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Environmental Policy and Planning

Interdisciplinary Major or Minor
(Bachelor of Science)

Professors – Scott Furlong, John R. Stoll (chair)
Associate Professors – Ekaterina Levintova, Laurel E. Phoenix, Lora Warner
Assistant Professors – David Helpap, Aaron Weinschenk, Elizabeth Wheat
Instructor – Karen Dalke

Environmental Policy and Planning is an environmental studies program based in the social sciences. It is designed to prepare students for a variety of challenging professions involving the planning, analysis, design, and administration of policies and programs dealing with the natural and human-made environment. Students who major in Environmental Policy and Planning consider environmental challenges through the lens of law, politics, and economics. The program provides students with a solid background in environmental policy, environmental law, environmental planning, and an introduction to sustainable development and community-based environmental protection. It also prepares students for graduate work in environmental studies, public policy, public administration, law, urban and regional planning, and related fields.

Environmental Policy and Planning majors engage in both theoretical and applied study in their courses, and have flexibility to choose from different courses. Students may serve as interns in planning agencies in local governments, work with environmental organizations, or develop programs for sustainable communities. The two program emphases from which majors can choose are public policy and planning. While students must select one emphasis for their Environmental Policy and Planning major, students are also encouraged to take courses in the other emphasis.

The major in Environmental Policy and Planning consists of three sets of requirements: required supporting and analytical tool courses, an upper-level core of courses, and completion of courses within an area of emphasis. Other courses are recommended for majors. Students should discuss these recommended courses with their program advisers when establishing an academic plan.

The public policy emphasis focuses on environmental policy development and implementation; methods of policy analysis; and political, administrative, legal, and economic issues in environmental policy. It provides students with a strong background in the public policy and administrative aspects of environmental studies. This emphasis prepares students for employment in the public, nonprofit, and private market sectors as environmental policy analysts, specialists in public information, environmental management, government relations, and related careers, as well as for graduate work in environmental studies, public policy, public affairs, administration, and law.

The planning emphasis focuses on sustainable planning theory and methods, techniques in geographic information systems, land and resources use, and economic issues in environmental policy and planning. Students interested in developing skills in the planning and development of land at the community and regional levels, and in the economic issues of environmental policy and planning, may want to select this emphasis. It helps prepare students for careers and graduate work in environmental planning, urban and regional planning, community-based environmental management, geography, and related fields.

A minor in Environmental Policy and Planning is similar to the major in developing knowledge and skills in planning, decision-making, public policy, environmental sciences, political and economic processes, as well as the analytic capacities to participate in decision-making. An interdisciplinary minor in Environmental Policy and Planning is a good choice for students who wish to major in Environmental Science, Public Administration, Political Science, Economics, Urban and Regional Studies, Democracy and Justice Studies, or a number of other programs.

Considering a Double Major or a Major and a Minor?

Some students may want to consider a double major, combining Environmental Policy and Planning with Public Administration. Other popular second majors include Political Science and Economics. A double major or a minor in one of these fields complements the Environmental Policy and Planning curriculum, and makes students stronger candidates when seeking careers or entry into graduate programs.  A certificate in Environmental Sustainability and Business is also available and fits well with a major or minor in Environmental Policy and Planning. Students should contact a faculty adviser early in their academic careers for advice on these options.

Students may study abroad or at other campuses in the United States through UW-Green Bay’s participation in international exchange programs and National Student Exchange. Travel courses are another option for obtaining academic credits and completing requirements. For more information, contact the Office of International Education at (920) 465-2190 or see .

Area of Emphasis

Students must complete requirements in one of the following areas of emphasis: