At Calvin, we believe that we are called to be stewards of God's creation. Environmental studies students tackle environmental issues from multiple perspectives, from political to biological to geological.


With an environmental studies major, you will take courses in the sciences and the humanities to develop a strong understanding of environmental issues across the globe. After taking foundational courses in biology, economics, geography, political science and environmental studies, you will choose of these concentrations:

  • economics
  • geography
  • political science

Internships and hands-on lab work are an essential part of this major.

Careers in Environmental Studies

  • Lobbyist
  • Aquatic Toxicologist
  • Analytic Chemist
  • National Park Ranger
  • More

See job placement rates for Calvin grads.

Student involvement

Join the Environmental Stewardship Coalition; Work at the Ecosystem Preserve; Assist a professor with environmental research; Participate in campus-wide sustainability programs; Live in the Creation Care Living-Learning Community.

Course Requirements 2013-14

Environmental Studies major

(35 semester hours)


Disciplinary concentrations

(15-19 semester hours)

  • Choose five (5) courses within one discipline.

Economics concentration options

  • ECON-221 Principles of Microeconomics
  • ECON-222 Principles of Macroeconomics
  • ECON-325 Managerial Economics/Intermediate Microeconomics
  • ECON-326 Business Cycles and Forecasting/Intermediate Macroeconomics
  • ECON-330 Urban Growth and Development
  • ECON-339 Government Finance and Public Policy
  • ECON-343 Research Methods
  • BUS-359 Internship in Business

Geography concentration options

Political Science concentration options

  • One from:
  • POLS-202 American State and Local Politics
  • POLS-207 Introduction to International Politics
  • One from:
  • POLS-251 Methods in Political Analysis
  • One from:
  • POLS-308 Principles of American Foreign Policy
  • POLS-380 Internship in State or Local Government

In order to be admitted as a major in the environmental studies program, a student must have completed two courses in the major with a minimum grade average of B- (2.7).

Environmential Studies minor

(19-21 semester hours)

  • ENST-210 Human Modifications of Global Environment
  • ENST-302 Environment and Society
  • ENST-395 Seminar in Environmental Studies
  • GEOG-261 Geographic Information Systems & Cartography
  • Two additional courses approved by the program director.

Request a catalog

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Calvin College Course CatalogCurrent students please download your course catalog for complete degree requirements.


Dollar amounts reflect awards given for the 2014-15 academic year.

Debra Deur Scholarship
  • award amount: $3,800
  • sophomore, junior or senior
  • GPA of 3.0+
  • financial need required
  • apply through the Calvin Portal
Clarence and Irene Menninga Geology Scholarship
  • award amount: $1,800
  • junior or senior
  • GPA 2.5+
  • financial need required
  • apply through the Calvin Portal
Jerrian (M.D.) and Anna (Terpstra) Van Dellen Geology Scholarship
  • award amount: $2,000
  • junior or senior
  • GPA of 3.0+
  • financial aid required; must demonstrate academic potential, leadership ability and Christian character
  • apply through the Calvin Portal
View all scholarship opportunities


Henk Aay

Henk Aay
Professor Emeritus
Department of Geology Geography & Environmental Studies
NH 058
(616) 526-7033

Curtis Blankespoor

Curtis Blankespoor
Professor of Biology
Department of Biology
DH 123
(616) 526-6498

Randall DeJong

Randall DeJong
Assistant Professor
Department of Biology
DH 109
(616) 526-7625

Kathi Groenendyk

Kathi Groenendyk
Professor, chair
Department of Communication Arts & Sciences
DC 250A
(616) 526-6317

David Koetje

David Koetje
Department of Biology
DH 105
(616) 526-7047

Rich Nyhof

Rich Nyhof
Department of Biology
DH 111
(616) 526-6347

James Skillen

James Skillen
Assistant Professor
Department of Geology Geography & Environmental Studies
NH B77
(616) 526-7546

Jason VanHorn

Jason VanHorn
Assistant Professor
Department of Geology Geography & Environmental Studies
NH 075
(616) 526-7623

Amy Wilstermann

Amy Wilstermann
Associate Professor
Department of Biology
DH 129
(616) 526-7620

Talk to us

Ralph Stearley Ralph Stearley
Program Director
NH 071
(616) 526-6370


Connect with your counselor via email, phone, or in person. They'd love to hear from you and answer your questions!

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In the fall and spring our counselors travel throughout the world to meet with students—see if they'll be in your area!

Teach This

Interested in teaching? You can gain certification in Environmental Studies as a:

Calvin's teacher education program also contains education-specific course requirements that you must complete prior to certification. See course requirements for:

Professor Robert Keeley talks about the education program.

Learn More

Explore Calvin's teacher education program.

Contact Deanna van Dijk, Ken Bergwerff, for more information about teacher certification in Earth/space Science .

Contact Ken Bergwerff for more information about teacher certification in Geography

Read the teacher education guidebook for more detailed information about certification.

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