Claremont McKenna College's commitment to sustainability also extends into its curriculum. The Environment, Economics and Politics majors, Environmental Science majors and other disciplines, as well as hands-on internships and research at The Roberts Environmental Center prepare our students with the intellectual grounding and real world experience necessary to tackle the vast issues surrounding sustainability. CMC continues to expand opportunities for our students.
CMC offers the Environment, Economics and Politics major and the Environmental Science major. Partnering with the Roberts Environmental Center, the EEP major allows students the opportunity to combine their interests in economics and politics with a background in ecological analysis and environmental management.
The Environmental Science major studies the natural environment and is geared toward students interested in career opportunities with government agencies, environmental monitoring agencies, and wildlife conservation groups.
The Joint Sciences offer a variety of courses including:
- Tropical Ecology (tropical biodiversity with an emphasis on rainforests and conservation issues)
- Discovery, Innovation and Risk: Energy (issues related to the origins, production, and use of energy by natural systems and people)
- Land, Air and Ocean Science (Environmental science with a focus on air and water pollution)
- Environmental Chemistry (Applies the fundamental ideas of chemistry to environmental concepts)
- Energy and the Environment (examination of options available for meeting projected U.S. and global energy requirements)
Through the Claremont Consortium, additional courses are available including: Urban Ecology, Environmental Justice, Ecological Landscaping, and Environment and Society.
Burger Reserve Field Study
CMC owns a conservation easement known as The Burger Reserve in California's Eastern Sierra Nevada near Yosemite National Park. The College manages the Mono Basin Field Station there and uses it as a base for environmental research throughout the Eastern Sierra. Students and faculty help maintain the ecological integrity of the reserve and use it for scientific data collection.
Recent research has included evaluating the reseeding effects of areas ravaged by forest fire in the Eastern Sierra. This research was conducted as part of a grant from the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.
Students at the Burger Reserve also volunteered with the Mono Lake Committee, a non-profit citizens' group dedicated to preserving and restoring the Mono Lake ecosystem.
Woolong Reserve Internships
The Roberts Environmental Center and The Kravis Leadership Institute united with the Woolong Nature Reserve in Sichuan Province, China to provide summer internship programs at the Reserve. Woolong Reserve is home to the world's largest captive Giant Panda population.
Students monitor the panda habitat, design and implement community development projects, and document natural and cultural resources. The interns build on work from their entrepreneurship practicum at CMC to bring forward ideas supporting sustainable development at Woolong.
Marc Brody '83 serves as president of the U.S. China Environmental Fund and directs the internship program. Throughout the course, students have teamed up to generate ideas and proposals to support Brody's work at Woolong. The internship features a collaborative approach coordinating multi-disciplinary teams of architects and environmental professions to transfer and adapt the best resource management practices. Specific projects follow three tracks - Panda Habitat, Community Development, and Ecotourism.