Today’s environmental concerns have truly become interdisciplinary in scope. Population pressures, traffic congestion, aquifer contamination, and soil erosion are just some of the common challenges facing societies around the world. In response, natural scientists have been joined by social scientists, politicians, business leaders and humanitarians in the quest to find solutions as well as educate the community. Environmental awareness plays a significant role in measuring cultural and environmental impact, crafting environmental policy, certain aspects of health care administration, environmental disaster response and emergency management, and natural resource conservation and protection. UH West O‘ahu’s Environmental Studies Certificate increases the understanding of theoretical and practical aspects of environmental issues. Although it is designed to stand alone, the Certificate is a good supplement for students who are applying for jobs or graduate schools in a host of areas, such as business, public administration, humanities and political science where environmental understanding and awareness are needed.
Careers & Earning Potential
This Certificate provides students with a strong foundation to work in a variety of careers, communities and cultures. Students will possess the knowledge and skills that are valued particularly in industries that have “green” or “sustainable-growth” careers. These jobs can be found in federal agencies, state and county government, educational institutions, and private and non-profit organizations. Students who earn the Certificate—along with a relevant bachelor’s degree—may choose to pursue graduate studies or enter directly into the workforce. With such a wide range of career opportunities, a student’s earning potential is also greatly diverse.
ANTH 415: Human Ecological Adaptation This course investigates the relationship of humans and the natural environment. Emphasis is placed on an understanding of human ecological adaptation that is both evolutionary and holistic. It will investigate human variation in response to conditions of heat, cold, altitude, diet and disease.
ECON 358: Environmental Economics Economic analysis of environmental issues is addressed such as: How much pollution is too much? Can government solve the pollution problem? Can incentives be used to affect the amount of pollution?
PHIL 482: Environmental Ethics This course will examine the history of philosophical and ethical systems and their implications for human interactions within the Earth’s environment. This course will involve readings and discussions of selections from historically important works in the field in the context of current controversies involving environmental ethics.
POLS 326: Environmental Politics This course looks at the current environmental crisis from the perspective of the two revolutions in humanity’s relationship with the natural world: the development of agriculture 10,000 years ago, and the development of industrial-urban society beginning 400 years ago. This provides a context for evaluating the environmental politics of the United States, other industrial nations, and multinational corporations. The course concludes with a focus on Hawai‘i and a consideration of alternative approaches.
POLS 335: Politics of Food Students will learn about the processes of food production and how government and corporate involvement have changed the way society eats. This class should serve as a platform to question our assumptions about political issues surrounding food production and consumption, the links between agribusiness and the food we put on our respective tables, as well as a new way of understanding food issues through a political perspective.
UH West O’ahu Environmental Studies students are encouraged to pursue internships that allow them to make connections between the issues they face in their daily lives and their university education. Students have successfully completed internships at:
• Hawai‘i State Office of Conservation and Coastal Lands
• Hoa ‘Aina O Makaha
• Kokua Kalihi Valley
• Malama na Honu
• National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Dr. Joseph Bariyanga
Dr. Evelyn Cox
Dr. Monique Mironesco