Environmental Science Program 

Concerns about human impacts on and interactions with the environment have led to the development of a number of careers involved with environmental protection, law, health, economics, and compliance. If you are interested in an environmental career, then the Environmental Science Program at Southeast Missouri State University invites you to learn more about the diverse opportunities in this growing field. The program at Southeast is an interdisciplinary, science-intensive program, requiring comprehensive study in the natural sciences and mathematics. Environmental Science faculty are members of the science departments and are also in variety of other academic departments across the university. This will allow you to study and solve environmental problems from a multi-disciplinary perspective, and will give you the diverse skills that will allow you to have a satisfying career in environmental science. If you are interested in helping to find solutions to environmental problems today and in the future, then this is the program for you.

Career Opportunities

Graduates in Environmental Science can obtain employment in a variety of entry-level positions in environmental protection and management. The environmental field continues to expand and change, and the Environmental Science Program provides students with the basis to meet the demands of a dynamic, changing job market. Currently many environmental jobs are with state and federal government agencies and private consulting firms that specialize in environmental fields. Also, a diversity of businesses hire environmental professionals. Among the hundreds of examples of environmental careers are environmental toxicology, environmental chemistry, occupational/environmental health specialties, environmental microbiology, in addition to numerous positions dealing with compliance with and the establishment of environmental regulations. For those wishing to pursue an advanced degree, the program at Southeast also provides excellent preparation for admission to graduate programs. Graduates of the program may also choose to pursue professional study in law, business, medicine, or the allied health professions.

Educational Preparation

The Environmental Science Program at Southeast Missouri State University is a science intensive program that consists of Core Courses required of every Environmental Science major, and an option area in either biology, business, chemistry, environmental health, geosciences, information systems, or soil science. The curriculum is designed to provide environmental science majors with fundamental knowledge of the scientific, social, ethical, legal, economic, and medical aspects of environmental issues. The core of courses includes 79 credit hours covering the following areas: 

Biology (12)
Chemistry (16) 
Computer Science (3) 
Environmental Science (11)
Geosciences (13) 
Mathematics (8) 
Physics (10) 
Multi-disciplinary courses (6). 

Students then select an area of emphasis as follows:

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Biology Emphasis): This area of emphasis requires 16 additional credit hours in biology, including courses in research methods, heredity, plant or animal biology, an internship or research experience, and upper-level elective courses.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Business Emphasis): This area of emphasis requires 15 additional credit hours in accounting, management, marketing, and macroeconomics.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Chemistry Emphasis): Students in this area of emphasis take 15 additional credit hours in quantitative analysis, chemical literature, physical chemistry, and 5 credit hours of upper-level chemistry electives.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Environmental Health Emphasis): Students in this area of emphasis take 14-15 additional credit hours in occupational health, industrial hygiene, toxicology, epidemiology, environmental health, environmental law and health-related electives.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Geosciences Emphasis): This area of emphasis requires 15 additional credit hours, including field methods, geomorphology, and 10 credit hours of upper-level electives in geosciences.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Information Systems Emphasis): This area of emphasis requires 12-15 additional credit hours, including courses in visual basic, C, Unix, and computer science and information systems.

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (Soil Science Emphasis): This area of emphasis requires 15 additional credit hours, including, soil fertility, soil classification, geomorphology and 6 credit hours of electives.

General Courses of Study

Students in environmental science begin their study with courses in the natural sciences. In addition, all students are required to take two seminars in environmental science. These seminars assist the students in integrating the science courses with application toward environmental issues. Students are assigned a faculty advisor in their area of emphasis; this advisor assists students in planning a course of study within the area of emphasis that meets their needs. In addition to the requirements of the degree program in environmental science, all students at Southeast must complete the required number of credits in each component of the University Studies program.

Facilities and Amenities

The diverse academic departments that comprise the environmental science program at Southeast can offer a variety of state-of-the-art modern facilities for students in the program. The program is housed in Rhodes Hall of Science on the north end of the campus, with teaching and research facilities in both Rhodes Hall and the adjacent Magill Hall of Science and Johnson Hall. The Biology, Chemistry, and Geoscience departments offer laboratories with a complete range of basic equipment to undertake undergraduate research. Students may take advantage of a variety of potential research experiences in environmentally-related areas in cooperation with faculty members and field supervisors. A geographic information system (GIS) facility is available in the Geosciences Department, which allows students to study questions at the landscape scale. Modern greenhouse facilities are available in cooperation with the Agriculture Department. 

Computer facilities on the Southeast campus are readily available, with computer labs located in all science departments and at key locations across campus. The Donald L. Harrison College of Business is housed in Robert A. Dempster Hall, a state-of-the-art University facility adjacent to Rhodes Hall of Science. Robert A. Dempster Hall provides student and faculty access to all of the University's computer resources, with more than 400 fiber optic networked computers, as well as Internet access. 

Outdoor teaching and research opportunities are available in nearby state parks and conservation areas. Within 10 minutes of the University, the I. R. Kelso Wildlife Sanctuary offers 150 acres of forest and field, and is managed by a departmental committee of the biology department. The University is also affiliated with the Reis Biological Station in the Ozarks, and the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, where students may take summer courses.

Applicant Information

For information on programs and areas of study at Southeast Missouri State University, visit Southeast's home page.

For additional information regarding programs and requirements in environmental science, contact:

Environmental Science Program 
Mail Stop 6250 
Southeast Missouri State University 
One University Plaza 
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701-4799 
(573) 651-5990


For information about admission to the University, contact:

Admissions Office 
Mail Stop 3550 
Southeast Missouri State University 
One University Plaza 
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701-4799 
(573) 651-2590 


For more information about the program contact srovermann@semo.edu.

Go to Environmental Science Program Homepage

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Last revision: January 24, 2010

Copyright 2010, Southeast Missouri State University