Environmental Studies and Sustainability

Environmental studies and sustainability is an interdisciplinary field that attempts to understand and address the diverse environmental changes in our world and work to create a positive change.

In the past 150 years, our society has developed new technologies leading to longer life spans, increased communication capacities, and increased yields in agriculture. Unfortunately, the effects of these advances continue to be countered by the depletion of natural resources and changes in nutrient cycling, biological diversity, atmospheric composition, and climate.

The goal of the environmental studies and sustainability curriculum is to prepare students for a career in a diverse spectrum of environmental employment positions ranging from research scientist to writer to educator to political lobbyist, while developing a conscientious concern for the world in which we live.

The major is strongly interdisciplinary, requiring a core of science courses but encouraging exploration of the arts, political science, economics, education, writing, and other fields.

Major: Environmental Studies and Sustainability
Minor: Environmental Science and Sustainability
Related Major and Minor: Biology
Academic Catalogue



Choose between 3 different degree programs: bachelor of arts, bachelor of fine arts, or bachelor of science in nursing.

Top 5 Majors
All Wesleyan Majors

* also a minor


  • Accounting 
  • Applied psychology
  • Art, studio 
  • Asian studies
  • Biology 
  • Business 
  • Chemistry
  • Communication
  • Digital marketing
  • English
  • Economics
  • Educational studies
  • English with a Literature Emphasis
  • English with a Writing Emphasis
  • Environmental science
  • Equine assisted therapy
  • Finance
  • Forensic science
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  • History
  • Human resources management
  • Mathematics
  • Music 
  • Neuroscience 
  • Organizational behavior
  • Philosophy
  • Political science
  • Pre-law
  • Reading
  • Psychology 
  • Reading
  • Religious studies
  • Spanish 
  • Strategic management
  • Theatre
  • Visual studies
  • Women, gender, and sexuality 


Pre-Professional Concentrations

Find out more about our Pre-Professional programs here.

  • Allied Health
  • Athletic Training
  • Dentistry
  • Law (stand alone concentration or accelerated JD dual degree with Mercer) 
  • Medicine
  • Pharmacy
  • Seminary
  • Veterinary

Enviromental Studies students collect data in the Arboretum.


Three chief factors make this major a standout: an award-winning arboretum, one-on-one research with faculty, and a course of study that breaks free of conventional departmental boundaries. Half of the campus footprint, the Wesleyan Arboretum is a living laboratory for outdoor education and ecological research, but it’s also a place for recreation, creative inspiration, and personal renewal. Student researchers work closely with the faculty on environmentally relevant projects. Recent projects investigated lead (Pb) concentrations in turtle bones, water samples from central Georgia, and the role of the arboretum in storing atmospheric carbon dioxide.

Frog on tree in the Arboretum.

Outside The Classroom

Learning is more than just a classroom phenomenon at Wesleyan. Students in the environmental studies major and environmental science minor gain research and environmental education experience through the college internship program, independent research conducted with faculty, or study abroad opportunities. The 104-acre Wesleyan College Arboretum offers numerous volunteer and research opportunities, especially in the areas of ecological restoration and outdoor education.

Jasmine Rajbhandary holds bird.
Jasmine Rajbhandary ’10
Environmental Science & Biology Major

Undergraduate research is the best way to get an early start on figuring out your interests, and there are many opportunities at Wesleyan. Taking classes is one thing but actually applying what you’ve learned on a practical platform gives you so much more insight on the subject matter, as well as how to do research. It also helps you figure out what you like and what you don’t like. And having that research experience on your resume is always a boost.


Len Foote Hike Inn in the north Georgia mountains; Bird Banding Lab at USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Maryland; Texas Commission on Environmental Quality


University of Maryland, University of Freiburg (Germany), and Northwestern University.

Why Wesleyan?

Why Wesleyan?

No one knows Wesleyan better than our alumnae who have experienced learning, living, and thriving at Wesleyan. Alumnae reflect on their experiences on campus and the impact on their lives through lifelong friendships to skills acquired on campus impacting their careers.

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Career Development

Career Development

A liberal arts education prepares you for your first job and your last. Wesleyan has a four-year plan to prepare students to make the connection between a liberal arts education and success in the workplace.

Career services


Wesleyan offers 23 majors and 30 minors, as well as eight pre-professional programs. Students also have the opportunity to self-design their own major, combining two or more interdisciplinary major programs.

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James B. Ferrari
Professor of Biology (478) 757-5227 Profile

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