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New Environmental Science Program at Geneva College

Aug 02, 2011

For the past few years, my colleagues and I at Geneva College have been shaping curriculum for a new Environmental Science and Technology Program.  With the approval of an Environmental Science major by the board of trustees this past May, we look forward to beginning the fall semester with the new major as part of the curriculum.

The environmental science major is an interdisciplinary curriculum designed to equip our students with knowledge and skills needed to understand and address current environmental issues from a Christian perspective.  The curriculum consists of courses in biology, environmental science, environmental ethics, chemistry, statistics, public policy, and land resources (at Au Sable) and 3 additional Au Sable courses. Geneva’s partnership with Au Sable is a key strength of the new major, providing students with a selection of field-based courses that greatly enhance Geneva’s curriculum.  In addition to completing required coursework, students will be encouraged to participate in an internship or summer research experience.  It is our hope that some will take advantage of research and internship opportunities offered at Au Sable.

Students have the option of completing 16 credits of Au Sable courses in a single summer, applying some of their regular financial aid package to this summer semester, and graduating a semester early.  This option enables students to benefit from Au Sable’s program without the added expense that summer courses typically require.

Also new to the Geneva curriculum this fall is an environmental engineering concentration within the engineering major. These additions to the curriculum are just one piece of a broader vision for environmental stewardship at Geneva College.  In the future, we hope to develop a “green campus” on property near the college.  We envision this site as a living laboratory, a model for sustainability on campus, and a means of serving the community.  We hope to eventually build a LEED certified building that can serve as an environmental laboratory and retreat center.  At such a site, students could be involved in studying local ecosystems, designing solar and wind power systems and environmentally-friendly water and wastewater systems, and teaching others to value and care for creation.

We pray that God will provide us with guidance and resources as we strive to teach our students to faithfully serve God and his creation.