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Sustainability Education Programs

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#Education #Online Courses #Sustainability Degrees


Alidia Vane

As sustainability becomes an increasingly vital aspect of our lives, many individuals are eager to deepen their knowledge about how they can contribute positively to the planet. While the 1y4e site serves as a great introduction to various actions you can take to contribute to a more sustainable world, some people may be inspired to take their learning further. Whether you’re looking for free resources or considering pursuing a sustainability degree, there are plenty of options available to help you take your learning and action to the next level.

Here are some options to consider:

Free Online Courses:

UN CC:e-Learn: The One UN Climate Change Learning Partnership (UN CC:Learn) offers free online courses and tutorials in three focus areas: circular economy, climate change, and green economy. There are currently courses available in 17 languages, and many of the courses come with a free certificate of completion. One notable course is their “Introduction to Sustainable Finance” course, which teaches how sustainable finance supports sustainable development and how sustainable finance can be implemented in the real world.

Global Warming I: The Science and Modeling of Climate Change by the University of Chicago: This free online course, taught by geophysics professor, researcher, and author David Archer, explains the science of global warming in an accessible way. The course is specifically designed for those without much scientific background, making it suitable for students at any level. If you want to take your learning to the next level, the companion course, “Global Warming II: Create Your Own Models in Python,” teaches basic Python skills by guiding you through building Python models of the Earth system.

Non-Degree Certificate Programs in Sustainability:

Many colleges and universities offer non-degree certificate programs that help individuals expand their knowledge base and skillset as relates to sustainability. Some of these programs are taught at the graduate level and help individuals build upon their past studies, such as the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Certificate in Environmental Sustainability and Harvard’s 5 Graduate Certificates in Sustainability. Others are designed for professionals in specific industries or at specific stages in their career, such as the Stanford Graduate School of Business Sustainability Strategies Program, for corporate employees who want to become sustainability leaders. To find certificate programs that are relevant to you, check out the “Action” link below or try an online search for “sustainability certificate programs for [your industry, profession, or experience level].”

Permaculture Design Certificates: If you’re specifically interested in permaculture design principles, consider pursuing a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC). The PDC is a 72-hour standardized curriculum culminating in a design project. Upon completion of the course, candidates receive an internationally recognized PDC certificate. Approved PDC curriculums are taught by many instructors, including both in-person, online, and hybrid formats. Use your search engine of choice to learn more about PDC programs that meet your needs and interests.

Sustainability Degrees:

There is an ever-increasing variety of degrees in the sustainability field. You can pursue an undergraduate degree specializing in sustainability, such as an Associate of Science or Bachelor of Science in Sustainability. If you want to take your learning to the next level, there are a variety of Master’s programs available with a sustainability focus, including Master of Arts, Master of Science, and Master of Business Administration programs. Finally, a variety of doctoral degrees are available in sustainability, sustainable development, and related fields. To learn more about degrees available in the field, check out the “Action” link below.

Professional Trainings:

NOAA Climate Education Program: The Climate Education Program is a NOAA program working with educators to increase climate literacy. The program is a great resource for teachers as well as informal educators, such as community group leaders and managers. For teachers, the program offers a wealth of resources, including standards-based lessons and informational weekly webinars, through their partnership with the Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN).

Run on Climate Trainings and Leadership Development: Run on Climate is a nonprofit working to positively impact local environmental policy by supporting environmentally-conscious candidates for local office, providing policy resources, and offering leadership development opportunities for local organizers. Their trainings cover a variety of topics, from campaigning for local office to grassroots fundraising.

Sunrise Movement New Member Training Series: Sunrise is a movement of young people dedicated to stopping the climate crisis and implementing Green New Deal policies. Their Sunrise New Member Training series is a set of two 3-hour training sessions covering the climate crisis, the Green New Deal, Sunrise, and how you can get involved. In addition, attendees have the opportunity to learn key skills and connect with other young people passionate about climate action.

When choosing the right program for you, consider your budget, time availability, learning preferences, and career and personal goals. Keep in mind that your journey toward a sustainable lifestyle can always start with free online resources and gradually progress to more advanced degrees as your interest, skills, and knowledge grow. Regardless of your choice, by taking your learning to the next level, you are further empowering yourself to make a meaningful impact on our planet’s future.

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