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Department of Environmental Studies

flowers and the Bellarmine Arch

The Environmental Studies Department provides a transformative student experience in environmental problem-solving and capacity-building through intensive coursework involving field trips, technical skill development, and community engagement toward a fulfilling and meaningful career improving the human condition and the natural world.

Recent growth in green business ventures and environmentally sustainable practices suggest that future economic opportunities—for both individuals and cities—will be heavily influenced by environmental concerns. The department’s formation is the realization of Bellarmine’s commitment to educate students for the 21st century, as well as its mission to enhance the intellectual, social, and environmental quality of life in the region. 

Green Spirit Partner of the Passionist Earth & Spirit Center in 2020 and 2021; Tree Campus USA logos

We have been certified as a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Foundation since 2014, and we were recognized as a Green Spirit Partner of Kentucky Interfaith Power and Light in 2020 and 2021.

Our Degrees and Minor

We offer a B.S. degree in Environmental Science, a B.A. degree in Environmental Justice and Sustainability, and a minor in Environmental Studies.

The B.S. degree in Environmental Science prepares students for careers in environmental technology, environmental monitoring, conservation biology, and environmental science research through examination of ecological processes, the causes and consequences of human impacts on the natural world, and technologies needed to minimize or mitigate environmental problems.

B.A. degree in Environmental Justice and Sustainability prepares students for careers in environmental policy and sustainability, environmental planning, environmental communication, and environmental education through emphasis on the political, economic, and sociological aspects of environmental issues.

The minor in Environmental Studies pairs well with many majors, including but not limited to Anthropology, Business, Biology, Chemistry, Communication, Criminal Justice Studies, Economics, History, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology

Terra Learning Community

The Terra Learning Community (TLC) is a program for 15 first-year residents and commuters of any major that have a strong interest in the issues of sustainability. Students in the environmental majors are highly encouraged to apply. With a focus on the theme “Sustainability: From Words to Action,” students in the TLC support each other in the courses they take together, environmentally conscious living, civic engagement benefitting the greater community, and activities that align with the theme of TLC, such as a river clean-up, a visit to a farm-to-table restaurant, projects at the Bellarmine Farm, and outdoor activities.

Click to learn more about the Terra Learning Community.


Dr. Martha Carlson Mazur
Chair, Environmental Studies Department

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