Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 68.81
Liaison Michael Mendoza
Submission Date Jan. 4, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Houston
AC-3: Undergraduate Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Michael Mendoza
Sustainability Manager
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer at least one sustainability-focused major, degree program, or the equivalent for undergraduate students (I.e. an interdisciplinary academic program that concentrates on sustainability as an integrated concept)?:
Yes

Name of the sustainability-focused undergraduate degree program:
Bachelor of Science in environmental sciences

A brief description of the undergraduate degree program:

In addition to completing a wide array of environmentally minded courses, students completing the Bachelor of Science in environmental sciences are required to complete many courses that are directly related to sustainability, including introduction to climate change, introduction to air pollution, introduction to global climate change, and air pollution meteorology.


The website URL for the undergraduate degree program:
Name of the sustainability-focused, undergraduate degree program (2nd program):
Bachelor of Science in industrial design

A brief description of the undergraduate degree program (2nd program):

Across its over 50-year history, the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture at the University of Houston has remained focused on design as the fundamental activity of the discipline. The college houses Texas's first program in industrial design (product design). This degree program serves to further distinguish the college from competing programs and adds faculty expertise in areas important to the future, such as sustainability, advanced materials, human factors, advanced computing in design, and methods of industrialized production. The Industrial Design program emerged from an established and respected university in one of the largest and most dynamic urban centers: Houston. The resources and environment provided an ideal learning context for the discipline of Industrial Design with resources unique to the metro area, such as NASA, the Texas Media Center, and diverse industrial entities. The education model for the industrial design (ID) program focuses on addressing a new structure of learning by connecting and integrating design knowledge in new, useful and meaningful ways for the student. The ID program emphasizes the learner's generative and discovery-oriented learning, explained through the categories of integrated learning, collaborative learning, and project-oriented learning. The College of Architecture seeks applicants to their programs who possess mechanical inventiveness, aesthetic awareness, creativity, commitment, and initiative contributing to their potential to become leaders in architecture and industrial design.


The website URL for the undergraduate degree program (2nd program):
Name of the sustainability-focused, undergraduate degree program (3rd program):
Bachelor of Science in environmental design

A brief description of the undergraduate degree program (3rd program):

The Bachelor of Science in environmental design follows many of the degree plans of architecture degrees with less of an emphasis on professional practice and more on an emphasis on environmental factors. Students have the opportunity to take more electives, particularly related to sustainability, and in general are exposed to more interdisciplinary concepts than traditional architecture students. This includes a comprehensive survey of historical architecture strategies and a required elective in social and behavioral sciences.


The website URL for the undergraduate degree program (3rd program):
The name and website URLs of all other sustainability-focused, undergraduate degree program(s):
Does the institution offer one or more sustainability-focused minors, concentrations or certificates for undergraduate students?:
Yes

Name of the sustainability-focused undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate:
Interdisciplinary minor in energy and sustainability

A brief description of the undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate:

The Energy & Sustainability minor welcomes students from all majors. Although housed in the Honors College, it is open to all qualified students. The minor is only four years old, but early graduates have found the breadth of knowledge available in its courses to be an advantage in the job market, particularly in the energy-dominated economy of the Houston region.

The program takes an aggressively interdisciplinary approach to the study of sustainable energy systems. It pays special attention to the crowded intersection of energy security and environmental stewardship. Here we find technical, economic, environmental, and political issues raised by the production and consumption of different fuels. These range from the traditional environmental impacts of energy use on air, water, and land to the global challenges of climate change.

The most significant issues of the 21st century loom large in this course, and students are encouraged to learn to think creatively and independently about them. Breadth of understanding is a central goal of interdisciplinary study, and our minor offers a blend of courses in an array of disciplines, including business, engineering, the natural sciences, architecture, economics, political science, and history.

The required introductory and capstone courses combine with the wide choice of electives and research projects in many of the classes to give students ample flexibility to learn in depth about topics of special interest or to acquire a breadth of knowledge about energy & sustainability. Understanding these two closely-related topics will be essential to responsible citizenship in the coming decades.


The website URL for the undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate:
Name of the sustainability-focused undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):
Minor in atmospheric science

A brief description of the undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):

This minor offers a scientific complement to other sustainability-related majors. Students complete courses in: global climate change, atmospheric science, and meteorology.


The website URL for the undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):
Name of the sustainability-focused undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
Minor in world cities

A brief description of the undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):

Housed in the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture, this interdisciplinary and interdepartmental minor encourages students to critically explore cities of the world from different geographical, chronological and disciplinary perspectives in an effort to help them develop analytical tools for understanding complex urban phenomena. Sustainability is a major emphasis for the college as a whole and this minor specifically addresses the urban aspect of global sustainability challenges and solutions.


The website URL for the undergraduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
The name and website URLs of all other sustainability-focused undergraduate minors, concentrations and certificates:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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