Welcome to Swarthmore College’s Environmental Studies (ENVS) program.
Begun in 1992 as a concentration (minor), ENVS expanded to a Tri-College minor in 2012, then added a major in 2016 and an honors major in 2018.
We are an inherently interdisciplinary community that draws on expertise in the humanities, natural sciences and engineering, and the social sciences to tackle environmental issues of great complexity and sociopolitical importance. Our mission is to enable students to be responsible custodians of a rapidly changing and interconnected world.
We prepare students with the tools and action-based strategies to embrace challenges, build coalitions, and develop personal agency around environmental issues. Central to this mission is an emphasis on equity, collaboration and reciprocity in all environmental work. The program offers minors, majors, honors majors, research projects, and affiliated community-based learning projects in the broad field of Environmental Studies.
Through completion of the ENVS program, students will:
- Develop a foundational literacy in the physical, economic, socio-political, and historical bases of environmental issues.
- Explore the human dimensions of environmental issues and acknowledge their own position in relation to those issues.
- Engage multiple perspectives, including Indigenous knowledge and perspectives, and/or community-based perspectives, to promote justice and foster reciprocal relationships between human societies and the environments on which they depend.
- Foster respectful relationships with the natural world, recognizing the interdependence that should guide our research, activism, and policy-making
- Respond to the realities and consequences of climate change by helping build coalitions to mitigate harm and increase joyful resilience.