Get involved in sustainability at a time when it's needed most

The Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and Policy at St. Edward’s University prepares you to protect and conserve all aspects of our environment. With increasing awareness of the need for a more sustainable society, there is a growing demand for graduates in this field. In this program, you will to learn to analyze natural resource policies and help solve current environmental problems. Throughout the program, you will develop solutions by exploring the physical and biological processes that maintain life.

The program is housed in the school of Behavioral and Social Sciences with significant involvement from Natural Sciences faculty.

You will take a combination of:
  • Core requirements in ENSP, ethics and political science
  • Supporting courses in lab based natural sciences
  • Courses within the chosen emphasis: Political Science, Economics, Biology, Environmental Science and Policy, Sociology or Chemistry
Throughout your coursework, you will examine issues such as:
  • Sustainability
  • The conservation of natural resources
  • Climate change
  • Soil and water conservation
  • Air quality
  • How human activities affect natural resources

Environmental Science and Policy students tackle issues highly relevant in today's society by working closely with government agencies, nonprofits, policy makers, scientists, members of the public, and corporations.


Graduates may work in a variety of different roles, including:
  • Environmental scientists in government
  • Restoration ecologists who restore ecosystems in the private sector
  • Environmental advocates who lobby for increased environmental protection
  • Environmental educators who introduce the public to the importance of environmental sustainability
  • Chief sustainability officers at large corporations

Graduates are also prepared for a wide range of graduate study options, including environmental engineering, marine biology, public policy and environmental law. 

Our alumni have found rewarding careers with:
  • Texas Parks and Wildlife
  • The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
  • Horizon Wind Energy
  • The Texas General Land Office

Outside the Classroom

Research and Exploration

You will discover how to investigate the causes of environmental degradation and analyze policy situations. You will also have the opportunity to participate in student-faculty field research with the goal of producing and presenting professional-level work at conferences. This is good preparation for the work you will do in your career, and also serves as proof of your ability to work in a professional capacity. You can use this work to demonstrate your capabilities to future employers.

Service Learning Courses

Our service learning courses offer hands-on, active experiences to enrich your academic credentials. Environmental Science and Policy majors work with the Sierra Club and other local environmental groups as part of their coursework in Environment and People, Local Environmental Controversies in Austin and the senior internship. Students also explore different ways to increase sustainability on campus, through project-based courses such as Research for Campus Sustainability and Designing a Climate Action Plan at St. Edward’s University.

Culminating Experience

Environmental Science and Policy majors conclude their undergraduate experience with a major research project and a senior internship at a local environmental organization. These initiatives ensure you’ll have the analytical skills and practical experience necessary to succeed in your chosen environmental profession.

Meet the Faculty

The research interests of Dr. Peter Beck, ENSP program coordinator, involve analyzing incentives for conservation in Africa and Texas and campus sustainability in the U.S.. He has published a variety of papers on environmental management and sustainability topics.

"As a teacher, I revel in discovering new interests while learning from my students. Experiencing their passion for exploring new ideas and innovative approaches to addressing our most pressing problems is something I truly value." — Peter Beck, associate professor of Environmental Science and Policy

Assistant Professor of Environmental Science and Policy Michael Wasserman studied the diets of wild animals to understand if they eat estrogenic plants and determine how this affects hormone levels and behavior. He did a study of red colobus monkeys in Kibale National Park in Uganda lasting almost an entire year. By comparing data from sample analysis of plants monkeys eat with their hormone levels (as measured in fecal samples) and their behavior (as cataloged in his notes), he determined the monkeys were consuming phytoestrogens in leaf diet. These meals correlated with an increase in steroid hormones and a higher level of aggression and mating in the males. Wasserman is still determining the significance of the monkeys’ leaf consumption. For example, he's investigating whether it’s a form of self-medication. Wasserman's research may provide insight into human diets.

About the Minor

Whether you are interested in environmental consulting, research management, or simply adding an environmental perspective to your prospective field of interest, a minor in Environmental Science and Policy can help you prepare for a more sustainably mindful career.

Required Coursework:
  • Introduction to Sustainability
  • Environmental Science
  • Environmental Geology
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • Two other upper-division ENSP courses