Sustainability Literacy Program

Earn a special sustainability designation with any Tompkins Cortland degree.


Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Making decisions that preserve the values of environmental, economic, and social responsibility.

Sustainability Efforts on Campus

Find out what faculty, staff, and students are doing on campus

Students in the Baker Commons

An Emerging Field

The very nature of environmental issues demands an interdisciplinary approach when seeking sustainable solutions. The College’s Sustainability Literacy program is designed to expose students to the broad topic of sustainability through an interdisciplinary exploration of interrelated subjects. The program will provide evidence that the student has completed a coherent course of study in the emerging field of sustainability.

This program has been designed to complement associate degree programs by allowing a student to earn credit toward his/her degree while at the same time pursuing the study in sustainability. Students may use any of their required classes or unrestricted electives to meet the program’s requirements.

Students outside on campus

Course Requirements

To fulfill the program requirements, students must choose one course from each of the following categories:

  • Natural Sciences (3-4 credits)
    Examples: BIOL 102, BIOL 105, ENVS 101
  • Social Sciences (3 credits)
    Examples: ANTH 202, any ECON, SOCI 101
  • Humanities (3 credits)
    Examples: ENVS 105, any ENGL with a sustainability theme
  • Capstone Course ENVS 295 Global Seminar (3 credits)
    Approved Elective ( 3-4 credits)

Students in many programs will be able to complete the program with no additional coursework, providing they work closely with their advisors and choose electives from the requirements and approved electives (pdf).

For more information contact Professor Kelly Wessell.