Sustainability Studies

Sustainability Studies is an interdisciplinary concentration that draws from various disciplines to present students with the tools needed to become twenty-first-century leaders in sustainability. To advance climate justice, students must center the needs of marginalized communities and understand the complex, systemic injustices that have led us to this point: exploitation of the working poor, strain on healthcare institutions, mistreatment of women, anthropogenic mass extinctions, environmental degradation, extractive economic models and racialized disparities in access to clean air, uncontaminated drinking water, green spaces and a healthy diet. This concentration is founded on the notion that climate justice intersects with racial, social and economic justice. Aligning its curriculum with internationally accepted standards for sustainable practices, the Sustainability Studies concentration will build networks for students, help them develop solutions to emerging and pressing problems, and imagine a better future for humanity.


Internationally recognized faculty in fields including English, Interior Design, Fashion Management, Religious Studies, Environmental Science, Biology, Sociology, Marketing, International Business, Nutrition, Communication Arts, Criminal Justice and more collaborate with experts in fields of agriculture, forestry, architecture and the arts to enrich the student experience. Their work coheres with the UIW Mission, which compels us to recommit ourselves to the poor and disenfranchised, to be life-long learners who possess in-depth knowledge of the truth of our climate reality, to use faith and innovation to solve the environmental issues of today, to value the dignity of labor, to revere Creation as a source of life, and to prioritize service with and for others.

Sustainability Studies Concentration Degree Plan

18 Credit Hours Total

Required Course (3 hours):

  • ENGL 3371 Ecocriticism

Electives (15 hours):

  • At least one course (3 hours) from three of these five UIW schools:
    • College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
    • H-E-B School of Business and Administration
    • School of Math, Science and Engineering
    • School of Media and Design
    • Rosenberg School of Optometry
  • At least two courses (6 hours) at the 3000-4000 level
  • Students may enroll in any of the electives below or choose from a variety of other courses approved by the coordinator of the concentration. Exciting, novel courses are offered to keep students abreast of the latest changes in the quickly developing field of Sustainability Studies.
  • CRJU 3332 Environmental Crime
  • ENGL 1311L Composition I
  • ENGL 1312/1312H Composition II
  • ENGL 2310 World Literature Studies
  • ENGL 3361 Literary Theory
  • GOVT 2350 Environmental Politics
  • LEAD 1300 Emerging Leaders
  • LEAD 1350 Social Justice Leadership
  • PHIL 3385 Justice: Tradition and Transformation
  • PHIL 4350/4350H Bioethics
  • POLS 2350 Environmental Politics
  • RELS 3350 Environmental Theology and Ethics
  • RELS 3375 Catholicism Today
  • RELS 3381/3381H Christianity and Global Justice
  • ACCT 3312 Intermediate Accounting II
  • ACCT 3313 Cost Accounting
  • BMGT 4380 Integrated Business Analysis and Decision Making I
  • BMGT 4381 Integrated Business Analysis and Decision Making II
  • BMGT 4390 Business Ethics
  • BMKT 3331 Principles of Marketing
  • BMKT 4390 Marketing Management
  • ECON 2301 Principles of Macroeconomics
  • ECON 2302 Principles of Microeconomics
  • BIOL 1401 Diversity of Life and Laboratory
  • BIOL 1402 General Biology I for Majors and Laboratory
  • BIOL 1402L General Biology I for Majors and Laboratory
  • BIOL 1403 General Biology II for Majors and Laboratory
  • BIOL 3342 Ecology and Lab
  • ENSC 1410 Intro to Environmental Science
  • ENSC 2105 Environmental Science Seminar
  • ENSC 3340 Environmental Impact Assessment
  • ENSC 3410 Research in Soil Conservation
  • ENSC 3420H Human Dominated Ecosystems
  • ENSC 3420L Human Dominated Ecosyst Lab
  • ENSC 4315 Environmental Science Research
  • ENSC 4371 Selected Topics
  • ENSC 4460 Research in Water Quality
  • GEOL 1401 Physical Geology
  • GEOL 3450 Environmental Geology
  • METR 1360 Climatology
  • METR 1430 Meteorology
  • METR 3335 Severe Weather
  • METR 3340 Hydrology
  • METR 3345 Statistical Climatology
  • METR 4315 Air Pollution Meteorology
  • NUTR 2400 Environmental Nutrition
  • NUTR 4460 Community and World Nutrition
  • FADS 2331 Flat Pattern
  • FMGT 2341 Textiles
  • FMGT 3345 Sustainability in Fashion
  • FMGT 4350 Global Fashion Economics
  • INTD 3336 Environ Systems/Sustainability
  • INTD 4380 Historic Preservation
  • INTD 4382 Wellness/Transparency/Intr Dsg
  • INTD 2325 Construction and Details
  • INTD 2350 Interior Materials
  • VISC 3291 Clinical Internship I
  • VISC 3292 Integrated Ocular Science
  • VISC 4212 Public Health and Epidemiology
  • VISC 4223 Ocular Disease
  • VISC 4291 Clinical Internship II
  • VISC 4312 Ophthalmic Lenses and Optical Design
  • VISC 4322 Immunology and Eye Disease
  • VISC 4392 Clinical Internship II


Considering the significance of sustainability to nearly all facets of human social relations, one could be forgiven for arguing that all careers are careers in sustainability. More specifically, certain sectors are experiencing sustained growth in the demand for those familiar with sustainable development practices, including journalism, interior design, investment banking, civil engineering, facilities management, urban planning, government at the local, state, and federal level, agriculture, horticulture, advertising, transportation, and energy. There also are emerging career paths such as CSO (Chief Sustainability Officer) and Environmental Ethicist. The Sustainability Studies concentration prepares students to imagine and achieve the job they want, as well as the flexibility to succeed across a variety of employment sectors.