Minors at SFWS


Natural Resources Ecology

Natural resources ecology is a broad and rapidly evolving field that includes landscape, plant, animal and abiotic systems.   A minor in Natural Resources Ecology provides students with the opportunity to gain knowledge about a wide-range of ecological concepts by taking core courses in landscape, wetland and forest ecology.  Students then select additional courses that focus on the system that interests them most.  This minor is designed for students who would like to pursue careers in areas such as plant or restoration ecology, conservation biology, natural resource education, or fish or wildlife law enforcement.

Some professional positions that students with this minor may fill include:

  • Natural resource technician
  • Conservation biologist
  • Extension professional
  • Natural resource educator


Nature-based Recreation

Tourism is one of the world’s largest industries and has witnessed significant growth over the last half century. One of the fastest growing segments of the industry, Ecotourism, is anchored in nature-based experiences. Nature-based recreation activities such as hiking, camping, fishing, mountain biking, bird watching, sight-seeing, and hunting benefit society in a variety of ways. Benefits include much needed escape from everyday life, healthy exercise, excitement and adventure and even economic benefits to local towns and companies.  Students in this minor will learn the theory, principles and values, business and management, communication skills, and conservation foci of nature-based recreation and ecotourism. The minor is designed for students who are interested in careers in government, in private business, and non-profit companies who offer outdoor recreation opportunities.

Some professional positions that students may fill include:

  • Natural Resource Manager
  • Park Ranger
  • Environmental Planner
  • Community-Based Conservation Consultant
  • Tourism Consultant
  • Interpretive Ranger
  • Community Recreation Director
  • Tour Coordinator/Ecotourism Operator
  • Forest Protection Officer
  • Education and Operations Director


Urban Environmental Sciences

More people live in urban areas than ever before. Natural resource specialists with training in urban areas are increasingly needed to manage resources at the expanding urban-rural fringe and within cities. Students opting for the Urban Natural Resources minor will understand the unique demands placed on natural resources in an urban setting. This minor is designed for those pursuing a Natural Resources Management degree but is also available for others students at Auburn interested in the urban environment. Coursework for this minor includes urban forestry, urban ecology, and urban geography along with other urban courses available.  This minor is well suited for students looking to pursue careers as urban forestry, urban arboriculture, and natural resource planning.

See courses in this minor.

Some professional positions that students may fill include:

  • Urban forester
  • Urban and regional planners
  • Wildlife manager
  • Urban natural resource specialists


Watershed Science and Management

Freshwater is an essential resource but becoming increasingly scarce in many parts of the world. Watershed science and management is an expanding field that involves managing the availability, quantity, and quality of water. Professionals in this field must have a firm understanding of the various natural processes and human activities that affect water.  The Watershed Science and Management minor is intended to provide background courses in natural and physical sciences along with upper-level courses on watershed management, wetland ecology, soil conservation, and electives that match student interests. This minor is well suited for students looking for a career in watershed science, soil conservation, water management, or wetland ecology.

See courses in this minor.

Some professional positions that students with this minor may fill include:

  • Watershed scientist
  • Environmental consultant
  • Water quality regulator
  • Municipal water planner
  • Wetland ecologist


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