Small group work

It's More than School

At the School of the Environment we believe scientists, artists, planners and humanists need to work together to design an environmentally sustainable future. Our program integrates different fields of knowledge that impact our understanding of the environment, and we give students the skills they need to become environmental leaders.

What is the Middlebury School of the Environment?

  • Our six-week environmental studies program is designed to create immersive learning communities in which students work closely with faculty, practitioners, and each other. 
  • Undergraduates earn credits for three full courses in classes that emphasize self-directed projects and field work. 
  • We offer two different tracks of study: one for students with prior coursework in environmental studies; and one for students who are just getting started, or are new to environmental studies. Both tracks focus on interdisciplinary and experiential learning with considerable time spent outside of the classroom.
  • The curriculum includes elective courses in environmental science, video production, philosophy and humanities, and more.
  • Coursework is supported with leadership training in which students interact with practitioners from some of the most exciting organizations working in environment today.
  • Our program prepares students for environmental internships and jobs, and the chance to have meaningful impact on the world.  We like to think our program helps students discover a life of meaning. 

Where is it?

The School of the Environment is located on Middlebury College’s main campus in Middlebury, Vermont.

Why study in Vermont?

Vermont is not only one of the most beautiful states in the country, it is one of the leading states in renewable energy development and local sustainable business development. Middlebury’s campus offers immediate access to the diverse environments of Vermont’s Champlain Valley: small towns, working farms and forests, the vast Green Mountain National Forest, Lake Champlain, and the Adirondack Mountains. And Burlington, Vermont’s largest city, is only an hour away.

Why study environmental studies at Middlebury College?

  • Middlebury College founded the first environmental studies program in the United States, and the program has been top-rated for over 50 years.
  • The College is known for its immersive summer study programs. (Our Language Schools and Bread Loaf School of English are world renowned.) We value quality interaction between students and faculty with learning that is enriching and transformational.
  • We have excellent facilities for environmental studies and environmental science courses: the LEED platinum Franklin Environmental Center; the science labs in McCardell Bicentennial Hall; the R/V Folger, Middlebury’s state-of-the-art research vessel on Lake Champlain; and diverse renewable energy systems right on campus, including a solar farm and biomass plant.

What are the courses like?

Our core courses emphasize hands-on practice, interdisciplinary approaches, local engagement, and global perspectives. Our electives are dynamic and innovative. On any given day students might be on Middlebury's research boat in Lake Champlain, testing for pollutants; working on a video documentary; or designing a game that simulates how environmental problems are solved. Students study a wide variety of subjects, from environmental justice to renewable energy to systems thinking to policy development. 

What makes it different from any other summer school?

  • Our program is designed to tackle the most pressing environmental questions of our time. We integrate classroom learning with hands-on experience, and give students the chance to interact closely with highly accomplished faculty and practitioners.
  • Our curriculum overlaps with environmental leadership training, where we bring in national environmental leaders for workshops, presentations and discussions that bring students directly into the global conversation on environment.

Who are the students?

Students come from colleges and universities all across the country, and from a wide variety of cultural backgrounds and perspectives. You do not need to be environmental studies majors to apply.

How much college credit is available?

We offer nine semester-hours of credit, the equivalent of three college courses.

Is there financial aid?

Yes, we offer a generous need-based financial aid package.

When is the next session?

June 23 to August 4, 2017.

How can I apply?

The application process has a few simple steps. Admission is on a rolling basis, so applications are accepted and placement offered until the program is full.