Want to find ways of incorporating sustainability into your time here at UWT?
We have several degree/certificate programs that can help you develop a true appreciation for our urban serving campus and its surrounding community.
With our urban campus as a vibrant platform, students don’t just read about sustainability, they make it happen—researching housing alternatives, testing solar arrays, tracking transportation systems, and tending organic gardens. Beyond the classroom, the UWT Sustainability Committee offers opportunities to help students engage with sustainability ideas and efforts on campus.
You can choose a minor in Corporate Social Responsibility if the business side of sustainability is what you're after, or dive right in with a BA in Sustainable Urban Development where you'll learn the core foundation of economic, social, and environmental issues. If science is your calling and your career goals include tackling environmental issues, we have several options in the School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences (SIAS).
Whatever your goals might be, we can help you become a leader in the fight for a more sustainable world! Explore these degree offerings in more detail below.
Find Majors that will help you find a career in Sustainbility.
In reality, any major can be sustainability oriented. It is the responsibility of the student to pick a major that they are interested in and pick courses within the major to contribute to their Sustainability knowledge.
Specific to Sustainability
These majors are specified so a person can jump into a Sustainability specific career.
BS Environmental Sustainability - prepares students to understand, analyze, and solve environmental and sustainability challenges. Interdisciplinary foundations in environmental sciences, including natural and social sciences, combine with training in communications, writing, law, critical perspectives, and emerging sustainability science. Students can choose one of four options for in-depth study.
Environmental Policy and Law
Business/Nonprofit Environmental Sustainability
BA Sustainable Urban Development - As one of the first such degrees in the nation, students will be prepared to address recent initiatives that have called for a significant “greening” of urban development, both locally and internationally.
Sustainability Related Majors
These majors are not specifically Sustainability oriented but people in these fields can advance sustainable practices and policies. These majors also offer courses specific to sustainability.
BS Civil Engineering - emphasizes the conception, development, design, construction, maintenance, and renewal of systems in a complex urban environment that involve issues in transportation, water resources, the environment, structural engineering, geotechnical engineering, construction engineering, and land development.
BS Environmental Science - provides students with a strong science background with a focus on the environmental issues of the future. Through lecture, lab and field classes, you will get hands-on experience with biology, chemistry, the geosciences, physics and math.
BA Ethnic, Gender and Labor Studies-examines how communities form and are transformed, with a focus on the relationship between social class, race and ethnicity, and gender. This major has a special focus on African-Americans, Latino/as, Native Americans, Asian Americans, the multiracial working class and Women and Gender Studies.
Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences - provides broad exposure to key areas of knowledge within the arts and sciences, while stressing their interconnectedness. This degree is based on core courses in history, environmental science, literature/arts, social science and an introduction to Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences
BA Law and Policy - you will learn to think analytically about both law and public policy. Our coursework links with the challenges facing policy makers and social activists in Tacoma, Washington State, the U.S., and the world.
BA Politics, Philosophy, and Economics - PP&E majors take a shared set of introductory courses, then choose from three specializations: Politics and Philosophy, Economics or International Studies.
BA Social Welfare - The program's mission gives special attention to the poor and underserved populations, and fosters an appreciation for differences based on gender, ethnicity, race, religious creed, sexual orientation, class and physical and developmental disabilities
BS Urban Design - While architecture focuses on the design of individual buildings, urban design operates on a larger scale – envisioning new ways of designing public spaces like parks, streets, groups of buildings, whole neighborhoods, and entire cities. Urban designers work to make these spaces functional, attractive, and sustainable.
Obtaining a Minor in a sustainability field is a great way to include the principles of sustainability into your chosen field. Whether you are a business major or science major, pursing a minor or certificate in these programs can expand your skill set to incite sustainable changes in your field.
Specific to Sustainability
If you are looking to add sustainability skills to your current major, these minors would be beneficial for all majors within the UWT. However, please discuss adding a minor with a academic advisor.
Sustainability- This minor gives you grounding in sustainability practice and theory, and creates a foundational understanding of local and global problems from a social, economic and environmental perspective.
Sustainable Urban Development - Students will learn principles that include the necessity to consider social justice, environmental, end economic outcomes as parts of the sustainability matrix; the tensions, complementarities, and tradeoffs among these dimensions; and the role that urban/suburban growth and form play in furthering this multi-dimensional concept of sustainability.
Corporate Social Responsibility - gives students a firm understanding of why good businesses operate in a way that builds value for all stakeholders, and how to best accomplish this in a strategic way. Students will develop a strong understanding of the evolution of corporate responsibility successes and failures as well as the tactical tools necessary to be successful in any career.
Minors that couple appropriately with Sustainability Majors
The minors listed below, would complement a Sustainability Major and focus your degree to a specific career or field. Please discuss if these minors are right for you with a academic advisor.
American Indian Studies - develop an increased awareness of their own culture and the cultures of Indigenous peoples, will learn to identify and articulate critical questions and approaches that respect and utilize Indigenous paradigms and the common theoretical assumptions of Indigenous cultures
Education and Community Engagement - Candidates for the minor examine the role of multiple forms of education, the impact of education on a range of societal inequalities, and the sociopolitical forces of race, class, gender, sexuality, culture, language, and immigration within a human rights framework.
Environmental Studies - This minor will also be helpful for Urban Studies majors interested in restoration projects in urban areas or how populations affect the environment, Business majors needing a background in the growing fields of "green" marketing and manufacturing or environmental management, Nursing majors interested in environmental health, Students going into teaching programs, Concerned citizens interested in learning more about environmental issues.
Global Engagement - This minor connects students to the places and communities they are studying through community-engaged seminars. The Minor in Global Engagement is open to all UW Tacoma students.
Health and Society - The Health and Society minor offers students the opportunity to increase their understanding of, and advocacy for, health within a broad social context. The courses enable students to make use of valid sources of information, to understand health policy, and to examine individual, community, environmental, and global health issues.
Human Rights - Students benefit from being able to choose from many courses on different campuses, as well as meeting and collaborating with students from other programs
Innovation and Design - equips students with ways of thinking, creating, and intervening in problems in the world in a way that invites collaboration and ethically engages communities.
Law and Policy - examines state-society relations and their effects on public policy and competent government. It will help you understand the law and legal institutions, and the relationship between legal thinking, social institutions, and public policy analysis.
Nonprofit Studies (Minor or Certificate) - students who are interested in pursuing careers in nonprofit organizations. Students learn a variety of business and fundraising skills and do internships at various community sites.
Restoration Ecology (Minor or Certificate) - provides training from theory to practice, giving you the skills necessary to participate as an effective team member and leader on challenging restoration projects.