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The Minor in Environmental Studies (ENV Minor) is designed for Princeton undergraduates who are interested in the scientific, political, humanistic, and/or technological dimensions of environmental problems and who wish to demonstrate proficiency in Environmental Studies. Students from all academic disciplines are eligible  to participate.

Students in the ENV Minor are required to satisfy the course and research criteria below. Requirements and course offerings also are published annually in the Princeton Undergraduate Announcement.

Course Structure
Two foundational courses, at least one of which is at or above the 300 level, and three elective courses, at least two of which are at or above the 300 level. Of the five courses, at least two courses must be in Humanities, and/or Social Sciences and two must be in Natural Sciences and/or Engineering. Find more information on academic Areas of Study at Princeton.

  • Students are encouraged to complete a 200-level ENV foundation course prior to declaring the minor.
  • A foundation course may be used as an elective course, but an elective course may not be used as a foundation course.
  • No more than one elective course satisfying the requirement for the ENV Minor may also be counted toward the student’s departmental major or another minor/certificate.
  • All courses must be taken on a fully graded basis (i.e., no PDF) and graded as C or higher.
  • In all cases, students are encouraged to meet with the Director of the Program in Environmental Studies or Undergraduate Program Manager in order to choose an appropriate sequence of courses.

Independent Research
Students must investigate an environmental topic as a component of their independent work, which can take one of four forms: Click here for an archive of ENV senior theses organized by year.

  • a substantial part (e.g., a chapter) of their senior thesis.
  • a junior paper submitted to fulfill departmental requirement; supervising faculty needs to attest to its ENV focus.
  • a 15-20pp final report based on work done (at any stage of their undergrad career) during an HMEI internship supervised by a PU faculty. The supervising faculty must review and sign off on the paper as being of sufficient quality to satisfy an independent paper requirement.
  • a 15-20pp independent paper supervised and approved by an HMEI or HMEI-affiliated faculty.

Additional Requirements
Students are required to participate in a capstone series of 2-3 dinner discussions in their senior year. Students pursuing the ENV Minor are also required to participate in HMEI’s annual Discovery Day poster show in the spring of their senior year, in which they share with fellow students, faculty and staff the motivation, methodology, and final results of their independent research.

Students may declare the minor as early as the spring of their sophomore year but no later than fall semester of junior year. To pursue a Minor in Environmental Studies, please complete the ENV Minor Enrollment Form. Once submitted, you will be contacted by e-mail to schedule an appointment with the ENV Program Director or Amber Lee, the Undergraduate/Graduate Program Manager, to discuss your program of study.