Education and Research
St. Lawrence University has one of the richest and most varied environmental curricula of comparable colleges across the U. S. Its well regarded Environmental Studies Program includes combined majors with eleven other departments. St. Lawrence has a new Conservation Biology major, a minor in Outdoor Studies, and a nationally acclaimed Adirondack Semester based in a remote wilderness camp in the Adirondack mountains. Many St. Lawrence faculty from across disciplines and departments have research interests related to environmental issues, and there are many options for students to work with faculty on independent research projects. Courses in environmental studies, biology, geology, economics, sociology, government, philosophy and English, among others, engage students on issues such as climate change, sustainability and consumption, energy, carbon cycling, environmental writing, ethics, and policy. The environmental studies department operates a hundred acre Ecological Sustainability Landscape that provides students the opportunity for easily accessible field research. There are abundant opportunities for student research and field study in our various abroad semesters, short term travel components in existing courses, and in the myriad possibilities in the Adirondacks and St. Lawrence River valley closer to home.
Students at St Lawrence are very active in extra-curricular activities relating to the environment and to climate, food and energy in particular. The student Environmental Action Organization has focused on climate (and related energy and food) issues in recent years. Students involved in EAO have been active in national met-works such as Climate Action, Step-It-Up and Powershift2009. Almost fifty students attended PowerShift 2009 activities in Washington D.C. in March and returned to give presentations in classes and to the university community through a public forum and NCPR interviews. The theme cottages on campus include the long-standing Outdoor Alternatives Club and the Greenhouse. A new theme cottage on local food will start in fall 2009. Students' interest in reducing their carbon footprint through reducing transportation miles of their food has led to interest in gardening on-campus, participation in local CSAs near campus, and work with local organizations (church U-Share program) to enhance local food security with community gardens which will donate produce to local food pantries. New groups are forming to continue these student initiatives, for example Lettuce Turnip the Beet which is organizing a local food dinner in collaboration with Dining Services.