Inquire at Marygrove College
Visit us at Marygrove College
Apply at Marygrove College
a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z #

Environmental Studies

Environmental Studies

Steve Scribner, Ph.D.
Liberal Arts Building, Room 324
Direct: (313) 927-1321
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Environmental Studies Minor

Abigail Fusaro, Ph.D.
Maria Goodrich
Steven Scribner, Ph.D.

Environmental Studies Overview

In lieu of needed changes in the economy, energy production, business practices, environmental issues and governmental programs and incentives, “Green Jobs” have become a common phrase in the job market. People with an interdisciplinary background ranging from science, business, economic, and politics are going to be needed to examine and create solutions to complex issues and problems. With an environmental studies minor you will have a wide variety of excellent career opportunities available to you: from environment-related jobs with corporations, government departments at the federal, state, and local level, and environmental organizations.

Environmental Biologist • Environmental Chemist • Field Technician • Hazardous Waste Manager • Laboratory Technician • Lawyer • Pollution Inspector • Refuse Manager • Risk Assessor • Writer • Environmental Manager • Environmental Program Director

The challenge of maintaining and creating a sustainable environment is one of the most pressing problems facing our society and world today. The Environmental Studies Program draws information, ideas and concepts from the natural sciences and social sciences to deal with complex and interdisciplinary environmental issues. The program is based upon the recognition that environmental and resource problems are not just biological, geological, economic, or political but a complex combination of many disciplines. Therefore, this program is structured as an interdisciplinary study of natural and social sciences to combine knowledge across traditional disciplinary lines. This information is essential for an interdisciplinary assessment, analysis and evaluation of environmental problems.

Program Scheduling
The Environmental Studies minor is primarily a day program, although some courses are offered in the evening on a rotating schedule.

Transfer Student Information:
The department accepts transfer credits according to the college guidelines. However, major coursework older than 10 years, from time of admittance, will be transferred in as elective credit and may not be applied to the major. Students may petition to the department chair for the older credits to be applied towards the major.

Credit for Prior Learning
Learning derived from life experiences and from individual study is of significant academic value and can often be equated with college-level studies. Students may earn credit by examination, tutorial study and cooperative work experience. Permission of the department chair is required to select these options. Not more than four credit hours in cooperative work experience may be counted within the 120 credit hours required for a degree.

Academic Performance Standard
Only required courses with a grade of C or better can be applied to fulfill the Environmental Studies minor.

Internship/Cooperative Education
It is strongly encouraged that students participate in a summer undergraduate research experience either with a Marygrove College faculty member, or by securing an off-campus internship or fellowship before they graduate. Students may receive elective credit for an internship through ENV 388, ENV 488, and/or ENV 491.


A minor in Environmental Studies consists of a total of 20 credit hours from the following courses:

ENV 135 Earth Science
ENV 201 Ecology and the Environment
ENV 320 Introduction to Environmental Sustainability
ENV 370 Environmental Policy and Regulation

Electives:  Take a minimum of six credits from the courses below

GEO 199 Geography
ENV/CHM 350 Environmental Chemistry
BIO 234 Botany 
PSY 305 Introductory Statistics

Environmental Science Course Descriptions

ENV 135   Earth Science  4 hours
Prerequisite: LS 105; MTH 099 Term Fall (odd). Fee: yes. General Education option.
Physical and chemical processes related to the past, present and future behavior of the Earth system and the energy systems that drive these processes. The course will focus on the Earth’s materials, the Earth’s surface and the Earth’s interior. Laboratory included.

ENV 201   Ecology and the Environment 4 hours
Prerequisites: LS 105, ENG 107, MTH 099; Term Fall (even), Summer (odd). Fee: yes. General Education option. Cross-listed with BIO 201
This course is a survey of the basic scientific concepts underlying ecology and an examination of how humans interact with, depend upon, and affect natural resources and ecosystems. Special attention will be paid to the magnitude and scope of global and local environmental problems, with a focus on measures that can be taken by individuals and communities to address those problems. Emphasis is placed on critical thinking skills and use of the scientific method. Laboratory included.

ENV 300 Weather and Climate 2 hours
Prerequisite: ENV 135; Term TBA. Fee: yes.
This course will orient you to the fundamentals of weather and climate. The course seeks to answer questions such as: Why is there weather in the first place? What drives the movement of air and water around the globe? How do the climates of various places differ, and what factors drive these differences? Why do the great majority of the world’s peoples live near the coasts? How might the climate be changing, and what factors might be driving these changes? Various aspects of meteorology will be discussed, including solar radiation, global circulation, winds, stability, precipitation processes, weather systems, and severe weather. Basic physical principles behind the weather, terminology, and weather analysis will be explored.

ENV 320   Introduction to Environmental Sustainability 3 hours
Prerequisites: ENG 108; ENV 201,  Term: TBA
This course introduces students to the dynamics between the influences of social, economical and environmental factors important in any analysis of environmental sustainability. The course will examine both historical and current perspectives of sustainability and the challenges in creating a balance between development and the environment.

ENV 350   Environmental Chemistry 3 hours
Prerequisites: CHM 241; CHM 325; Term: Fall (even). Cross-listed with CHM 350
Introduces students to environmental chemistry, the branch of chemistry dealing with the origins, transport, reactions, effects and fates of chemical species in the water, air, soil and living environments.

ENV 370   Environmental Policy and Regulations 3 hours
Prerequisites: ENG 108; Term: Varies. Cross-listed with IS 324C
This course is intended as a simple, practical introduction into America’s environmental politics, policies and regulations. It will answer questions such as: who governs the environmental regulations, what are examples of these regulations, are the regulations and politicians focusing on the most important priorities? What are the environmental concerns in Michigan and the Metropolitan Detroit Area?

ENV 388   Cooperative Field Experience 1-4 hours
Prerequisites: Junior standing, science major, departmental approval; Term: Fall, Winter, Summer
Supervised work experience in activity related to an area of specialization. This is planned in consultation with advisor, co-op supervisor and employer. Recording, reporting and evaluation of experience will be required.

ENV 410   Special Topics in Environmental Studies: Urban Issues 3 hours
Prerequisites: ENV 320 Term: TBA.
Advanced study of urban environmental problems ranging from health, crime, pollution and policy.

ENV 488   Cooperative Field Experience 1-4 hours
Prerequisites: Senior standing, science major, departmental approval; Term: Fall, Winter, Summer
Supervised work experience in activity related to an area of specialization. This is planned in consultation with advisor, co-op supervisor and employer. Recording, reporting and evaluation of experience will be required.

ENV 491 Independent Study 1-4 hours
Prerequisites: Permission of instructor; science major or minor; Junior status; Term: Fall, Winter, Summer
Opportunity to earn credit for the independent study of a course not listed in the catalog as a specific offering. By arrangement.