Beginning in fall 2014, the Environmental Studies Program and InCEES launched a formal partnership to further integrate environmental research and the classroom experience. The programs are coordinating on coursework, student experiences and research. To foster collaborations the programs hold monthly happy hours for interested members of the Washington University community.
The goal of the partnership is to leverage the assets of both programs to further develop the curriculum by attracting new instructors, adding new courses, and providing more experiential opportunities for students. The infrastructure of InCEES will also be used to advance research priorities of the Environmental Studies program.
“There is a natural fit between the Environmental Studies program and InCEES. The interdisciplinary breadth of the InCEES funding program is matched by the curricular diversity of the Environmental Studies program and aligning the two programs will help us meet student needs to better prepare them for graduate studies and careers in energy, the environment and sustainability,” said David Fike, I-CARES Associate Professor in Earth and Planetary Sciences, Arts & Sciences, Director of the Environmental Studies Program in Arts & Sciences, and Associate Director of I-CARES.
The partnership has already helped attract new instructors to the program, was instrumental in launching an interdisciplinary climate change course, and formalizing opportunities for students to attend the annual international climate talks. Regular networking sessions have also served to catalyze new research collaborations, with new teams actively pursuing seed research funding from InCEES and are federal funding agencies.