Clarkson University is committed to "sustainability in all we do." We value our natural environment. If you value it too -- and want to be involved in its protection -- we offer incredible opportunities to learn and develop your capacity to work toward a sustainable future for us all.
Through our Institute for a Sustainable Environment (ISE), faculty experts in relevant disciplines -- from biology and business to philosophy and political science -- help students meet the environmental and sustainability challenges of a swiftly changing world. Clarkson has a major climate action goal: to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2025. Students are at the heart of our initiatives, learning and acting through classes, clubs and volunteer efforts.
We offer sustainability-related majors, minors and research opportunities that take students out of the classroom and into the field. And campus clubs bring together students who share a passion for our planet.
Unique course options, flexible and personalized curricula, and critical hands-on experiences in a technology-rich environment combine to set our graduates apart in their chosen fields.
Our Major Sustainability Initiatives
Student-Endorsed Sustainability Projects
Students vote and volunteer to make these projects come to life each year. Some of the projects we've completed include: installation of prototype ducted wind turbine; increased access to and protection of campus natural resources; construction of cold-climate greenhouse for research, classes and club activities; and establishment of bike-friendly infrastructure and bike rental program.
UN Sustainable Development Goals
Take a deeper dive into the United Nations' goals here.
At Clarkson, our work-in-progress is moving to align courses, research and operations with their relevant Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) so we can all show how we integrate sustainability in all we do.
The Adirondack Park and Beyond
The Adirondack Semester lets undergraduates from all majors live as resident explorers, entrepreneurs, environmental scientists, poets, and policy advocates of the Adirondack Park, one of the largest protected landscapes in North America and Clarkson's "backyard."
Students who are committed to learn about environmental science, policy, economics and the human history and contemporary issues of the Adirondacks are encouraged to apply. Learn more about the Adirondack Semester.
For those who want to go further afield, we also offer a two-week intensive work/study experience at Devil's Thumb Ranch in Colorado's Rocky Mountains, and study abroad programs around the globe.
From the Adirondacks to the Netherlands
Mackenzie Peters '23, recently graduated with a bachelor's in Environmental Engineering and a minor in Environmental Science. Mackenzie grew up in the Adirondack Park and always knew she wanted to help the environment and lead a life of sustainability. That led her to Clarkson, and eventually to the Technical University of Delft in the Netherlands. Read her blog post about her time abroad, her experiences at Clarkson, and the job waiting for her after graduation!
There are so many ways to get involved in sustainability efforts on campus. Here are just a few:
- Join the Garden Club to grow fresh organic vegetables for our campus community.
- Collect and feed food waste to the campus anaerobic digester.
- Walk, hike, and bike our wooded trail system or paddle the Raquette River with our Outing Club.
- Analyze data from the campus solar and wind power systems.
- Design and test a zero-emission snowmobile with a SPEED team.
- Join Engineers for International Sustainability to design low-cost solutions for clean water or energy.