News & Information

Environmental Studies given OK to issue bachelor's degrees


Sacramento State’s Department of Environmental Studies has received the go-ahead to award Bachelor of Science degrees.

"In the larger scheme, this represents the coming of age of the discipline,” Department Chair Dudley Burton says. “We’ve been working in this direction for a long time."

Most important is the benefit to students in the program, who now are on more equal footing to compete for technical jobs with graduates from disciplines such as Biology and Chemistry who entered the workforce with B.S. degrees.

“Some agencies required a B.S. to hire anybody in these kind of jobs,” Burton says. “The contradiction was the students (in Environmental Studies) were prepared for these jobs but couldn’t compete because they didn’t have the appropriate degree designation.”

The department, which previously had awarded only Bachelor of Arts degrees, was cleared to issue B.S. degrees Friday, March 25, with the approval date retroactive to Fall 2010.

Burton says the department being OK’d for issuing B.S. degrees illustrates a shift in thinking in regards to the course of study and embodies the fact that Environmental Studies is “a legitimate field of scientific inquiry.”

For more on Sacramento’s State’s Environmental Studies program, visit For media assistance, contact Public Affairs at (916) 278-6156.