Undergraduate Programs

Faculty and counselors can help students create a personalized plan for study under the umbrella of environmental studies and sustainability, tailoring majors, minors and concentrations to reflect individual interests and goals. 

Options for a major include Environmental Health Science and Environmental Science & Policy. Environmental Engineering is offered through the School of Engineering. Sample courses include conservation biology, environmental communication, environmental law, and energy policy. 

Internship and co-op experiences are the norm for Clarkson undergraduates: students have at least one, if not several, internships and/or co-ops at top companies across the nation. Community development, environmental health and safety, waste treatment engineering, are just a few examples of internship and co-op fields related to sustainability. 

The Adirondack Park and Beyond

Photo of moose looking at camera.

The Adirondack Semester lets undergraduates from all majors live as resident explorers, entrepreneurs, environmental scientists, poets, and policy advocates of the Adirondack Park, one of the largest protected landscapes in North America and Clarkson's "backyard."

Students who are committed to learn about environmental science, policy, economics and the human history and contemporary issues of the Adirondacks are encouraged to apply. Learn more about the Adirondack Semester.

For those who want to go further afield, we also offer a two-week intensive work/study experience at Devil's Thumb Ranch in Colorado's Rocky Mountains, and study abroad programs around the globe. 


Clarkson University student Mackenzie Peters in The Netherlands

From the Adirondacks to The Netherlands
Mackenzie Peters '23, is an Environmental Engineering Major with a minor in Environmental Science. Mackenzie grew up in the Adirondack Park and always knew she wanted to help the environment and lead a life of sustainability. That led her to Clarkson, and eventually to the Technical University of Delft in the Netherlands. Read her blog post about her time abroad, her experiences at Clarkson, and the job waiting for her after graduation!

Our Major Sustainability Initiatives

Ken Visser and wind turbine

Student-Endorsed Sustainability Projects

Students vote and volunteer to make these projects come to life each year. Some of the projects we've completed include: installation of prototype ducted wind turbine; increased access to and protection of campus natural resources; construction of cold-climate greenhouse for research, classes and club activities; and establishment of bike-friendly infrastructure and bike rental program. 

Solar panels being installed.

Net Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions 

As a signatory of the Second Nature Presidents' Climate Challenge, we are one of only 16 doctoral-granting institutions with a 2025 target date for this aggressive climate goal.

Fiscal Year 21 emissions were 51% less than 2010, with 100% renewable electricity for our Potsdam campus from our own 12-acre Solar PV system and local hydroelectric facilities.

A chart showing the UN goals.

UN Sustainable Development Goals

Take a deeper dive into the United Nations' goals here.

At Clarkson, our work-in-progress is moving to align courses, research and operations with their relevant Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) so we can all show how we integrate sustainability in all we do. 

Get Involved!

There are so many ways to get involved in sustainability efforts on campus. Here are just a few:

Wide angle shot of Clarkson University garden in summer.

Join the Garden Club to grow fresh organic vegetables for our campus community. 

Collect and feed food waste to the campus anaerobic digester.

Walk, hike, and bike our wooded trail system or paddle the Raquette River with our Outing Club.

Analyze data from the campus solar and wind power systems.

Design and test a zero-emission snowmobile with a SPEED team.

Join Engineers for International Sustainability to design low-cost solutions for clean water or energy.


Sustainability in Action

Student Research on the River
Students examine water from the St. Lawrence River.

Find out more about our summer program for undergraduates, focusing on aquatic environmental research in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River watershed.

Saving Winter with Green Ice
Clarkson University's Erik Backus behind the scenes at Cheel Arena.

Read how Clarkson's famous hockey program is part of our sustainability efforts, too, now that Cheel Arena ice stays chilly in a more green way.