Environmental Science

Nature is our laboratory.

The Environmental Science program at Rocky Mountain College emphasizes interdisciplinary studies in the field and lab and a broad range of hands-on experiences. Classes are designed to include a wide variety of field-based, conservation-focused projects that allow our students to engage deeply in the theory and practice of environmental science and conservation biology. Students also gain extensive, hands-on experience with local flora and fauna and field survey techniques. Rocky Mountain College’s proximity to abundant natural resources and open land make for an ideal outdoor laboratory to study human interactions and impacts on the environment. Students have the opportunity to study and work alongside the Yellowstone River, the longest free-flowing river in the U.S. Students and faculty also conduct ongoing research at multiple sites within the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

Our average class size is about 14 students, greatly enhancing learning opportunities. Students have the opportunity to engage in plenty of one-on-one time with our faculty and benefit from interactions with agency and industry professionals in the classroom and the field. Our classes incorporate numerous field trips throughout the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Classes have recently visited Yellowstone National Park, the Beartooth Mountains, the American Prairie Reserve, the Crow Indian Reservation, Charles M Russel Wildlife Refuge, Tanzania, and the Galapagos Island.

Highlights


  • Intensive hands-on approach
  • Small class sizes that facilitate field experiences
  • Undergraduate research opportunities both inside and outside the classroom
  • Internship placement in local, state, and federal agencies, NGOs, environmental education, and research
  • International academic and travel opportunities
  • Specialty courses that include field survey techniques in zoology, range ecology, wildlife conservation, tropical ecology, and forest ecology

Our Philosophy

"The truth is that we have never conquered the world, never understood it; we only think we have control. We do not even know why we respond in a certain way to other organisms and need them in diverse ways so deeply."
Edward O. Wilson

Career Pathways

Recent Graduates

  • Katy Beattie, Wild Sky Specialist, American Prairie Reserve

  • J. Simone Durney, PhD Student, Montana State University - Ecology Department

  • Sean Flynn, Eastern Montana Aquatic Invasive Species Supervisor, Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks

  • Andrhea Massey, MS student, University of Arkansas-Fayetteville

  • Cameron Sapp, Staff Environmental Scientist, Montana State University, Terracon Consultants, Inc.

  • Renee Seacor, University of Oregon School of Law

Internships and Research

We have developed working relationships with local agencies and non-profit organizations that allow our students to engage with the professional community while building their technical skills in the field. Students pursue a variety of internship opportunities throughout the region. Recent students have worked with MT Fish Wildlife and Parks, USDA APHIS, the Audubon Education Center, the Omaha Zoo, Tippet Rise, Wind River National Park, USFS, and Montana Wilderness Association, and as research assistants in the field with various academic institutions studying wolves, bats, and fish.

Environmental Science faculty are engaged in active research projects in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, and students in the program are involved in research both inside the classroom and as independent student researchers. Students are invited to both assist with current research efforts and develop their own research projects.

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Degree Options

  • Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science
  • Minor in Environmental Science