Geography, Environment, and Sustainability

Geography, Environment, and Sustainability

What’s Unique about Geography, Environment, and Sustainability at UNCG?

  • Geography offers a bridge between social and physical sciences designed to address environmental problems, improve international commerce, and increase understanding and respect across cultures.
  • The Department of Geography, Environment, and Sustainability houses labs that support teaching and research studies in dendrochrology (tree ring studies), soils and regolith analysis, and Geographic Information Systems.
  • Class sizes are small. Freshman classes typically have fewer than 80 students; upper-level courses fewer than 50 students; and computer mapping, GIS, and physical lab classes fewer than 25 students.
  • A geography summer field school is commonly offered that provides an opportunity for extended travel and directed study in interesting areas across the United States and the world.
  • An accelerated degree program creates the potential for undergraduates who maintain a GPA of 3.5 or higher to complete both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in five years.

Academic Clubs and Organizations

  • Gamma Theta Upsilon (international geography honor society)
  • The Geography Club (sponsors biweekly lunch seminars with faculty and professional speakers)

Student Opportunities

Career Experience through Internships that include:

  • Guilford National Military Park – Creation of GIS system for park management
  • City of Winston-Salem – Development of zoning regulations for neo-traditional neighborhoods
  • City of Greensboro, Stormwater Services Division – Mapping stormwater flows and water quality
  • Watershed Concepts – Creation of flood zone maps for FEMA

Graduates/Careers

Examples of potential entry-level jobs include population analyst, economic development consultant, environmental consultant, water resource manager, GIS analyst, cartographer, earth scientist, and urban or transportation planner.

Professional Organizations and Accreditation

  • Most faculty members belong to the Association of American Geographers (AAG), the Southeastern Division of the AAG, and the North Carolina Geographic Society.
  • Other faculty members are members of more specialized organizations such as the American Meteorological Society, the Population Reference Bureau, and the North American Cartographic Society.

What’s Unique about the Environment and Sustainability Program at UNCG?

The program offers a great deal of flexibility to allow students to select courses related to their personal and career interests. For example, students interested in environmental journalism can include courses on journalism in their program, and students who are interested in careers in government agencies can include courses on politics and public policy. The director works closely with individual students to select appropriate courses .

Academic Clubs and Organizations

  • UNCGreen: A student organization dedicated to trying to make UNCG more sustainable and environmentally friendly.
  • Fossil Free UNCG: This organization partners with UNCGreen to help UNCG divest and move away from fossil fuels.
  • Food Recovery Network: This organization provides opportunities to help feed the hungry and reduce food waste.
  • UNCG Student Garden Club: This club runs an organic garden on campus for use by individuals and groups.

Student Opportunities

Students are encouraged to include an internship in their major. Internships provide great opportunities for professional experience, career networking, and community service. Recent internships include the Greensboro Natural Science Center, the Guilford Courthouse National Military Park (United States Park Service), the Piedmont Environmental Center, the Piedmont Land Conservancy, the Guilford County Environmental Health Division, several state parks, the North Carolina Sierra Club, the Greensboro Public Library (environmental branch), and the Office of Sustainability at UNCG. Several internships are also available in local businesses.

Students with good grades should consider participating in the Lloyd International Honors Disciplinary Honors Program in Environmental and Sustainability Studies, which includes taking small classes with other honors students, working closely with professors, and writing a senior honors thesis. We also encourage environmental studies majors to study abroad. In recent years, students have studied in Spain, Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, and Morocco. Students can also compete for undergraduate research assistantships, which allow top students to receive a small stipend to work closely with a professor on a research project.

Graduates/Careers

Career options include jobs with local, state, and federal agencies, jobs in business, and positions in nonprofit organizations. Be ing an interdisciplinary program, students are prepared for work in many areas such as environmental education, sustainability programs, recreation and tourism, environmental journalism, scientific research, environmental activism and lobbying, and government and public policy. For a complete guide to possible careers in environmental studies, please see our online “careers” page.

Professional Organizations and Accreditation

The Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences is the primary academic association for Environmental and Sustainability Studies. There is no special accreditation of environmental studies programs.

Visit Website

Geography, Environment, and Sustainability

237 Graham Building

336.334.3912

Department Chair/Director:
Corey Johnson

Available Curriculum

Majors:
B.A. in Geography, B.A. with a concentration in Environmental Studies, B.A. with a concentration in Sustainability Studies, B.A. with a concentration in Environmental & Sustainability Studies

Minors:
Geography, Environmental Studies, Sustainability Studies

Graduate:
M.A. in Applied Geography, Ph.D. in Geography, Post-Baccalaureate Certificates in Global & Regional Studies in Geography and Urban & Economic Development

Common Interests

Adventure & Travel
Biology
Climate
Engineering
Environment
Geography
Global Studies
Government & Politics
Human Behavior
Society
STEM