Academic Programs

Global Sustainability Certificate

PCGS alumnus ('15) Mubarak U. on his internship in Hawaii.

PCGS alumnus ('15) Mubarak U. on his internship in Hawaii.

Certificate Description:

The program is intended to prepare students to address complex regional, national, and global challenges related to sustainability and the ability to innovate in diverse cultural, geographic, and demographic contexts. The graduate certificate program is unique as the curriculum is fully integrated to provide a systems perspective for learning and development of an analytical perspective. The target student audience can come from a diverse array of backgrounds and career interests as the program provides a sustainability framework to be used as a foundation for any career. The primary goal of the program is to foster sustainability principles and critical thinking, equipping students with the tools needed to address the grand challenges of sustainability.

The certificate program in Global Sustainability insures understanding of the principles of sustainability and the interdependence of the environment, the economy, and social systems to become effective stewards of natural resources and the environment. The program seeks to advance students' ability to understand and address real-world environmental problems; apply systems approach to manage social-ecological systems; and develop critical thinking skills for affection decisions involving environmental policy, resource management, biodiversity conservation, and human health. The program takes a pragmatic systems perspective and holistic approach to address issues of sustainability that consider water, energy, and food sustainability and security.

Students completing the certificate will achieve an advanced understanding of the sciences of sustainability; its real world application; and increase opportunity for job advancement. The program will allow students from diverse backgrounds to pursue interests in sustainability sciences in some depth without requiring the breadth of course work and extensive research required for the Master's degree.


Required Courses (12 credit hours): 

This course discusses basic concepts and principles of sustainable development. It discusses systems thinking and different sustainability perspectives such as local/global and historical/future. Best practices will be analyzed through case studies.

*This course is available on-campus and online.

The course provides sustainability practitioners an overview of how economics and finance enhance sustainability. The emphasis is on environmental economics and innovative finance; students learn how scarce natural resources can be optimally allocated.

*This course is available on-campus and online.

The course develops the critical system thinking skills to solve sustainability challenges. It covers quantitative system analysis techniques including environmental impact assessment, life-cycle assessment, cost-benefit analysis and decision analysis.

*This course is available on-campus and online.

This course will use an interdisciplinary approach to explore climate vulnerability, and pathways of climate mitigation and adaption. Case studies will be reviewed to provide insight on climate change adaption planning and societal resilience. This course is offered both online and on-campus.

*This course is available on-campus and online.


Point of Contact

If you have any general questions relating to PCGS graduate certificate programs,please contact

Toure Rider