Environmental Science

Department: Natural Sciences
Delivery Method: On-Campus
Type: Major
Students in boat

UW-Superior’s environmental science major will provide you with excellent insight into the ways humans interact with land, water and air, and enable you to delve into some of the most pressing issues of our time.

With our ideal location next to the largest freshwater lake in the world, the program emphasizes environmental issues of regional importance to the Lake Superior area. You will also benefit from access to forests, wetlands, lakes and other natural resources. The program is strongly interdisciplinary, with courses taught by faculty from four departments along with research scientists at the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve (LSNERR) and Lake Superior Research Institute (LSRI). You’ll have ample opportunities to participate in hands-on laboratory research, field work, internships and paid student employment positions.


Experiential Learning

Students complete a capstone research or internship experience and benefit from ample hands-on research opportunities with faculty and scientists at LSRI and LSNERR.


State-of-the-Art Laboratories

Facilities include a honeybee apiary, greenhouse, GIS computer lab, and the new “floating classroom” research vessel arriving in 2024.



Located near the shore of Lake Superior and the Superior National Forest, students have access to one of the most abundant and pristine natural resource areas in North America.

What You’ll Learn

Environmental Science is a comprehensive major that will provides a broad array of coursework yet allows flexibility to add electives in your field of interest, such as chemistry, biology, water resources, geographic information systems or sustainability management.

Courses in this major will expose you to:

  • Major geological systems and components of the earth
  • Social and economic aspects of the environment
  • Ecology and aquatic science
  • Geographic information systems
  • A wide variety of upper-level electives

Students with this major often work with instructors and faculty members on research about:

  • Lake Superior and St. Louis River ecology
  • Microplastic pollution and aquatic toxicology
  • Aquatic invasive species
  • The geological history of Lake Superior region
  • Water resources

The value I get from my education at UWS is like nowhere else. With two majors in Computer Science and Environmental Studies (self-designed) along with two certificates in Sustainable Enterprise and Geographic Information Systems (GIS), I receive a quality education at half the cost of many other 4-year programs. Not only that, but the on-campus job opportunities allow me to get real experience in my fields of interest, which would be harder to get at larger schools.

Lucas Palomino Linares,
Computer Science, Environmental Studies (Self-Designed)

At UWS, small class sizes were nice to have opportunities to work with professors either for extra help or to participate in a research project. I would not have had the same experiences at a large university.

Chelsea Sobtzak,
Environmental Science

International Students

STEM Designated Degree Program

For international students, this major is a STEM Designated Degree Program which can qualify you to extend your post-graduation stay in the United States.

Program Outcomes/Career Opportunities

Many of our students choose to further their study in graduate school, and often report that they are better prepared than their peers from other institutions.

In addition, career opportunities are abundant within the following career fields for environmental sciences graduates:

  • Natural resource science
  • Environmental policy
  • Environmental health
  • Ecology

Ready to get started?

Applying to UW-Superior is easy and free for undergraduate students. Once your application is submitted, you’ll hear from us within just a few days. We’re here to help you every step of the way with any questions you may have, so why wait? Start your application today.  

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