The Environmental Studies major at Wesleyan is highly interdisciplinary, reflecting the importance of the “triple bottom line” to sustainability efforts: people, profit, and planet. Our majors in Environmental Studies immerse themselves in courses in the sciences, arts and humanities, and the social sciences/professional studies; finally, their studies culminate in an integrative senior project in which they pull together their understanding of diverse disciplines. A minor in Environmental Science, with more of a scientific focus on environmental issues, is also offered at Wesleyan.
Environmental Studies students at Wesleyan are at the forefront of real-world sustainability issues on campus. For example, they help manage the college community garden, spearhead recycling and composting efforts, monitor carbon storage by the campus tree canopy, and participate in other sustainability efforts on campus. Students also play a vital role in maintaining the 104-acre Wesleyan College Arboretum, our own living laboratory for education, research, conservation, and recreation. They volunteer to remove invasive plant species, build benches and bridges, maintain trails, plant native shrubs and wildflowers, and help the college community celebrate the outdoors in our annual PioneerFest, held in the Arboretum each November.
For decades scholars and practitioners have been writing about and practicing what Richard Louv calls a nature-smart curriculum. But the publication in 2005 of Louv’s book, "Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder" set in motion a world-wide movement to reclaim the child’s place in nature as an inherent right. A nature-smart curriculum recognizes the irresistible connection that children feel for the green world, when given the opportunity to do so. Thousands of generations of human children learned survival and coping skills in this first “classroom” of our species. We are the inheritors of these children that applied those lessons well…and survived.
In the Wesleyan Education Department these nature-smart principles are an integral part of our preparation work for the Early Childhood Education major. Students begin this study in EDS 114 "Understanding Learning" where they are introduced to the evolutionary and experiential basis of nature - smart learning. This culminates in an all day field trip to the Wesleyan Arboretum where they have an encounter with Mother Nature herself. This course prepares them for the more in-depth EDS 313 "Children, Nature and Society" where through reading, writing, research and experience they probe the deeper causes of our alienation from the natural world and possible remedies, especially as they apply to schooling.
The Education Department is also working with Woodfield Academy, a nearby school for children with cognitive and developmental disorders, to develop a nature-smart curriculum. Woodfield teachers, administrators and board members have taken professional development coursework at Wesleyan and are prepared to rebrand their school as the first nature-smart school in Middle Georgia.
Wesleyan’s nature-smart educational outreach also has extended to other schools and groups in the form of extended field trips in the Arboretum, adult education classes in ornithology and nature study and field biology. Our 100 acre Arboretum is listed on the Morton Registry of Arboreta and is a biologically and topographically rich educational setting that is open to our college community and limited public use.
President Knox and nearly 700 college presidents across the United States are signatories to The American College & Universities Climate Commitment. This commitment pledges Wesleyan College to reduce our institutional greenhouse gas emissions towards climate neutrality and accelerate the research and educational efforts to equip society to re-stabilize the earth’s climate. Wesleyan College is committed to promotion of sustainability within our strategic plan.
The Georgia Campus Sustainability Network, promotes and supports statewide best-practices of campus sustainability efforts for all of Georgia’s colleges and universities.
The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education provides resources, professional development, and an extensive network of colleges, universities and other organizations to enable higher education institutions to advance sustainability throughout its institutional goals and actions. AASHE supports and empowers all higher education sustainability stakeholders to advance sustainability on their home campuses and beyond.
The College and University Recycling Coalition is a non-profit organization that facilitates the exchange of technical knowledge and best-practices on recycling and waste reduction programs among higher education institutions.
Wesleyan College is privileged to steward many arts and cultural events and share them with the community. Most are free and open to the public. Wesleyan art galleries are open M-F 1:30 – 5:00 PM and on Wesleyan Market Saturdays from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM.View More
Tour our beautiful 200-acre campus featuring Georgian architecture, lush green spaces, recreational facilities, residence halls, and worship center.Tour Now
Wesleyan College is home to five NCAA Division III sports: soccer, basketball, volleyball, tennis, and softball. In addition, we offer an award-winning Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) Equestrian program.Learn More