2023-2024 College Catalog

Environment, Sustainability and Society, Bachelor of Arts

Program Coordinator:

Zsuzsanna Balogh-Brunstad (Geology) 

Teaching Faculty:

Robert Seguin; Jason Antrosio; Karl Seeley; Jeremy Wisnewski; Richard Barlow; Min Chung; Lisle Dalton; Katharine Kreisher; Mark Kuhlmann; David Griffing; Bradley Fest; Ryan Ceresola; Kyle Burke; James Buthman; Zsuzsanna Balogh-Brunstad; Peter Fauth; Amy Forster Rothbart; Kevin Schultz; Chad Anderson;

Program Steering Committee:

Zsuzsanna Balogh-Brunstad (Geology); Peter Fauth (Biology); Amy Forster Rothbart (Political Science); Kevin Schultz (Physics); Chad Anderson (History); Karl Seeley (Economics);


Environment, Sustainability and Society


Environment, Sustainability and Society


The interdisciplinary major in Environment, Sustainability and Society draws on the humanities, social sciences, and physical sciences. An Environment, Sustainability and Society major provides an interdisciplinary framework for studying some of the most compelling struggles of our time. Such a major takes advantage of Hartwick’s pre-existing liberal arts structure, while allowing for the study of the real-world issues shaping modern sustainable practices. This major is well positioned to meld the liberal arts and experiential learning to educate students to become conscientious citizens in a new era of sustainable awareness. With an Environment, Sustainability and Society major, Hartwick will be working to fulfill its promise as “a future-directed college, focusing on educating people in ways that will make them effective and contributing citizens to the world of their future.”

By completing a degree in Environment, Sustainability and Society, students will gain a competitive foothold on an expanding job market in “green careers.” Our graduates benefit from our strong liberal arts education and a degree in Environment, Sustainability and Society would allow them to gain a competitive foothold within an exciting and expanding job market. In recent years the need for employees with degrees in environmental areas and sustainability has been increasing.

The Environment, Sustainability and Society major exposes students to breadth of understanding as well as a depth of knowledge in the following ways:

Breadth. In order to effectively address environmental issues and create or discover solutions, students will need to draw from a broad base of thinking. The Foundation Courses requires students take courses that provide sufficient breadth in a variety of discipline areas.

Depth. The major provides disciplinary depth as students take upper-level courses in their chosen area in order to provide greater opportunities to develop comprehensive understanding and ability to use the intellectual tools of the discipline.

Experiential Component. The major requires all students to participate in an internship or field-based experience so that they are able to apply knowledge in a hands-on, real world experiential study. Requirement is met through an approved internship, independent study, or J Term program.

Capstone Senior Project. All students within the major complete a capstone senior project during their final year of study. The capstone project will apply the broad interdisciplinary nature of the major to identify a relevant environmental or sustainability issue and use the knowledge and tools from coursework to address the issues. The use of the Pine Lake Environmental Campus as a case study is encouraged.

Program Objectives

Understand existing and emerging environmental and sustainability issues affecting the natural world and society.

Identify environmental and sustainability issues and analyze the potential impact these issues could have on natural and human systems to proactively engage the world in a problem-solving manner.

Utilize a broad base in the liberal arts, combined with the specific training within the major to examine, analyze, and critically engage emerging issues and develop the capacity to create sustainable solutions to these issues.