The program in Environmental Sciences offers the student the opportunity for study in the areas of environmental quality, restoration and natural resources. These areas encompass a broad range of practical problems which cross the boundaries of applied natural sciences, mathematics, economics, management and law.
The program is not admitting new students into the program for 2021-22.
|Program||Locations||Major / Total Credits|
|Environmental Science MS||MS - Master of Science||
||34 / 34|
Policies & Faculty
In addition to meeting the general admission requirements of College of Graduate Studies and Research, students must have completed the following courses with a minimum grade of C: One year of Chemistry, College Algebra, General Ecology, and Plant Science or Animal Diversity. Students lacking some of the admission requirements may be conditionally admitted to the program. Conditionally admitted students are given one academic year to complete coursework deficiencies.
Environmental Sciences is a Program in the Department of Biological Sciences. Graduate assistantships are available through the Department of Biological Sciences.
There are diverse opportunities for employment in the area of environmental sciences. Numerous opportunities exist in environmental analysis and monitoring of environmental media (water, soil, air, indoor air, organisms, food, biological fluids, etc.). There are positions available in the regulation and monitoring of agricultural activities such as management of feed lots and septic systems; and in water planning on the county, regional, and state level. Moreover, there are positions in industrial (work place environment), data management, chemical evaluation, quality control and quality assurance and geographic information systems (GIS).
There is also a need for persons with Environmental Science coupled with emphasis in Business, Economics, Political Science, and/or Urban and Regional Studies.
Potential employers include the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); U.S. Geological Survey; the Department of Agriculture; the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); other federal, state and local government agencies, as well as private industry. Many of these employers study chemicals to determine if they are harmful, their mode of action, how they move in the environment, and whether they are carcinogenic or teratogenic (causing cancer or birth defects). The Environmental Sciences Program works with the EPA, as well as other federal and state agencies, to secure grants which support faculty and graduate student research. These contacts may lead to internships and/or permanent employment opportunities for graduates.
Professional positions are usually available for persons with hands-on experience in analytical instrumentation used in the detection of environmental contaminants, environmental modeling, data management including quality control and quality assurance, and geographic information systems. Employment is often secured through contacts with advisors, industry, internships and other links between the Environmental Sciences Program with state and federal agencies and institutions. Students also interview for jobs at meetings held by such professional organizations as the American Chemical Society. The Career Development and Counseling Center at Minnesota State University, Mankato is another source of job information and offers workshops that help students prepare credentials and interview skills.
Advising, Thesis Track (30 Credits)
At the end of the first academic year the student should select a permanent advisor, an area of emphasis and a research thesis topic. The student with their advisor should select members from the graduate faculty to serve on the advisory committee. The advisory committee usually consists of 3-5 graduate faculty members. The advisory committee must include two members of the Department of Biological Sciences. The advisory committee is chaired by the student's advisor. The advisory committee reviews and approves the student's coursework, reseacy, and thesis. A thesis will prepare students for the more technical fields or doctoral programs.
Advising, Alternate Plan Paper (34 Credits)
At the end of the first academic year, the student should select a permanent advisor and an area of specialization. The student with their advisor should select members from the graduate faculty to serve on the advisory committee. The advisory committee usually consists of 3-5 graduate faculty members. The advisory committee must include two members of the graduate faculty from the Department of Biological Sciences. The advisory committee reviews and approves the student's course work and Alternate Plan Paper.
242 Trafton Science Center South(507) 389-2786
Credits: 3This lecture course introduces students to major federal environmental statutes, including the Clean Water Act; Clean Air Act; Safe Drinking Water Act; Resource, Conservation and Recovery Act; CERCLA (Superfund); Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act; Toxic Substances Control Act; Endangered Species Act; and Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. In addition, several state of Minnesota environmental statutes will be discussed.
Credits: 3This is a lecture course focusing on the sources and control of pollutants in air, soil, water, and groundwater. Hazardous waste treatment and the effects of pollutants on human health are also discussed.
Credits: 4The is a lecture/lab class designed to give students hands-on experience with various methods of environmental analysis coupled with the development of a research proposal. The class research project requires the collection and analysis of samples using methods approved by the Environmental Protection Agency. Quality control and Quality Assurance methods are emphasized.
Credits: 3This lecture course introduces students to the National Environmental Policy Act and requirements for Environmental Impact Statements and Environmental Assessment Worksheets at the federal and state Level. Phase I Environmental Assessment of land and buildings, an International Perspective on Environmental Assessments, and Economic and Social Impact Assessment are also discussed.
Credits: 2-3A variety of special topics within environmental science. Content of each special topics course will be different. May be retaken for credit under different topics.
Credits: 1-6Individual Research Project.
Credits: 1-12Experience in applied Environmental Sciences according to a prearranged training program.