Environmental Studies
Holloway Hall

ENVR—Environmental Studies Program

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Wednesday, September 10 • Henson 243, 7 pm   Internships in Environmental Studies                Featuring Environmental Studies students: Students share their internship experiences and projects from the previous summer and spring.

Thursday, September 11 • Pavilion/Lawn of Seagull Square, 6:30 pm  Teresa Whitaker and Frank Schwarz, “Songs of the Chesapeake,” Music and Stories of the Chesapeake Bay  Musicians Teresa Whitaker and Frank Schwarz perform songs from and about the Chesapeake, hosted by Tom Horton.

Saturday, September 13, Living History event at Pocomoke River State Park  Local historical organizations such as the Purnell Museum, Pocomoke Indian Nation (Dugout Canoe), Furnace Town, the Salisbury Zoo, Civil War-era Living Historians, the Nabb Research Center, and the Ocean City Life Guard Station Museum will be on hand to share their specialties. On Sunday the Park will host an Auto tour of the Civilian Conservation Corps Camp ruins, and some of the structures they built during the 1930s. The event will focus on Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics and  the Leave What You Find principle. 

Saturday, September 20 Assateague Coastal Trust Cleanup, Assateague State Park, 8-12    ENVR will provide van transportation to this fun & important cleanup.

Wednesday, September 24 • Henson 243, 7 pm  Celebrating Nature: A Conversation between a Naturalist and a Poet                                                                                                                                     Featuring Ron Gutberlet and Nancy Mitchell, Biology and Environmental Studies Department faculty Continuing the Environmental Studies tradition of pairing faculty from diverse disciplines discussing a common theme, this offering draws from the talents of poet Nancy Mitchell, and biologist Ron Gutberlet, in a discussion of the art and act of celebrating and studying nature.

Wednesday, October 8 • Henson 243, 7 pm Empires on Ice: Science Nature, and  the Making of the

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“How will you walk this earth?” asks Wayne Gilchrest, former US Congressman and Environmental Studies adjunct professor. His question, posed to a group of ENVR students in a summer kayaking class, is central to our program—for whether you seek to become a professional environmental advocate or wish to enrich your own understanding of the world about you, we encourage you, in the words of Thoreau, to live deliberately.

SU’s fast-growing and exciting Environmental Studies Program integrates courses in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences to give students the tools they need to examine complex environmental issues in depth and assess them from a variety of perspectives. The program combines a solid academic foundation with extensive experiential learning opportunities: frequent opportunities for research and community engagement provide ENVR graduates with a substantial foundation for further graduate study or meaningful careers in environmental fields.

A Dynamic Environment

For the outdoor adventurer who loves marshes, rivers, forests and barrier islands, there's no better-situated university on the east coast. With the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean next door, students can explore some of the mid-Atlantic’s most intact river systems, the Nanticoke and the Pocomoke; study coastal barrier islands such as Cedar and Assateague; visit major wildlife refuges at Blackwater and Chincoteague; observe working watermen’s communities on Smith and Tangier Islands; and investigate close to a hundred thousand acres of wetlands.

Getting Our Hands Dirty

ENVR majors gain valuable real-world experience through a wide variety of activities. Opportunities for study abroad abound: ENVR students can snorkel coral reefs in Honduras, investigate glacial landscapes in Iceland, or explore biodiversity in the Amazon. Some share meals with rural villagers in India; others walk Shinto Buddhist pilgrimage routes in Japan.

Kayaking the Nanticoke riverCloser to home, they canoe remote Eastern Shore creeks, kayak to Smith Island (Maryland's only offshore inhabited island, with a three-century tradition of harvesting the bay) and witness the mass spawning of horseshoe crabs in Delaware Bay. They study organic gardening with Jay Martin, the farmer who started Community Sponsored Agriculture on the Eastern Shore, and investigate an ever-changing range of Chesapeake Bay Topics with award-winning author Tom Horton. Green Floor Living-Learning Community students share common ENVR classes, develop environmentally-oriented activities, and perform green service projects. ENVR students intern in organizations as diverse as the Maryland Coastal Bays, US Geological Survey, Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center, Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, Irvine Nature Center in Baltimore, and the Maryland Department of the Environment. Three ENVR majors have been awarded EPA Greater Research Opportunity Fellowships.

Stewardship

Stewardship and advocacy opportunities comprise an important part of our program. Environmental Studies students have worked to ban arsenic in chicken feed, helped political candidates push for storm water regulations, removed invasive privet from a local forests, and taught area middle school students how to monitor electricity use. They held a fundraiser to purchase an Environmental Studies greenhouse, built raised bed gardens at a nearby elementary school, and mapped out an interpretive trail at a local forest preserve. ENVR students are growing vegetables on campus, working to develop an on-campus sustainability tour for both students and visitors, and are developing SU’s first-ever permaculture garden, which will serve as a learning laboratory for both SU and the community.

The Environmental Studies Program offers a flexible and relevant mix of coursework and field opportunities—and, above all, the chance to cultivate what Rachel Carson termed "a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would last throughout life."

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