ES Goals and Objectives

Environmental Studies as an academic field is the product of efforts to understand and respond to the variety of changes humans have wrought in our world. Students in Environmental Studies are motivated by concern for welfare of the many human and non-human communities that shape this planet. The Environmental Studies Program actively cultivates in our students both engagement with and informed reflection about those communities.  To this end, the curriculum includes an interdisciplinary core that encourages students to explore the social, aesthetic, ethical, scientific, and technical aspects of environmental questions; concentrations that allow students to approach these questions with more focused knowledge and methodological tools; and a community-engaged research course.


To consider how the natural and built environments shape and are shaped by multiple socio-cultural and political factors.

To think across and beyond existing disciplinary boundaries, mindful of the diverse forms of knowledge and experience that arise from human interactions with the world around them.

To live responsibly and appreciate the environmental and cultural histories of the places they inhabit.

To cultivate compassion, curiosity, collaboration, and hope.

To nurture knowledge, respect, and love for the natural and human communities of central Maine, the place where they spend four formative years of their lives.

To develop skills of analysis and communication, bearing in mind disciplinary traditions and diverse publics.

Particular objectives 

Our graduates should be able to

  • recognize the interconnectedness of multiple factors in environmental challenges
  • engage constructively with diverse forms of knowledge and experience
  • identify the multiple scales, actors, and stakes of an issue
  • recognize and apply methodological approaches of the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities
  • identify assumptions inherent in arguments and perspectives
  • evaluate and interpret various forms of evidence, including text, data, and other media about the environment
  • work productively with those within and beyond the academy on interdisciplinary collaborative projects
  • communicate clearly and competently matters of environmental concern and understanding to a variety of audiences in appropriate forms
  • develop and appreciate the environmental and cultural history of Lewiston-Auburn (and any other place they inhabit)