizing and Outreach
  • Alternative Energy and Energy Efficiency

More program information and a full course list can be found in the College Catalog. For program planning sheets, click here.








Key Facts

As a freshman you will take courses that will introduce you to our 10,000 acres of managed college forestlands, visit a variety natural resource management institutions such as the Adirondack Park Agency and Department of Environmental Conservation, and the Wild Center. You will also take courses that integrate political, social, economic, technological and ecological dimensions of conservation and resource sustainability aimed at appropriate decision making.

  • B.S. Degree
  • Total Credits Required for Graduation: 120
  • Upper Division Credits Required (300/400 level): 45
  • Liberal Arts Credits Required: 60