Changes in the IES program

Fall 2011 –

Older students and alumni of the Institute of Environmental Sciences (IES) co-major/masters program may now have a hard time locating their office. This is because IES moved to a new location in Upham Hall as of October.

The director of IES Tom Crist is excited about the changes coming about both in location and curriculum. Crist, a zoology professor for the past 17 years, said the program has undergone a few minor changes over its 40 years of existence. It used to be that this type of degree was only offered as a masters program, but now students can co-major in environmental science.

“The different co-majors are now suited for interdisciplinary studies,” Crist said. “Those are (in) business, architecture, and humanities.”

Outreach coordinator for IES, Suzanne Zazycki, said the progress has been an accumulation of little steps along the way, but it is exciting that IES is no longer restrained to a master’s program.

“The added co-majors are now housed under IES,” Zazycki said.

There was an open house for the new office on display Friday Oct. 21, with many professors and faculty members conversing and sharing their thoughts on the change of scenery.

But the big event that weekend was to follow on Saturday, when a handful of Miami alum returned to campus to discuss how they are currently using their IES degree. Many undergraduate and graduate students are interested in how they can use this in their careers.

For example, graduate student Travis Drury attended the open house. Drury said while doing his undergraduate at Ohio Northern University he came upon an internship at the Cumberland Gap National Park.

After graduating, Drury was still interested in the internship so he stayed there for a while, until deciding to come to Miami to earn a master’s in environmental science. Drury said he would like to be in some kind of environmental career, but he is not sure where it will take him yet.

The weekend was about helping students getting their undergraduate or graduate degree in IES the opportunity to learn about how they can use it in the future.


By: Mandi Cardosi

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