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Urban Ecology Course

Urban Ecology Bulletin

What is Urban Ecology?
Urban Ecology is the study of how people in suburbs and cities interact with their environment. Because these interactions take many different forms, the discipline blends content from a variety of traditionally distinct disciplines such as economics, psychology, biology, sociology, geography, and public policy. Urban Ecologists ask a variety of questions, such as:

  • What causes urban sprawl and how can we encourage a more sustainable form of development?
  • How can we reconfigure transportation systems to decrease commuter stress and improve mental health?
  • Why do European and U.S. cities look and function differently?
  • Can we build residential developments to accommodate people and native wildlife?

Where will you make a difference?
To graduate with a certificate in Urban Ecology, you must complete an internship at an organization with a mission related to Urban Ecology. These organizations abound in the cosmopolitan and growing city of Atlanta. You can shop for your internship during the Urban Ecology class, when we study key concepts at field sites and hear lectures from representatives of many regional organizations. Click on the map preview below to view the full map showing where students have served as interns, sources for past guest lectures, and destinations for field trips. Internships help students gain real world experience and can lead to full-time, permanent job offers.

Urban Ecology Map Link

Do you have to be a scientist?
The natural and social sciences have significant roles in Urban Ecology, but they complement the roles of relevant non-scientific disciplines like public policy and urban planning. For this reason, students majoring in both the humanities and the sciences succeed in and enrich the Urban Ecology Program. You can use your certificate as a scientific or non-scientific credential…your choice!

Is Urban Ecology for you?
If you are interested in understanding and improving your environment and advertising your knowledge with a certificate at graduation, then Urban Ecology is for you. Oglethorpe University’s Urban Ecology Program is the only undergraduate certificate program of its type in the U.S. This means that your certificate will distinguish you from your peers and give you access to a variety of interesting and rewarding careers. Past certificate earners have entered respected graduate programs and found rewarding jobs in environmental studies, urban planning, public policy, environmental law, non-profit administration, wildlife management, and public health.

What can you do with an Urban Ecology certificate?
You could use your certificate to make your neighborhood a healthier and more rewarding place to live. You could use it as a credential when applying for a job or acceptance to graduate school. In fact, several students have used their certificate to get permanent full-time job offers. In most cases, these jobs directly resulted from internships related to the certificate or networking en route to the certificate.

How do you join the program?
There is no application process, but you should discuss your intent to join the program with the Program Director Dr. Roarke Donnelly at 404-364-8401 or rdonnelly@oglethorpe.edu.

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