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Sustainable Development


Holistic Solutions for Complex Challenges

Sustainable Development majors build a foundational understanding of how the spheres of sustainability—environment, economics, and society—impact each other. Studying the breadth of these subjects allows students to develop a holistic understanding of key issues facing humanity and the environment. This understanding drives efforts to meet current sustainability needs with solutions that don’t sacrifice the future.

Courses in environmental science, sociology, public health, and economics form a foundation for advanced Sustainable Development classes. To build your experience, faculty will encourage you to obtain practical experience by working on sustainability projects on campus, in the local community, and internationally.

Get on track for these careers

  • Environmental Engineer
  • Geoscientist
  • Sustainability Director
  • Climate Change Analyst
  • Energy Consultant
  • Risk Management Specialist
  • Corporate Sustainability Strategist
  • Supervisor of Production and Operating Workers
  • Chemist
  • Aquatic Biologist
Students standing on a steep road in Ecuador
Study Abroad in Ecuador

This study abroad program in Ecuador provides a full-immersion experience into Latin American culture, the Spanish language, and the beautiful country of Ecuador while taking classes in a major field of study or in general education. You’ll experience a multi-disciplinary semester with a core of Ecuadorian culture and Spanish language study. Departmental courses and practicum experience in the students’ areas of specialization are provided in Biology, Business, Christian Education, and Exercise Science, as well as general education courses in history, literature, and science.

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Joelle Buller
Class of 2022
"Sustainable Development has grown my passion for the natural world and connected it to addressing complex environmental, social, and economic issues. Taking classes across disciplines helped me develop an interest in corporate sustainability, community development, and environmental health. I’ve also gained hands-on experience through campus sustainability projects, field work, and an internship. The Sustainable Development major has prepared me for entering the growing-career field of sustainability with confidence and a broader view of environmental issues."

Sustainable Development Concentrations

Sustainable Development students grow in their knowledge, skills, and motivation for sustainability by putting principles into practice. After learning core sustainable development principles through courses in environmental law, global health, geospatial analysis, microeconomics, ecology, geology, and cultural anthropology, each student chooses from a wide range of electives to put into practice aspects of sustainability, such as one of the following:

Public & Environmental Health

Investigate environmental aspects that affect human health. Promote healthy communities and foster better relationships between people and the environment. Classes focus on community health, epidemiology, and equity. Studies in Ecuador are available.

Sustainable Agriculture

Students interested in working toward improving the supply of healthy food while also maintaining environmental quality can take courses in agroecology, food systems, soil science, and more. You can even travel to Malawi for your field course.

Water Resources

Study global water issues and resource management. Discover how hydrogeology and environmental chemistry connect to develop sustainable plans for proper water quality and distribution. A water resource field course is offered in Guatemala.

Urban Sustainability

Study what sustainability looks like in an urban context through courses in ethnic and minority issues, community and urban affairs, and health.

Sustainable Development Curriculum & Degree Options

Students interested in course descriptions and academic policies can check out our Undergraduate Catalog.

Liberal Arts Foundational Core

A Taylor liberal arts education will prepare you to live and work in a fast-changing world. It also goes a step further: laying a strong spiritual foundation that cultivates wisdom. You’ll become a well-versed individual, equipped with critical thinking skills, a lifelong love of learning, and an appreciation for God’s creation.

View Foundational Core Curriculum.

Sustainable Development major holding a chicken next to a brick wall

Full Circle Gardens

Solving sustainable food production problems has broad social, economic, and geo-political implications. One of the ways you’ll begin wrestling with these issues is through working with Full Circle Gardens. Located outside Randall Environmental Center, you’ll get hands-on experience in sustainable agriculture and food systems, including a chicken coop, an aquaponics system, and a worm compost table in the greenhouse. Follow our progress on Instagram @Full.Circle.Gardens

Choosing a Sustainable Career

Sustainable Development graduates live out their calling through four main categories of employment: corporate sustainability, environmental education, non-profit work in communities, and government positions to development and implement innovative policies. These fast-growing “green jobs” reflect an increased demand across industry sectors. Our students have a competitive advantage in this sphere through their hands-on skills, their cross-cultural capacity, and their intrinsic motivation based on the Biblical call to love God and love neighbors by caring for the earth.

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female student with orchids in greenhouse