Environmental Studies Department

1970 US postage stampe: save our cities, save our soil, save our air, save our water50 Years On: A Brief History of Earth Day
An article and resources about the first Earth Day held on April 22, 1970, including images of the CSB/SJU 1970 Earth Day program of events!

solve climate by 2030CSB/SJU environmental studies was the host of the Minnesota power dialog on climate change and justice. Events were held in all 50 states on April 7 - check out the videos!

students at COP 25 negotiations

COP26 will be held in Glasgow, Scotland sometime in 2021! CSB/SJU student delegates attend the COP negotations each year as part of our Global Climate Policy class. The students conduct  original research at the COP. Visit the UNFCCC website to learn more!

Environmental studies major Jack Pieper '21 and George Maurer '88 connect as artists and as Johnnies.

Dr. Corrie GrosseEE 30 Under 30

Congratulations to environmental studies professor, Corrie Grosse, for being selected as one of the EE 30 Under 30 by the North American Association for Environmental Education! There were 175 nominees from all over the world. The award recognizes individuals from around the world who are making a difference through environmental education. Read Corrie's EE 30 Under 30 bio.

Ashley Ver Burg Soukup, class of 2010

Ashley Ver Burg Soukup ('10) selected one of 'Best and Brightest' MBAs in 2018

Ashley is one of 100 students from MBA programs around the world selected for Poets and Quants annual honor. Read more about Ashley and her work before embarking on her MBA.

Sarah McLarnan Mountain

Sarah Mclarnan ('17) receives $50,000 EPA grant

Sarah is one of 35 students nationwide to be selected for a Greater Research Opportunities Undergraduate Fellowship and a $50,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Congratulations, Sarah!

"I have been grateful for the opportunity to explore my interests without confining myself to one path."See what else Sarah has to say!

Why environmental studies? Ask our students.


Jaden Bjorklund ('19)

"Be open minded and try to learn as much as possible. Get to know the professors because they will lead you towards success."

See what else Jaden has to say!

morgan c-s

Morgan Clark-Sager ('20)

"My advice is simple. Have fun. The program offers many classes with different subjects so that there is something for everyone."

See what else Morgan has to say!


Libby Ames ('19)

"My goal coming into college was to find something that I was passionate about, and I have found that in studying environmental issues."

See what else Libby has to say!

zach fritz

Zachary Fritz ('19)

"I was able to develop extremely valuable skills that I can apply to future internships or jobs."

See what else Zach has to say!


Overview of Program

  • Environmental studies was established as a major in 2003. Six department faculty, joined by two dozen faculty from other departments, offer students a unique and innovative curriculum.
  • Our curriculum is based on a core of interdisciplinary environmental studies courses that approach questions of sustainability in a variety of contexts including food, energy, gender, ecology, policy, and more.
  • Students can choose from a range of environmentally-oriented courses in art, communication, ecology, economics, ethics, literature, geology, history, nutrition, politics, psychology, sociology, and other fields in addition to our core environmental studies curriculum.
  • A focus on undergraduate research and experiential learning offers opportunities for summer research assistantships, internships, field experiences, and a capstone thesis project for all majors.
  • The natural setting of Saint Ben's and Saint John's, including wetlands, streams, forests, lakes and prairies, offers a unique environment for students to explore, conduct research, and learn about environmental education and land stewardship.
  • Graduates of the environmental studies program can be found in a variety of places after graduation. Many graduates choose to volunteer or pursue further education, while many can be found in a number of unique career paths.
  • Saint John's Abbey installed approximately 1800 solar panels on 3.9 acres of former farmland in the fall of 2009. At the time of installation, the solar farm was the largest in Minnesota.
  • In 2005, CSB/SJU designated environmental studies as one of the first Signature Programs of the two institutions. The designation is part of a strategic planning initiative to strengthen and highlight interdisciplinary programs.

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