Environmental Studies

Environmental Studies: Major, Minor

Environmental Studies explores contemporary and past environmental issues, including a hands-on examination of their causes, mechanisms and effects. The program investigates local, national and global issues through a multi-disciplinary study of culture, art, economics, history, biology, and the physical sciences.

Courses across 11 departments allow students to discover the links between the scientific, social and cultural elements that contribute to national and global environmental issues. With the help of faculty perspectives and expertise, students come to areas of focus including the natural and human causes and effects of climate change, the influence of urbanization on the environment, the role of policy and economics in solving environmental problems, and the ethical and social justice issues related to the environment. Working directly with faculty and community partners, students go beyond the classroom to address current issues facing the local Worcester community such as sustaining a healthy urban ecosystem and preserving the local watershed. 

Environmental Studies Statement on Environmental Racism and Justice

Read the full statement »

Program Highlights

  • An integrative understanding of the cultural, economic, political, social, and scientific elements of environmental issues
  • Ethical and social justice issues relating to the environment
  • Role of economic and social policy to address our environmental crisis
  • Natural and human causes and effects of climate change
  • Influence of urbanization on the environment 
students pointing at a computer monitor

Conduct research and fieldwork with program faculty whose work spans numerous disciplines.

Semester Away and Study Abroad

Take part in a semester or year abroad experience focused on the environment — on land or at sea.

Internship and Volunteer Opportunities

Numerous hands-on learning opportunities are available at area environmental non-profit agencies.

Environmental Studies News

Thomas Doughton, senior lecturer of interdisciplinary studies, and Sarah Luria, professor of English and director of the Environmental Studies Program, two of the faculty members involved in the creation of the documentary. Photo by Avanell Chang
Holy Cross Faculty Premiere New Documentary “Pakachoag: Where the River Bends”
Worcester Telegram & Gazette
Maggie Hartnett '23 and Professor David Karmon
Student-Generated Urban Studies Minor Debuts at Holy Cross
Maggie Hartnett '23 & faculty advisors team up to create new Urban Studies minor, which will explore themes around how we build our cities, what we do in them and how they shape us
Three students reach into a water tank at the lab.
Marine Biology Research in Maine – Holy Cross Student Summer Series
An experiential learning opportunity in Maine inspires three Holy Cross students