Bachelor of Science in Environment and Sustainability

The BS in Environment & Sustainability, jointly offered by the College of Arts & Sciences and the Earth Commons Institute, equips students for a lifetime of environmental changemaking through hands-on learning, interdisciplinary perspectives, immersive experiences, personal development, and a diverse and hopeful community invested in wider transformation.

With their first two years spent on the Hilltop and latter two at the Capitol Campus, students pursuing the BS in Environment & Sustainability (BS-ES) will have unparalleled access to the many layers of Washington, DC, where local and global environmental change is made.

Students who intend to enroll in this degree will be advised to complete their University and College Core requirements in their first two years. First year students should begin the foundational coursework in the Fall.

BS-ES Major Requirements

The BS-ES degree features a series of required first-year courses that introduce students to a range of contemporary environment and sustainability issues and the analytical frameworks and methodological tools used to design and evaluate strategies to tackle these challenges. BS-ES majors are required to complete 28 credits on the Hilltop campus in their first two years, including:

  • 8 credits in Environmental and Sustainability Science (with labs)
  • 3 credits in Environmental Ethics
  • 3 credits in Environmental Justice
  • 3 credits in Theories of Change
  • 3 credits in Experiential Rotations
  • 8 credits in Interruptions and Integrations (signature JESP program courses)

In the third year of the BS-ES degree, students will choose a custom pathway to organize their upper division coursework. Students will take a skills and/or methods course to provide them with exposure to different methodological approaches and work in the environment and sustainability fields. They will also take a course in professional development, which will include an internship (internal or external to Georgetown) and a corresponding seminar. In their third and fourth years, students will also participate in a peer leadership course. Students will then complete six credits of coursework toward a research capstone project or an equivalent impact project. The capstone work will be broken into two 3-credit courses taken over the fall and spring semesters of a student’s fourth year in the BS-ES, and will culminate in a symposium presentation at the end of senior year. These third- and fourth-year courses for BS-ES majors, totaling 39 credits taken on the Capitol Campus, include: 

  • 3 credits in Quantitative Reasoning
  • 3 credits in Environmental Skills/ Methods
  • 3 credits in Peer Leadership
  • 3 credits in Professional Development
  • 6 credits in Capstone courses
  • 21 credits toward a Custom Pathway and/or elective courses
  • Optional (but strongly recommended) Environmental Immersion experience

Writing in the Program

Students in this degree program will engage with a wide range of writing opportunities throughout the curriculum, from reflections and reports to advocacy and analysis artifacts. The foundational courses in science, ethics/justice, and the humanities all have significant writing components, and many of the elective courses are likewise centered on writing in a variety of formats particular to their foci and methodologies. Further, students seeking the BS-ES degree will complete a substantial capstone project in the senior year that encapsulates their learning with a premium on writing skills.

Minor in Environment & Sustainability

In addition to the BS degree, we also offer a minor that is available to students across the University. The minor in Environment & Sustainability (ENSU) is an 18-credit suite of courses, with 13 credits comprising the core and the balance as electives, with a range of options for fulfillment:

  • 8 credits in Environmental and Sustainability Science (with labs)
  • 3 credits in Environmental Justice
  • 2 credits in Interruptions and Integrations (one semester sequence)
  • 5 credits in approved Elective courses

More Information

For more information about the undergraduate degree, please visit the BS in Environment & Sustainability (BS-ES) website.