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Loyola offers new interdisciplinary degrees on the environment

Loyola press release - June 13, 2011

Beginning fall 2011, Loyola University New Orleans will offer three new interdisciplinary degree majors in the environment. Three major degree tracks will be offered including Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science with a concentration in biological sciences; Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies with a concentration in the humanities; and Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies with a concentration in social sciences. Students can also pursue a minor in environmental studies.

"Loyola's commitment to new majors in environmental studies and environmental sciences responds to the growing need for professionals trained in both the policy and the science of the environment,” said Jo Ann Cruz, Ph.D., dean of Loyola’s College of Humanities and Natural Sciences. “It is also responsive to the importance of environmental issues for the region. Loyola University, with its nationally recognized scholars in the environmental field, is ideally suited to offer a program that is unique in its rigor and reach across the disciplines.”

The interdisciplinary program in the environment provides students the opportunity to engage in a broad and integrated study of the environment from a variety of academic viewpoints. The program focuses on understanding the relationships between humans and the natural world from biological, physical, chemical, sociological, economic, cultural, philosophical and religious perspectives.

The curriculum introduces students to current global and regional environmental issues. It also provides students with the knowledge and problem-solving skills that will enable them to play an active role in understanding global and regional ecosystems and contributing to their future well-being.

Depending on the area of concentration, students will be prepared for entry into graduate or professional schools and career paths in a diversity of fields such as environmental research, environmental policy/law, sustainability planning and development, natural resource management and conservation, environmental communications, environmental education, creative writing, environmental consulting and many others.

“Having this degree program, especially in New Orleans, is vital because it allows our students to understand important environmental issues and to participate in environmental scholarship and hands-on practical experiences that will contribute to this region’s recovery and long-term viability,” said Paul Barnes, Ph.D., the Rev. John H. Mullahy, S.J., Eminent Chair of Environmental Biology and director of the Environment Program. “The opportunity for independent research, which is not typical of many undergraduate experiences, will be a great tool for our students as they leave and pursue careers in various environmental fields.”

For more information, contact Barnes at pwbarnes@loyno.edu or call 504-865-2008.