Sustainability Minor

Sustainability is an interdisciplinary field that explores, from multiple perspectives, the interconnectedness of every system on the planet and how to maintain and improve earth’s resources for current and future generations.  Environmental science provides the basis for understanding Earth’s systems and how humans impact them.  Humanities values our physical and ethical connection to these systems.  Social sciences allows us to understand political, economic, and cultural sustainability, as well as formulate workable policies for a sustainable future. 

Sustainability integrates a broad range of topics, including:

  • green business practices
  • ecology
  • natural resources management
  • city planning (including land development, housing, transportation, and urban infrastructure)
  • international law, policy, and politics
  • ethics, values, and environmental justice
  • energy and international development
  • food security
  • human health and quality of life.

A minor in sustainability can be combined with any major in any college at UNO, offering students a flexible and interdisciplinary curriculum.  Students who complete this minor will be able to:

  • Understand sustainability, its various sub-disciplines, major themes, and analytical techniques as it relates to virtually any career field
  • Recognize the political, economic, and cultural forces acting upon the global ecosystem
  • Appreciate the significant value of the global ecosystem services provided by a healthy environment
  • Identify ways to advance equity, improve quality of life, and lower our personal and collective environmental footprint, on campus and in the community.

Other Information

All coursework taken for the sustainability minor must be completed with a grade of “C-“ or better.

Contact

Julie Pelton, Advisor
 

Requirements

Undergraduate students will be expected to complete at least 15 credit hours of Sustainability courses, including an introductory course in Sustainability, one course in environmental science, and advanced sustainability coursework. Nine credit hours must be upper division (3000 or higher) courses. No more than six credit hours will be accepted as transfer credit.

Required Courses
SUST 1000INTRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABILITY3
Select one of the following approved courses in environmental science:3-4
ENVIRONMENTAL BIOLOGY
ENVIRONMENTAL GEOLOGY
EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE
INTRODUCTION TO PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY
HUMAN-ENVIRONMENT GEOGRAPHY
Plus a minimum of 9 credit hours selected from the following, provided those courses are not in the major field of study. Courses can only be applied to one area.
Select one of the following in the economic and public policy aspects of sustainability:3
INTRODUCTION TO ENVIRONMENTAL AND NATURAL RESOURCE ECONOMICS
NATURAL RESOURCE ECONOMICS
URBAN SUSTAINABILITY
GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS
INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT & SUSTAINABILITY
Select one of the following in social and ethics dimensions of sustainability:3
ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS
ENVIRONMENTAL SOCIOLOGY
URBAN SUSTAINABILITY
INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT & SUSTAINABILITY
LANDSCAPE APPRECIATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
INTRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABLE LANDSCAPE DESIGN
Select one of the following in sustainability and natural resource management:3-4
CONSERVATION OF NATURAL RESOURCES
CONSERVATION BIOLOGY
SUSTAINABLE LANDSCAPE PLANTS
INTRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABLE LANDSCAPE DESIGN
OUR ENERGY FUTURE: SOCIETY, THE ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY
ECOLOGICAL SUSTAINABILITY AND HUMAN HEALTH
Students may also pursue the following options, as approved by the director of the minor:
SUST 4090SPECIAL TOPICS IN SUSTAINABILITY1-5
SUST 4800INTERNSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY1-6
SUST 4900INDEPENDENT STUDY1-3

Please be advised that students who elect to complete both the ENVN major and Sustainability minor may only count 1000-level classes for both the major and minor. For other majors, students may count one lower-level course and one upper-level course for both the major and minor.