Faculty Research Symposium
Environmental Studies Minor
“Montevallo’s Ebenezer Swamp Ecological Preserve and wetlands center make this school a good choice for aspiring naturalists.”
-- Mojo guide to schools that “combine great values with good value” (Mother Jones, Sept/Oct 2010).
Environmental Studies is a rapidly growing interdisciplinary program. It originated as a faculty initiative responding to opportunities for teaching and learning offered by an unusual array of campus resources, including Ebenezer Swamp and James Wylie Shepherd Observatory, backed by strong student interest.
The core academic program, a minor with its base in the natural sciences, has expanded to include a number of sustainability initiatives, among them an organic community garden, campus trails, a recycling program, and ValloCycle: The Montevallo Bike Share.
Under the ES umbrella faculty can pursue their own interests in environmental thinking and activism. Some join colleagues in other fields to develop team-taught courses. The introductory ES course is “guest taught” by professors from all four colleges, who present their disciplinary perspectives on a variety of environmental issues. In addition, faculty have many opportunities to work closely with students through shared research, internships, service projects, and independent study projects.
Recent team-taught courses include: “Environmental Aesthetics and Ethics“ (Biology and Philosophy), “Summer Harvest 2011” (Biology and English), “Summer Harvest 2012” (Biology and Social Work), “The Lore of Appalachian Eco-Resistance” (English and Sociology).