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Environmental Education Center in the Union

Noting growing student interest in sustainability, climate change, and other environmental factors, Rensselaer established Vasudha, a living-learning community focused on “Earth, Energy, and Environment.”

Environmental Education Center in the Union

The Environmental Education Center (EEC) is a center for environmental action and education on the Rensselaer campus. Located in the games room of the Rensselaer Union, the center hosts EcoLogic meetings and the meetings of other environmentally minded clubs. The EEC has a library of environmentally themed books, and a demonstration EcoLounge showcasing several “green” concepts, materials, and technologies.

Sustainability Related Academics

Rensselaer offers several academic programs focused specifically on sustainability and the environment:

Rensselaer provides multiple courses across disciplines that focus on sustainability. Some examples include:

  • Environment and Society

  • Environmental Economics

  • Science of the Environment

  • Materials and Enclosures

  • Environmental Impact Analysis

  • Introduction to Environmental Studies

Other courses include the topic of sustainability; however, it is not the primary focus.

Rensselaer recognizes the importance of interdisciplinary study, which provides knowledge that is essential to addressing issues regarding sustainability.

Other programs, which may indirectly contribute to a student’s knowledge on sustainability, include the Undergraduate Research Program (URP), the Study Abroad Program, and Vasudha.

The Undergraduate Research Program provides undergraduate students with the opportunity to help conduct research, some of which surrounds topics of sustainability, such as fuel cell and lighting research.

The Study Abroad Program provides the opportunity for students to travel abroad, potentially gaining insight on various issues that would affect global sustainability. In 2009, a group of undergraduate students traveled to Pune College in India for the first Indo-US Research Academy, where three students focused on the topic of energy and environment.

Vasudha, a university-supported program, is a first-year living & learning community focused on issues of energy, environment, and biodiversity. The students participating in this program live together on the first floor of Nason residence hall. They take courses together in their first-year, and also engage in learning beyond the classroom through field trips, lectures and campus events.

Material adapted from the 2009 Student Sustainability Task Force (SSTF) “Sustainability at Rensselaer” Report.

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