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30 Affordable On-campus Bachelor’s in Sustainability for 2020

A bachelor’s degree in Sustainability is an interdisciplinary field that blends social and physical sciences with ecological and business studies. Students learn about the various ways human and natural interactions impact the overall environment. They study the damages caused over the past centuries and explore the emerging technologies and methods that can mitigate that damage. The curriculum also teaches diverse skills to help future graduates promote their organization’s development in a way that respects the natural environment.

Sustainability studies have become popular as governments around the world enact regulations to try and combat global climate change. The need for trained and knowledgeable ecological experts is growing every day. Companies are looking for graduates who have completed sustainability, environmental science, or related degrees to join their workforce. These professionals are trained to create and execute sustainable business plans for ethical and environmentally conscious products and services.

A bachelor’s degree in sustainability combines theory and practice to provide the foundational knowledge students need for the field. Many students opt for entry-level positions in the burgeoning industry while others go on to pursue graduate studies. Getting a master’s degree in Sustainability is a good idea. The demand for experts in the field is steadily increasing. Before the domain becomes too crowded, it’s a smart idea to get a postgraduate qualification and stay ahead of the competition.

Some of the undergraduate degrees in Sustainability mentioned here are:

  • Environmental & Sustainability Studies (B.A.)
  • B.S. in Sustainability Studies
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability
  • B.A. in Environmental Studies and Sustainability
  • Bachelor’s in Environmental Sustainability
  • B.A., BS on Sustainability
  • B.A. in Sustainable Community Development
  • B.S. in Environmental Science
  • Bachelor’s in Sustainability and Environmental Stewardship
  • Bachelor of Science in Sustainable Built Environments

Typically, the Bachelor of Sustainability curriculum includes Introduction to Sustainability, Careers in Sustainability, History of the Built Environment, Environmental Ethics, Environmental Science and Sustainability, Economics in Society and Sustainability, Business Communications for Sustainable Management, Sustainable Agriculture and Food, Climate Change and Sustainability, Ecology for Sustainable Management, Renewable Energy for Sustainable Management, Natural Resource Management, Marketing for a Sustainable World, Economics of Environmental Sustainability, Management and Environmental Information Systems, Environmental and Sustainability Policy, Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability, The Built Environment and Sustainability International Development and Sustainability among others.

Methodology

TTo determine which college is a good fit, students need to look at:

  • the cost
  • quality of the program
  • return on investment accreditation

Our research is based on each school’s website and other reputable college ranking sites like U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, College Factual, and Niche.

In this ranking, we have gone through the schools that offer a bachelor’s degree in Sustainability and shortlisted 30 for the most affordable programs. Schools were then independently analyzed and awarded points based on the following factors:

Tuition (as reported by the NCES)

  • Net Price Below $10,000: 4 points
  • Net Price Below $15,000: 3 points
  • Net Price Below $20,000: 2 points
  • Net Price Below $25,000: 1 point

Student-to-Faculty Ratio

  • Less than 20:1: 1 point
  • Less than 15: 1: 2 points
  • Less than 10: 1: 3 points

Return on Investment (ROI) According to College Factual

  • Top 500: 1 point
  • Top 300: 2 points
  • Top 150: 3 points
School and Program Quality

Student Support Network: 1 point per item

Concentrations/Specializations: 1 point per item

Accreditation (School-Wide and Program-Specific): 1 point per item

Campus Diversity Support Network: 1 point per item

Wow Factor: 1 point awarded for each unique feature or program that “wowed” us

#30 Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Worcester, Massachusetts

Environmental & Sustainability Studies (B.A.)

Website
Points: 6

Worcester Polytechnic Institute offers a B.A. in Environmental & Sustainability Studies. It provides in-depth social and technological knowledge to help students manage various environmental problems that affect the world. The program explores how human actions impact the environment, along with their immediate and long term implications. The experiential nature of the program allows students to work closely with engineers and social scientists. Together they develop ideas on how to create better methods of environmental sustainability. Students need to complete a minimum of 10 and ⅔ units for graduation. Topics covered include:

  • Environmental Economics Environmental Policy and Law
  • International Environmental Policy
  • Philosophy and the Environment,
  • U.S. Environmental History
  • Development Economics and the Environment History of Ecology.


Average tuition per year: $53,410
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8.1%

#29 Hofstra University

Hempstead, New York

B.S. in Sustainability Studies

Website
Points: 7

Hofstra University offers a B.S. in Sustainability Studies. It’s a broad-based interdisciplinary course of study that includes required concentrations in:

  • the natural sciences
  • sustainability
  • mathematics.

The 60-credit program offers a selection of relevant electives to help students tailor their degrees to their career goals. Students develop core and advanced knowledge of sustainability issues that helps them understand how the environment is affected by various human and community actions. They learn to come up with creative solutions related to common and uncommon sustainability issues. Along with humanities and social sciences, the curriculum also covers:

  • geography
  • geology
  • public policy
  • technology.


Average tuition per year: $49,410
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.6%

#28 Jacksonville University

Jacksonville, Florida

Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability

Website
Points: 7

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida

Jacksonville University offers an undergraduate degree in sustainability with several concentration options like:

  • Science & Mathematics
  • Business & Economics
  • Social Sciences & Humanities

Students need to complete a minimum of 31 credits for degree completion as they cultivate the understanding and knowledge of the essential and advanced sustainability practices. Core courses include:

  • Sustainability
  • Geographic Information Systems
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Green Societies
  • Sustainability Capstone
  • Introduction to Biology & Introduction to Biology Lab, or Biological Diversity.

The program explores the complex challenges we face and the interdisciplinary thinking that will resolve them. The Sustainability major teaches critical thinking skills and values that prepare students for a wide range of environmental, energy, and policy-related jobs.
Average tuition per year: $39,900
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 11:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.5%

#27 Drew University

Madison, New Jersey

B.A. in Environmental Studies and Sustainability

Website
Points: 7

Drew University offers a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Sustainability. It explores the various forms of environmental sciences and the novel methods to improve environmental sustainability. The program is a blend of social sciences, the arts, and humanities. The program aims to help cultivate critical thinking. Students will gain the knowledge to leverage various techniques that can boost environmental protection and sustainability in today’s world. Students gain an understanding of environmental issues from a range of perspectives across disciplines. The 48-credit program includes topics like:

  • Great Challenges in Environmental Science
  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Environment
  • Society and Sustainability
  • Energy and Environment
  • Advanced Environmental Science
  • Environmental Writing and Eco-criticism
  • Environmental History
  • Topics in Economics and the Environment.


Average tuition per semester: $19,914
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 11:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.7%

#26 Eastern Mennonite University

Harrisonburg, Virginia

Bachelor’s in Environmental Sustainability

Website
Points: 7

Eastern Mennonite University offers an undergraduate program in Environmental Sustainability with an Environmental and Social Sustainability Concentration. It’s a 41 semester hour curriculum. It involves the study of natural sciences and Sustainability issues to help students understand their environment better. Students learn to deal with real-world challenges on sustainability issues with highly advanced sustainability and conservation practices. Coursework includes:

  • wilderness preservation
  • research facilities
  • the role of government agencies.

Also covered are topics like:

  • Environment and Society
  • Environmental Applications of GIS
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Concepts in Biology: Unity and Diversity of Life
  • Conservation Biology, Ecology: Adaptation & Environment
  • Environmental Risk and Policy

There is also an internship and capstone in Environmental Sustainability.
Average tuition per year: $38,850
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 9:1
ROI: NA

#25 Chatham University

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

B.A., BS on Sustainability

Website
Points: 7

Chatham University offers B.A. and B.S. degrees in sustainability via the Falk School of Sustainability & Environment. The four different tracks offered are:

  • Sustainable Energy & Urban Systems
  • Natural Resource Management
  • Sustainable Business
  • Food Systems.

Students develop skills in environmental and natural resource management. The 60-credit programs offer an in-depth look into:

  • sustainable energy
  • urban systems
  • food systems
  • sustainable business
  • working with different types of natural resources

A cutting edge curriculum and a highly qualified team of instructors help students expand their skills and understanding of the subject. Students can tailor their program by focusing on areas that they are interested in and customize their sustainability studies degree.
Average tuition per year: $38,482
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 10:1
ROI: NA

#24 Northland College

Ashland, Wisconsin

B.A. in Sustainable Community Development

Website
Points: 8

Northland College offers a B.A. in Sustainable Community Development that prepares students to improve the environment and bring about positive community change. The holistic and interdisciplinary curriculum covers essential aspects of:

  • environmental Sustainability
  • Social Sustainability
  • Economic Sustainability

Students learn all about:

  • urban planning
  • rural development
  • regional planning
  • ecological restoration
  • international and local economic development

The 56-credit program includes courses like:

  • Essentials of Economics
  • Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
  • Statistical Concepts and Analysis
  • Introduction to Sustainable Community Development
  • Globalization and the Environment
  • Sustainable Development Theory.


Average tuition per year: $37,078
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 10:1
ROI: NA

#23 University of Indianapolis

Indianapolis, Indiana

Bachelor of Arts or Science in Environmental Sustainability (SUST)

Website
Points: 8

Top 10 Online Colleges in Indiana: Indianapolis, Indiana

The University of Indianapolis offers a Bachelor of Arts or Science in Environmental Sustainability (SUST) through its Shaheen College of Arts & Sciences. The program is designed to help students cultivate the knowledge and understanding of the environment and sustainable methods that can work. Students learn how the environment can be adversely affected by human actions and develop innovative ways to meet sustainability challenges. The 36-credit program includes topics like:

  • Environmental Science
  • World Regional Geography
  • Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
  • Environmental Sociology
  • Ecology
  • Service Learning in Sustainability
  • Economic Geography and Globalization

There is also a capstone project and internship.
Average tuition per year: $30,888
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8.3%

#22 Southern New Hampshire University

Manchester, New Hampshire

B.S. in Environmental Science

Website
Points: 8

Southern New Hampshire University offers a B.S. program in Environmental Science with an Energy and Natural Resources Concentration. The 120-credit program explores the concepts of climate change and sustainability, as well as how it impacts society and the use of energy. The program combines theory and practice to help students develop a strong understanding of environmental science. Graduates of this program have a better knowledge of handling natural resources and the best ways in which they can be used for managing day-to-day energy requirements. Graduates go on to pursue careers in:

  • government agencies
  • nongovernmental organizations
  • businesses worldwide.


Average tuition per semester credit hour: $30,756
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13:1
ROI ( College Factual): 6.5%

#21 Washington University in St. Louis

St. Louis, Missouri

Bachelor of Science in Sustainability

Website
Points: 9

Washington University in St. Louis

Washington University’ Bachelor of Science program in sustainability helps students get acquainted with the diverse aspects of environmental sustainability. They receive in-depth knowledge and understanding to address critical environmental, social, and economic challenges. The 120-credit curriculum includes:

  • sustainability principles and strategies
  • environmental science
  • applications in practice
  • environmental law and policy
  • systems thinking
  • sustainability businesses
  • an independent capstone project.

Students can choose from three concentrations or select electives tailored to their interests. These include:

  • Sustainable Environment and Science
  • Sustainable Management and Organizations
  • Urban Sustainability.

Graduates go on to design and plan sustainability methods and strategies. These provide environmental services and sustainable outcomes for public, non-profit, and business institutions.
Average tuition per credit hour: $895
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 7:1
ROI ( College Factual): 6.9%

#20 Maryville University

St. Louis, Missouri

Bachelor’s in Sustainability and Environmental Stewardship

Website
Points: 9

Maryville University offers an undergraduate degree in Biology with a Concentration in Sustainability and Environmental Stewardship. The 128-credit program includes in-depth knowledge and understanding of the way living things interact with their physical environment. A cross-disciplinary and experiential approach helps students develop a better understanding of different kinds of sustainability principles.
Along with physics, biology, and chemistry, students will also learn about ethics and environmental law. The unique program allows students to work with a life coach to leverage their strengths and personalize their education. They are prepared to the lead in sustainability and environmental stewardship. They also receive grants for summer research programs and work with local institutions like:

  • Shaw Nature Reserve
  • Missouri Botanical Garden
  • Donald Danforth Plant Science Center.


Average tuition per year: $26,070
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 14:1
ROI: NA

#19 Loyola University Chicago

Chicago, Illinois

B.S. in Environmental Science

Website
Points: 9

Loyola University Chicago offers a B.S. degree in Environmental Science that encompasses a wide range of scientific studies and disciplines. The aim of the 71- credit program is to acquaint students with the various facets of environmental sustainability and the challenges associated with them. Along with the core curriculum, students also get to study social sciences and humanities. Students have the latitude to choose science electives that meet their particular needs/interests. They gain an in-depth understanding of the ways they can contribute to developing new practices in:

  • sustainable agriculture
  • conservation of natural resources
  • food systems.


Average tuition per year: $21,360
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 14:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.2%

#18 Appalachian State University

Boone, North Carolina

Sustainable Development(B.A.)-Environmental Studies

Website
Points: 10

Appalachian State University offers a Sustainable Development – Environmental Studies degree that involves extensive interdisciplinary study. It is one of the oldest sustainable development programs in the country and fosters leadership in sustainability. Students learn about environmental citizenship and correct sustainability practices. The 120-credit hour program covers all aspects of environmental learning. It also offers ways to customize the degree in a way that matches students’ career goals and academic interests. Courses include:

  • Principles of Sustainable Development
  • Science for Sustainability
  • Development Theory and Practice
  • Environmental Justice and Sustainability
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Classics in Sustainable Development

There is also a Senior Seminar.
Average tuition per credit hour: $530.50
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 16:1
ROI (EMSI): 15.9%

#17 Illinois State University

Normal, Illinois

BA/BS in Environmental Systems Science and Sustainability

Website
Points: 10

illinois-state-university

Illinois State University offers a BA/BS in Environmental Systems Science and Sustainability. The 120-credit program develops greater awareness of the environment and the various factors that influence it. Students study complex environmental challenges like:

  • pollution
  • climate change
  • harmful waste

Students learn to develop potential sustainable solutions to make a positive impact on the planet. The comprehensive curriculum covers all essential areas of sustainability study. Along with theory, students work with the latest technology and learn in a professional lab setting. This offers them real, hands-on experiences.
Average tuition per year: $15,128
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 18:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8.6%

#16 University of Arizona

Tucson, Arizona

Bachelor of Science in Sustainable Built Environments

Website
Points: 11

The University of Arizona offers a BS in Sustainable Built Environments through the College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture. The program is designed for students looking to create successful careers in a green economy. The interdisciplinary program offers a strong understanding of various sustainability practices thatcan help in building more sustainable structures and landscapes. The 121-credit program includes topics like:

  • net-zero energy design
  • passive solar design
  • energy conservation
  • natural ventilation
  • climate response

Graduates go on to work as:

  • designers in architecture firms
  • managers in non-profit organizations
  • environmental researchers
  • designers of renewable energy systems

Many continue their education in a graduate degree program. They become leaders in government agencies and corporations offering sustainability-focused products or services.
Average tuition per semester credit hour: $12,600
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 15:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.6%

#15 George Mason University

Fairfax, Virginia

Environmental and Sustainability Studies, B.A.

Website
Points: 11

George Mason University

George Mason University offers a B.A. in Environmental and Sustainability Studies. It’s a joint effort between the Department of Environmental Science and Policy and the School of Integrative Studies. In addition to their specialized concentration, students also participate in experiential learning through internships, field studies, service learning, or studying abroad. The 120-credit program includes courses like:

  • Environmental Policy and its interplay with Economics, Business and Sustainability
  • Climate Change, and the way it impacts society
  • Conservation and Sustainability
  • Sustainability in Food and Agriculture
  • Environmental Justice
  • Equity.


Average tuition per year: $12,564
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 17:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.4%

#14 Colorado State University

Fort Collins, Colorado

Bachelor of Science in Ecosystem Science and Sustainability

Website
Points: 11

Colorado State University offers a Bachelor’s of Science in Ecosystem Science and Sustainability through the Warner College of Natural Resources. Students develop the skills needed for the management of natural resources. They learn to make decisions associated with sustainability issues. They also learn to integrate the latest science into real-world decision making as they gain hands-on research experience while developing solutions to today’s most pressing challenges. The program explores:

  • the diverse ways in which organisms interact with their environments
  • the problems humans face in sustainably managing ecosystem services
  • the cutting-edge integrative solutions for sustainability.

Courses include:

  • Sustainability Science
  • Systems Theory for Sustainability
  • Information Management for Sustainability.


Average tuition per year: $12,432
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 16:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.4%

#13 University of Kentucky

Lexington, Kentucky

Bachelor’s in Environmental & Sustainability Studies (ENS)

Website
Points: 11

The University of Kentucky offers a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental & Sustainability Studies through the College of Arts and Sciences. The interdisciplinary program deals with:

  • social knowledge
  • comprehension
  • outcomes
  • causes
  • policy answers about the ecological issues occurring around the globe.

The curriculum blends natural sciences, social trends, and studies on humanities to resolve such issues. Courses include:

  • global climate change
  • loss of biodiversity
  • environmental pollution

Students are encouraged to develop critical thinking skills along with innovative solutions to environmental problems. Graduates go on to work in:

  • Environmental non-profit organizations
  • State, federal, and international research foundations
  • Sustainability consultancies
  • management firms.


Average tuition per year: $12,360
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 16:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.4%

#12 Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Blacksburg, Virginia

Bachelor’s in Sustainable Biomaterials

Website
Points: 12

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University offer a Major in Sustainable Biomaterials for students interested in creating a sustainable society and making the best use of all-natural resources. The 120-credit program is designed to help students develop skills to create a greener environment for future generations. Students go on to apply their knowledge and understanding to assist in the development of:

  • biofuel industries
  • forest product marketing
  • green construction
  • the creation of safer consumer products

The Department of Sustainable Biomaterials is focused on research and study that use products made from renewable natural materials through innovative processes.
Average tuition per year: $11,750
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 14:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8.3%

#11 University of Washington

Seattle, Washington

Bachelor’s in Environmental Studies

Website
Points: 12

university-of-washington

The University of Washington offers an undergraduate degree in Environmental Studies through the College of the Environment. A combination of social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities provides students with an in-depth understanding of the ways human actions impact their environment. Students develop critical thinking skills and learn to apply different kinds of sustainability frameworks to manage complex environmental issues. Students also conduct research and learn to communicate crucial environmental matters to relevant audiences in a seamless way. The 176-credit program includes electives in such areas as:

  • natural sciences
  • human and social dimensions
  • policy and decision making
  • international
  • bioregional
  • fieldwork.


Average tuition per semester credit hour: $11,465
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 19:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.7%

#10 Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio

Bachelor’s in Environment, Economy, Development, and Sustainability (EEDS)

Website
Points: 12

ohio-state-university

The Ohio State University offers an undergraduate degree in Environment, Economy, Development, and Sustainability (EEDS) through the School of Environment and Natural Resources. Students develop an understanding of environmental, social, and economic changes and how they impact communities and human lives. Students learn to deal with complex challenges, including:

  • massive ecological changes
  • rising social inequalities
  • scarcity of resources

The 121-credit curriculum includes courses like:

  • Intro to Environment
  • Economy, Development, and Sustainability
  • Communicating Environmental and Natural Resources Information
  • Food, Population, and the Environment
  • Regional Economics and Sustainable Growth
  • Environmental and Natural Resources Economics,
  • The Sustainable Economy: Concepts and Methods.


Average tuition per semester credit hour: $11,084
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 19:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.9%

#9 Arizona State University

Tempe, Arizona

B.A. Bachelor of Arts in Sustainability

Website
Points: 13

Arizona State University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Sustainability program for students looking to enhance their understanding of sustainability within the context of various real-world issues. The innovative curriculum focuses on the green environment and sustainability. This includes the various ways in which social and economic systems interact with the environment. The tracks offered with this 120-credit program include:

  • Society and Sustainability
  • Sustainable Urban Dynamics
  • Governance
  • Policy associated with Sustainable Systems
  • International Development and Sustainability.

Students graduate with knowledge in:

  • methods of environmental sociology
  • economic
  • anthropology
  • ethics
  • human geography
  • environmental politics relevant to the sustainability of ecological resources and social institutions.


Average tuition per year: $10,710
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 20:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8.0%

#8 Northern Arizona University

Flagstaff, Arizona

Bachelor of Arts in Environmental and Sustainability Studies

Website
Points: 13

Top 10 Colleges for an Online Degree in Phoenix, AZ

Northern Arizona University offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental and Sustainability Studies through the School of Earth and Sustainability. The 120-unit curriculum includes courses like:

  • sustainability
  • environmental justice
  • climate change adaptation
  • mitigation of issues relating to climate change, biodiversity and the enhanced demands on water, food, and energy resources.

Students learn how to improve human relationships with the natural world by studying ecosystems and the ways humans interact with them. Along with theoretical studies, students also carry out undergraduate research projects or internships. These give them practical knowledge of environmental sciences and sustainability. Graduates are prepared for careers in:

  • research
  • industry
  • education
  • government
  • public service.


Average tuition per year: $10,650
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 19:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8.6%

#7 Aquinas College

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Bachelor’s in Sustainable Business(BSSB)

Website
Points: 13

Aquinas College in Michigan offers a Sustainable Business Major that teaches students how sustainable business practices improve the health of our natural systems and bring long-term profitability. Interdisciplinary in nature, the curriculum integrates science, business, and environmental studies. Courses include:

  • Environmental Biology
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Advanced Environmental Studies
  • Industrial Ecology
  • Sustainable Business Management
  • Sustainable Business Innovations Lab
  • Cases in Sustainable Business

There is also an internship. Graduates are prepared to work in:

  • private industry
  • non-profit organizations
  • government organizations.

Graduates are also ready to pursue graduate-level studies in sustainable business or a related discipline.
Average tuition per credit hour: $536
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 10:1
ROI: NA

#6 University of Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

Bachelor’s in Environmental & Sustainability Studies

Website
Points: 14

The University of Utah offers an undergraduate degree in Environmental & Sustainability Studies with several emphases like:

  • land management
  • conservation & place
  • air, water, & health
  • ecological literacy & social change
  • climate & energy
  • food systems & community resilience.

There is a minimum of 21 courses that students need to complete as they learn how to enhance the sustainability of the environment. They develop a deeper understanding of evolution and the various conservation methods to help preserve the planet for the greater good. The program explores:

  • conservation-based management strategies
  • complex relationships between food and the global ecosystem
  • interrelatedness of energy systems
  • the challenges to sustaining good quality air and water.


Average tuition per semester credit hour: $8,952
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 17:1
ROI ( College Factual): 7.4%

#5 Everglades University

Boca Raton, Florida

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Policy and Management
Program

Website
Points: 14

Top 10 Colleges for an Online Degree in Miami, FL

Everglades University offers a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Policy and Management. It addresses business and diverse management skills needed for environment management. The 123-credit curriculum includes courses like:

  • environmental policy
  • management skills
  • business techniques

There are also specific subjects relating to technical and occupational fields like industrialization and its impact on environmental technology, and the environment in general. Students develop critical thinking skills, communication skills, and management skills and understand regulatory policies associated with ecological sustainability. Graduates will have broad-based knowledge of environmental sustainability, environmental planning, and related emerging fields. Graduates are prepared to work in many environmentally-related professions.
Average tuition per year: $8,760
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 18:1
ROI: NA

#4 Brooklyn College

Brooklyn, New York

Urban Sustainability B.A.

Website
Points: 14

Brooklyn College in New York offers a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Sustainability with concentrations in:

  • environmental science
  • economics and business management
  • sociology

The environmental science option requires 58.5 credits for degree completion. Students develop the skills, knowledge, and understanding needed to cultivate sustainable practices and policies that can benefit the community as a whole. Graduates are prepared to plan and implement sustainability measures in various urban environments with long-term benefits in mind. The unique interdisciplinary approach of this program examines the dynamics of social and natural systems. Students explore creative and hands-on solutions that foster:

  • environmental protection
  • social equity
  • economic vitality.


Average tuition per semester: $3,465
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 18:1
ROI: NA

#3 Western Colorado University

Gunnison, Colorado

B.A. in Environment & Sustainability (ENVS)

Website
Points: 15

Western Colorado University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Environment & Sustainability (ENVS). It’s designed for students who want to understand how humans and their actions impact the natural environment. Students learn about various social, economic, and political issues along with the functioning and structures of the conventional systems. They explore how these aspects influence each other and how to contain and stem unsustainable activities by humans. The program prepares students to connect ideas, individuals, and organizations and become effective interdisciplinary communicators. Graduates are prepared to enact positive change throughout their natural and social communities.
Average tuition per year: $6816
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 19:1
ROI ( College Factual): 8%

#2 South Seattle College

Seattle, Washington

Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) in Sustainable Building Science Technology (SBST)

Website
Points: 15

South Seattle College offers a Bachelor of Applied Science in Sustainable Building Science Technology. It’s designed to help student learn:

  • complex building codes
  • energy codes
  • building science
  • facility management

Students develop an in-depth understanding of building functions that can help them develop structures that are economical, durable and sustainable. Graduates are prepared to apply expertise and systems knowledge to support highly technical building operations. The 180-credit program offers the pathway to becoming a skilled Building Science Professional. The curriculum builds on students’ prior education and work experience to help them launch successful careers in sustainable building management.
Average tuition per credit hour: $110.26
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 17:1
ROI: NA

#1 Glenville State College

Glenville, West Virginia

Bachelor’s in Environmental Science

Website
Points: 16

Glenville State College in West Virginia offers an Environmental Science concentration through the Natural Resource Management degree program. The 128-credit program helps students develop the knowledge and technical understanding of how to manage environmental problems. The program provides a foundation in the pure and applied sciences. This prepares students to resolve issues in sustainability and focus on handling complex environmental issues. Graduates have the knowledge and technical skills needed to prevent or define and manage environmental problems. They develop an understanding in the areas of:

  • ecology
  • waste management
  • energy resource
  • environmental media
  • health and safety concepts.


Average tuition per year: $3,654
Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 17:1
ROI: NA

More About the Bachelor of Sustainability Degree

What does a Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability entail?

A Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability is designed for students who want to make a positive impact on the environment around them. Their study leads them towards a career related to environmental issues and the best ways to bring about sustainability. Some of these efforts include:

  • reducing air pollution
  • improving water quality
  • managing resources
  • implementing procedures for improvements

Some programs combine the study of business administration with sustainability or environmental science. This combination allows students to learn about governmental policies, economics, and societal issues.
An undergraduate study of sustainability involves:

  • science
  • technology
  • engineering
  • mathematics
  • policy
  • legislative matters

Students also learn how governance can have positive and negative effects on earth systems. Coursework may also include:

  • the management of ecosystems and food systems
  • sustaining adequate food supply
  • food production
  • waste disposal
  • safe farming methods.

What are the Career Options for a Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability?

A Bachelor of Sustainability degree program prepares students for varied careers in engineering, science, and business. Here’s a quick glimpse at some:

  • Conservation Scientist
  • Environmental Scientist
  • atmospheric scientists
  • Agricultural engineer
  • Urban Planner
  • Environmental engineer
  • Environmental engineering technician
  • compliance officers
  • policymakers

Career Prospects and Salary with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs for environmental scientists and related positions will grow 8% through 2028, a faster than average occupational growth. Though formal education in sustainability is new, it is a rapidly growing field. There aren’t too many schools in the nation that offer graduate and undergraduate degrees in sustainability. But the growing demand is slowly leading into exciting career opportunities.

Are bachelor in Sustainability programs accredited?

Accreditation by a national body or board for degree programs in sustainability is yet to be established. However, most bachelor’s and master’s degree programs offered by leading universities are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and similar organizations.

How to Choose a Bachelor’s in Sustainability Program

Choosing the right school and degree is important for career growth and success. Some of the things students need to keep in mind are the school’s location. If he or she is attending classes on campus, then food, boarding, and other miscellaneous costs need to be taken into account. Living expenses are considerably less for day students who commute and stay at home. The school’s accreditation status, employment prospects, and professional certification/licensure standards are the other things to consider.
The type of program may affect the cost and graduation timeline. If one can transfer credits, then some of the costs may be mitigated. Some students complete the general education and prerequisite coursework at local community colleges and save a lot of money. Some of the community colleges have an understanding with their regional four-year institutions to offer direct transfer pathways into the degree programs. Though the curricula vary among schools, students have to complete the required credit hours for degree completion. They cover areas like:

  • sustainable communities
  • cultural anthropology
  • social science research
  • ecology
  • human impact on ecosystems
  • natural resource economics
  • internship experiences and capstone requirements.

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