“We cannot solve the problems that we have created with the same thinking that created them.”
– Albert Einstein

Biol 234 (Environmental Biology) students Stephanie Wnuck '10 and Ariel Aguiar '12 attempt to clean up an oil spill in a simulated habitat.

The Environmental Science Minor is an interdisciplinary program designed to serve science and engineering majors, as well as students of other disciplines interested in environmental careers or environmental matters.

The minor requires a total of 5 courses apportioned in 3 components: a core component, a technical component, and a policy/issues component. No more than three courses required (a) for the student’s major or (b) to satisfy Common Course of Study requirements may be counted towards the minor.  Students pursuing the minor are strongly encouraged to take 3 courses outside of their major and to pursue and environmentally-oriented Independent Study or Honors Thesis. Please note that some courses have prerequisites; it is the student’s responsibility to fulfill any prerequisites.  Students pursuing the minor must have the program of study approved by the program coordinator. Any course selection differing from those prescribed below requires a petition to the Environmental Science Minor Advisory Committee and approval of the Academic Progress Committee. Completion of the Semester in Environmental Science at the Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory (website here) satisfies all requirements for the Environmental Science Minor.

Courses Required for the Minor

* denotes courses that have prerequisites
† denotes courses that are not offered every year

Core Component – 2 Courses Required

Biol 234: Environmental Biology*†
Chem 252: Environmental Chemistry*
ChE 334: Chemical Processes in Environmental Engineering*†
CE 321: Introduction to Environmental Engineering*
Geol 110: Environmental Geology (should be taken during first or second year)

Technical Component – 2 Courses Required

Biol 225: Microbiology*
Biol 231: Ecology*
Biol 271: Marine Biology*
Biol 272: Conservation Biology*
Biol 332: Advanced Aquatic Ecology*†
Biol 341: Environmental Issues in Aquatic Ecosystems*
Biol 342: Botany and Biodiversity*†
CE 351: Water Resources Engineering*
CE 421: Hydrology*†
CE 422: Environmental Site Assessment*
CE 423: Water Quality*†
CE 424: Groundwater Hydrology*†
CE 425: Water Supply and Pollution Control*†
Geol 100: From Fire to Ice: An Introduction to Geology
Geol 105: Introduction to Meteorology
Geol 115: Earth’s Climate: Past, Present, and Future
Geol 120: Geological Disasters: Agents of Chaos
Geol 150: Geologic Evolution of the Hawaiian Islands (January Interim)†
Geol 205: Oceanography*
Geol 210: Hydrogeology*†
Geol 300: Earth Surface Processes*
Geol 310: Environmental Geology*†
Geol 311: River Form and Function*†
Geol 322/CE 464: Environmental Geophysics*†

Policy/ Issues Component – 1 Course required

AMS 362: Designs for Living: Environmentalism, Counterculture, and American Utopias
Biol 341: Environmental Issues in Aquatic Ecosystems*
Econ 335: Environmental Economics*†
EGRS 230: Environmental Justice
EGRS 251: Engineering and Public Policy
EVST 100: Introduction to the Environment: A System Approach
EVST/A&S 201: Culture and the Environment
EVST 210: Waste and Environmental Policy: Laws, Habits, and Culture
EVST 220/INDS 114: Lands and Waters of the Mid-Atlantic Region
EVST 254: Cultures of Nature
EVST 270: Global Environmental History
EVST/A&S 315: Food, Culture, & Sustainable Societies
Govt 231: Global Environmental Politics
Hist 252: Transformation of the American Environment
VAST 203: Sustainability of Built Systems
VAST 204: Gender & Environmentalism
VAST 210: Agriculture, Ethics & the Environment
VAST 211: Oil, Politics, and the Environment
VAST214: Mapping Urban Ecology
VAST 218: Technological Development in the Third World
VAST 237: Media Presentation and Government Reaction to Scientific Information
VAST 240: Plastics in Our World
VAST 253: Global Climate Change
VAST 284: Natural/Social Disasters: Urban Planning and Social Death
VAST 290: Climate Change: The Facts, the Issues, and the Long-Term View

Environmental Science Minor Advisory Committee

Dru Germanoski

  • Program Coordinator and Committee Chair; Professor of Geology and Environmental Geosciences
  • e-mail: germanod@lafayette.edu
  • phone: (610) 330-5196

Steven Mylon

  • Assistant Professor of Chemistry
  • e-mail: mylons@lafayette.edu
  • phone: (610) 330-5825

Megan Rothenberger

  • Assistant Professor of Biology
  • email: rothenbm@lafayette.edu
  • phone: (610) 330-5459

Javad Tavakoli

  • Professor of Chemical Engineering
  • e-mail: tavakoli@lafayette.edu
  • phone: (610) 330-5433