Mercyhurst University

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Sustainability Concentration

In consultation with an advisor, a program of study leading to a B.A. or B.S. in Biology with a concentration in Sustainability Studies will be created. Besides providing the same breadth and depth as the biology program, the Sustainability Studies concentration offers students interdisciplinary coursework providing tools to effectively contend with pressing global issues of resource depletion, environmental degradation, and environmental injustice. Students completing the requirements for this concentration will be knowledgeable of the concepts, values, and practices of sustainability and sustainable development.

The curriculum for the Sustainability Studies concentration include three “tiers” of courses:

Tier I

  • IDST 105 Introduction to Sustainability Studies
  • Sust 490 Senior Field Experince in Sustainabilities
  • Sust 490 will replace BIO 366/466 or BIO 474 for major requirements.

Tier II

Five courses offered by a variety of departments, some of which will also satisfy the core curriculum (including courses listed in the Sustainability Studies part of the catalogue). A list of approved Tier II courses will be maintained by the coordinators of the Sustainabililty Studies program (see Dr. Chris Magoc or Dr. Mike Campbell).

Tier III

Five courses from with the Zurn School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics that satisfy the Tier III Requirements, including upper-level biology courses. Having an environmental focus or other upper-level Science courses meeting students’ specific needs and career goals. Tier three courses may be selected from among the same courses that meet “thematic” requirements for the biology major, or independent study courses on subjects not specifcally listed in the catalog.

It is intended that Tier three courses and SUST 490 will provide students with opportunities to undertake practical research and service projects that address local, regional, and international issues in sustainable agriculture, environmental contaminant monitoring/abatement, ecosystem, community and population health assessment, and climate change issues.