Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics

Environmental Science (M.S.)

Why Earn a Master's Degree in Environmental Science?

From the effects of global warming to preserving the health of the Chesapeake Bay, environmental issues are making headlines and capturing the attention of students across disciplines. The graduate program in environmental science is an interdisciplinary program with core courses taught by biologists, geologists and chemists. The program focuses on the most pressing environmental issues and problems currently faced by metropolitan areas.

The program is targeted to individuals currently working in related fields who are looking to enter the environmental work force, and educators seeking to expand their knowledge of environmental sciences in metropolitan areas so they can teach the specialty. Evening courses are ideal for working professionals.

Select Your Concentration

Four areas of concentration were developed based on workforce needs identified by regional environmental professionals. You can choose from the following:

Choose the Thesis or Non-Thesis Option

The thesis track is a more traditional master’s program. Students in this track select a faculty adviser and develop an original research project, with the goal of producing one or more peer-reviewed publications. If you are interested in the thesis track, please contact one of our faculty to discuss available projects prior to applying to the program.

The non-thesis track is an attractive option if you are a working professional looking to further your career. Evening classes are offered, so you can attend while continuing to work. Non-thesis students complete their studies with a semester-long Research Practicum course. Developing and writing a research practicum paper involves synthesis of current thought from a variety of disciplines on an important environmental issue or problem. All students completing a non-thesis master’s degree demonstrate that they are able to develop and defend such a document.

Internships and Research Opportunities

Through collaborations with local and regional environmental agencies such as the U.S. Geological Survey and a number of international institutions, you’ll gain access to a range of internship and thesis research opportunities. National Science Foundation-funded projects and regional laboratories provide unique learning experiences for both thesis and non-thesis students. Many courses are taught by experts from the private sector and government who provide first-hand counsel and guidance.

Find Work in Your Field

Our graduates are employed by environmental firms and government agencies across the region. Practitioners in the field and those looking for career changes gain opportunities with the Maryland Department of the Environment, Department of Natural Resources, and local and national environmental companies.


David Ownby
Program Director



Application Deadlines:

October 1 — spring admission

March 1— fall admission.





Related links

For Current Students

• Graduate Handbook (PDF)





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