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Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences

Major to Career

As the nation's emphasis on the environment, agriculture, and  natural resources continues to grow, there is an increasing demand for employees in these areas. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, students seeking a career in these fields can look forward to a far stronger job market than graduates of many other disciplines. 

Established in 1974, our department nurtures students' perspectives on environmental issues and provides them with a thorough knowledge of environmental topics. As environmental problem-solvers, students examine a range of subjects that arise from the interaction of humans with the environment.  The curriculum includes studies in earth system science, natural resources, agriculture, geography, and geology. 

The Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences major includes three career-ready emphasis area choices:

Environmental Systems: Students selecting the environmental systems  emphasis will focus on the interactions between physical, biological, and chemical earth processes. Assessing environmental science topics such as water quality, air quality, soil quality, and ecosystem health, among other areas, will inform natural resource and ecosystem management and protection. Students who select this emphasis will be prepared for science-based careers in environmental management, research, consulting, and protection. 

Human Dimensions: Students selecting the human dimensions emphasis will focus on the interactions between humans and the environment. Applying an understanding of human dimensions in environmental protection, environmental management, and natural resource use will inform environmental policy, influence positive public and private behavior changes related to the environment, and lead to more sustainable food and natural resource systems. Students who select this emphasis will be prepared for careers in environmental policy, environmental community education and engagement, and environmental advocacy and communication. 

Agricultural Systems: Students selecting the agricultural systems emphasis will focus on sustainable agriculture production and its role in food security and environmental health. Improved practices in the production of food, feed, fiber, and fuel will be essential to provide the resources required of a growing global population, while combating the grand environmental challenges of the 21st century. Students who select this emphasis will be prepared for the variety of applied science-based careers in agriculture and food production.

 

A grades 7-12 Science Teaching option is also available.

A video with Dr. Souchek and Dr. Colclasure discussing program opportunities is here.

The signature curriculum of the department also includes courses and capstone research opportunities in:

  • Natural Resources and Environmental Science

  • Soil Science, Crop Production, and Animal Production and Sustainability

  • Environmental Policy and Sustainability

  • Environmental Literature, History, and Economics

  • Alternative Energy and Climate Change

  • Geographic Information Systems

Research Opportunities

The curriculum includes studies in earth system science, natural resources, agriculture, geography, and geology. Our $10.2 million Lied Science and Mathematics Building provides an exceptional environment for study, research and interaction with:

  • Extensive group work

  • Individualized experiments

Outdoor research opportunities also exist. The campus is included in the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum and has been certified as wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation.  A Nature Explore Outdoor Classroom has been constructed in the woodland on the south side of campus. 

Available Minors:

Agriculture and Natural Resources

Environmental Science

 

University Affiliations

Doane is a University Affiliate of the Global Council for Science and the Environment and the Council of Environmental Deans and Directors. Doane is also a member of the Campus Greening EcoLeaders program and has signed the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitment. 

 

Environmental and Earth Sciences Faculty

Blake Colclasure - Assistant Professor

Icon_Phone Created with Sketch. 402.826.6728

Russ Souchek - Professor

Icon_Phone Created with Sketch. 402.826.8238