As we stated last week, the Department of Environmental Studies and Sciences is temporarily suspending the Environmental Studies minor as of December 20, 2013. Students currently registered in the Environmental Studies minor are not affected by this suspension, and will be able to complete the minor on schedule. We will accept applications from interested students who have not yet entered the program up to and including December 20.
Why are we suspending the minor at this time? In the rocket-ship trajectory of the Environmental Studies & Sciences program over the past few years – achieving full department status, acquiring additional faculty, building a strong and diverse collection of courses – we have grown (and are still growing!) at an incredible pace, and we have not always been able to give in-depth and focused consideration to all of the many and varied aspects of the Studies and Sciences programs. This includes evolution of the Environmental Studies Minor. So we need to take a moment to catch up!
We have gained valuable insights from both our own and student experiences over these past few years as a department, and in fact just completed this past fall a thorough evaluation of all aspects of the Environmental Studies and Sciences programs at Ithaca College, with an eye to making ENVS programs still better and even stronger. We are now midway through a curriculum redesign for both the Environmental Studies and Environmental Sciences majors, as well as the Environmental Studies minor, in order to guarantee that students will leave Ithaca College with the best and broadest possible preparation for a future in research, academics, applied resource management, law and policy, or wherever students’ degrees and interests take them!
So…please be patient as we refine and reevaluate requirements for the minor. We expect to resume accepting Environmental Studies minor applications in the fall of 2015, and will keep the campus informed as the program evolves. Meanwhile, an alternative option exists for the interim: H&S students who entered the College this past fall, and are interested in designing a "self-designed suite" of courses related to environmental studies issues in lieu of a minor, can do so with ENVS department guidance through the ICC Complementary Liberal Arts program.
If you have any further questions, suggestions, or concerns, please contact chair Jason Hamilton (firstname.lastname@example.org, 274-1439).