Environmental Justice and Social Change
Make a difference in your community
and the world
100% Online: Concentration in Environmental Justice and Social Change
- Improve your job readiness by learning additional skills necessary in today’s workplace, while working towards your undergraduate degree.
- Concentrations appear on your transcript and diploma so future employers know what skills you’ve acquired.
To obtain this concentration, complete any three of the following courses:
ENCJ 305 Natural Resource Law and Policy
This survey course addresses not only the creation and management of our natural and wildlife resources on federal public lands, with a focus on the National Parks, National Forests, and the National Resource Lands (Bureau of Land Management (BLM) regulated lands), but also including the National Wildlife Refuge System and the National Wilderness Preservation System. Students will learn how interest groups, citizens, and the courts influence the management of natural resources on these lands. After taking the class, students should be familiar with the major public land legislation such as the National Forest and National Park “Organic Acts” and the Wilderness Act; as well as laws that affect our public lands, but apply more broadly, including the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act. Through class work and their papers, students will also be familiar with different perspectives on some of the most important current issues facing our public lands.
ENVJ 201 Understanding Diversity and the Environment
In this course, students develop a critical vocabulary around issues of diversity, sustainability, and the environment. Students learn about the ways people from different backgrounds, whether racial, age, gender, socioeconomic, are treated and affected differently by environmental problems. Finally, students develop ideas about how to make real-world environmental changes that include every stakeholder’s voice, especially voices from communities that have otherwise been subordinated, silenced, and marginalized.
ENVJ 203 History of Creating Environmental Social Change
Although environmental issues are often presented ahistorically, every issue is historically rooted to economic, political, social, and cultural reasons. This course explores the role that historically-rooted lines of power such as race, gender, and class produce patterns of local and global environmental resource use and abuse. Students learn these histories by studying key environmental figures who have fought for environmental justice and social change. Finally, students recognize that history provides a meaningful and important framework for understanding the present and can be used to provide solutions to some of the most pressing environmental justice issues.
ENVJ 301 Energy Justice: Local to Global Perspectives
As global patterns of energy use often remain hidden or go undiscussed, it is important to investigate the social and environmental justice implications. In this class, students examine case studies to explore real-world controversies over energy extraction and use. Some questions this course considers are who benefits most from current energy systems? Who pays for it? How does climate change policies affect global energy patterns and use? How does political and economic power drive the conversation and energy policies around the world? In addition to exploring the existing problems, students will consider possibilities for creating a more just and sustainable energy systems.
ENVJ 303 American Government: Foundations in Environmental Law
Passing legislation and enforcing the law are some of the most powerful tools to enact environmental justice and social change. This class provides an overview of the law and legal system, with an emphasis on environmental cases. After covering the basics of American government and the legal system, students focus their learning on the design, implementation, and enforcement of major environmental statutes.