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Sustainability, Society & Resource Management (SSRM)

Bachelor of Integrated Studies Degree

Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
—World Commission on the Environment and Development

The complexity and interconnectedness of modern societies and the natural environment requires an interdisciplinary approach to making and implementing sustainable natural resource decisions. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “although their specific career paths might differ, sustainability professionals promote environmental protection, social responsibility, and profitability.” The field of sustainability is a growing, with job opportunities in the sciences, social sciences and the humanities.

Sustainability requires balance among four key objectives:

•    Collaborative processes that takes into account the needs of everyone
•    Protection and preservation of the natural environment
•    Careful and considered civic and industrial use of natural resources
•    Steady and increasing levels of economic growth and employment

Pittsburg State University Bachelor of Integrated Studies (BIS) degree in Sustainability, Society & Resource Management (SSRM) is the only program of its kind in the State of Kansas. This is a joint initiative between the departments of Biology, Geography and Communication. Our students learn through a variety of approaches, including classroom instruction, field exercises, and hands-on laboratory experiences. Additional opportunities for internships and independent research under the guidance of a faculty mentor are available. The BIS-SSRM program is supported by the GIS Laboratory in the Geography department and the CRL Laboratory in the Communication Department. Successful graduates will be qualified for employment in a broad range of private enterprise, government agencies and nonprofit organizations in the various natural resources fields, and will be well-equipped for graduate studies.

It's no secret our world is always changing. Sustainability is the key to giving you a competitive edge. Many organizations are implementing sustainability measures for a variety of reasons. Sustainability allows companies to increase profits, manage risks, and to engage many stakeholder groups, such as employees, the local community, and stockholders. In doing so, organizations are able to operate more efficiently, improve corporate reputations and corporate relations, and have a more positive impact on their local and regional communities.

Sustainability professionals may help their employers conserve resources (from energy to water to dollars) and improve efficiency; create new, more environmentally and socially responsible technologies or services; educate stakeholders about environmental and social issues, and facilitate planning and programming accordingly. Regardless of job title, the work of all sustainability professionals focuses on the intersection of people, places, spaces and the environments in which they exist

Degree Courses and Requirements





• City & Local Government

• Business Operations Specialists

• Urban Planners

• Community Development Analyst

• Environmental Impact Analyst

• Conservation Scientists

• Transportation, Storage, and Distribution Managers

• Industrial Production Managers

• Environmental Scientists

• Wildlife Manager

• Soil & Plant Scientists

• Land Developer

• Sustainability Coordinators

• Sustainability Educators

• Corporate Sustainability Trainers

Contact Alicia M. Mason, Ph.D., SSRM Program Coordinator

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