WPI’s strong curriculum is based on the core concept of project-based learning. For decades, WPI students have worked side-by-side with faculty researching solutions to real-world problems. As an environmental & sustainability studies major, you'll tackle local and global issues and projects that affect residents from Worcester to Morocco, including renewable energy and energy conservation to climate change mitigation.
The Environmental & Sustainability Studies program at WPI gives you the intensive technological and social training needed to prepare you to solve the complex environmental problems of our time — particularly the consequences of human-induced changes to the environment.
With hands-on project work and course work fully embedded in the science, technology, and innovation so prevalent in WPI’s culture, you’ll work with engineers, scientists, and social scientists to understand the impact and relevance of making changes in such an intricate system.
While working closely with faculty, peers, and community members, you’ll learn to communicate technical information fluently, and also have the know-how to implement scientifically accurate and culturally sensitive change.
Curriculum for Degree in Environmental Sustainability
The degree in environmental sustainability studies is interdisciplinary, with course work spanning biology, chemistry, environmental engineering, philosophy, history, and environmental law and policy. Our students are passionate about the global health of people and the environment, so they get involved in projects that have lasting, positive impact on local and international communities.
You’ll work closely with engaged faculty who encourage you to be out in the world. Topics are explored in transformative project-based work where you’ll learn how to identify and solve pressing problems like water sanitation, effective planning, and managing biodiversity in communities.
Whether it’s real-world work experience through a co-op or internship, earning a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in four or five years through the BS/MS program, or integrating your coursework with your extracurricular interests through Major and a Mission, there are many ways you can make the most out of your time at WPI.
Alumni Success Story
Kristophe Zephyrin '21
Even as a child, Zephyrin had grand ambitions to save the world and improve the human condition, starting with a dream of creating urban green spaces in his hometown of Houston, Texas.
Consider a Minor in Environmental Sustainability
Are you already pursuing another area of study but have an interest in environmental sustainability studies? Our minor in environmental sustainability provides a valuable understanding of perspectives in environmental challenges. Gain a broad understanding of several areas or focus on a specific subject as you take courses in environmental social science and humanities, ecology, and more. If you have an interest in social and societal challenges, our minor in science and engineering for development may be a good fit. This minor focuses on issues like inequality between rich and poor, climate change, resource scarcity, and more.
Earn a Degree in Environmental Engineering
If you have an interest in civil and chemical engineering, a degree in environmental engineering may be the program for you. This interdisciplinary degree blends courses from both disciplines to give you the power to create your own path in an in-demand field. Whether it be sustainable practices or keeping water supplies safe, you will gain knowledge in all areas that interest you.
Envision Your Future in the Environmental and Sustainability Fields
Whether you're interested in becoming an environmental engineer, sustainability director, or blazing your own trail working to improve sustainability around the world, WPI’s degree in environmental sustainability studies can help you get there. Check out the career outlook page to learn more about what you can expect from your future after graduation.
Explore Related Majors
A degree in environmental sustainability isn’t the only opportunity for you to follow your passions in addressing global issues through social sciences and technology. WPI’s degree in society, technology, and policy will put you on the cutting edge of global issues where society and technology merge, while the BS in international and global studies features a required study abroad experience as well as a distinct curriculum that combines the humanities, social sciences, business, science, and engineering.