At its most fundamental level, the study of life is the study of chemical processes. A major in biochemistry and molecular biology trains you in the experimental techniques used to probe the structures and functions of biologically important molecules. The strong laboratory and research focus of this major prepares you for graduate study or to enter careers in high-growth areas such as biotechnology and health care research.
In urban areas and remote wildernesses, the health of wild animal populations is enormously affected by human activities. Majors in wildlife, fish and conservation biology study the relationships between human needs—including recreation, resource use and hunting—and wildlife needs for shelter and habitat preservation. The program's focus on real-world activities and hands-on training makes it excellent preparation for students interested in entering professional careers in wildlife and conservation biology.
Students in the Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems major focus on the social, economic and environmental aspects of agriculture and develop a thorough understanding of our food cycle from farm to table and beyond. Subjects from eight academic departments will give you a broad understanding of the many aspects of modern agriculture and food systems, and combine with real-world experiences to develop the skills needed to be a successful agriculturalist, entrepreneur and researcher.
Plants are the foundation of agricultural systems and will be increasingly utilized as renewable energy resources. A major in plant sciences will provide you a scientific understanding of how plants grow and develop in managed ecosystems and how plant products are utilized for food, fiber, fuel and environmental enhancement. Advances in science and technology are providing new options for using plants to support a growing global population, while minimizing adverse impacts on our natural resources.
For much of human history, people's primary concern with food was making sure they were able to get enough to eat. For much of the modern world, our food concerns are very different: obesity, food safety, vitamin and mineral intake and making quality diets part of our busy lives. Nutrition majors examine these issues, as well as concerns about food availability and safety in less industrialized parts of the world. Clinical nutrition majors specialize in designing diets to meet the needs of patients with specific medical conditions.
Our oceans account for more than 96 percent of the world's water, and few of the world's coastlines are beyond the influence of human pressures. The interdisciplinary Marine and Coastal Science major highlights the terrestrial-marine interface, coastal issues and human impacts on the marine environment.
Managerial Economics goes beyond the limits of traditional economics and business majors, blending a thorough grounding in economic theory with business knowledge and applications. The program provides in-depth exposure to economics and quantitative methods, problem-solving strategies, critical thinking and effective communication skills. Options for specialization include: business economics, international business economics, environmental and resource economics, and agribusiness economics.
Global Disease Biology allows students to study disease and its relationship to the health of people, animals, plants and the environment in a global context. The program uses an interdisciplinary approach to advance understanding of diseases, societal and personal impacts, and the science behind discoveries, causes, evolution, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of diseases. Students interested in the health sciences will integrate concepts from multiple disciplines to learn how to solve global disease and health challenges using innovative approaches.
Do you want to understand the functioning of our natural resources? Do you want to influence how air, water and land are used and protected? Students in the Environmental Science & Management (ESM) major will learn to solve environmental problems from an interdisciplinary perspective, linking the natural and social sciences. By studying the physical, biological and social components of environmental problems, students will understand the scientific basis for environmental decisions and the economic implications involved in management of the environment.
Horticulture majors study the ways that plants improve our everyday lives. Plants play many roles in human environments. In addition to beautifying indoor and outdoor areas, they control erosion, reduce energy and water consumption, and revegetate and restore destroyed landscapes.