Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 67.15
Liaison Andrea Trimble
Submission Date March 4, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Virginia
AC-4: Graduate Program

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.00 / 3.00 Phoebe Crisman
Associate Professor of Architecture
School of Architecture
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Does the institution offer at least one sustainability-focused major, degree program, or the equivalent for graduate students?:
Yes

Name of the sustainability-focused graduate-level degree program:
Master of Urban and Environmental Planning

A brief description of the graduate-level degree program:

The Master of Urban and Environmental Planning degree prepares students to make significant contributions as professionals in a variety of public, private, and non-profit settings. A distinctive feature of our program is our commitment to community sustainability. Sustainability is addressed in specific courses with that title, but sustainability also provides the underlying framework for virtually all of the department’s courses. The title of our department is Urban and Environmental Planning. We believe it is necessary to consider both the urban and environmental aspects of a setting to address its issues, problems, and opportunities. We are as much concerned with the economy and issues of equity as we are with the environment and find it more useful to emphasize linkages than distinctions. We hope to inspire our students to share our enthusiasm for addressing the planning needs of sustainable communities.


Website URL for the graduate-level degree program:
Name of the sustainability-focused, graduate-level degree program (2nd program):
Darden School of Business - Business and Innovation Climate Change Initiative

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

Climate change, coupled with other urgent threats to our natural environment, poses one of the most significant and singular challenges faced by society in the 21st century. The world's ability to generate solutions will require substantive and disruptive innovation across a broad spectrum of sectors such as energy, transportation and the built environment.

How can we motivate leaders to address and mitigate these challenges? What role does government policy play to empower or restrict innovators and entrepreneurs? How should businesses best approach the clean innovation risks and opportunities before them.

The Business Innovation and Climate Change Initiative aims to answer these questions through leadership education, multi-stakeholder events, applied research and bipartisan analysis related to clean energy innovation. As part of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business' Washington, D.C.-area programs and research, the Initiative will seek to inform business practices, public policy and the productive intersection between the two.

The Initiative will be spearheaded by Darden's Batten Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and will include the following programs:

A biannual Sustainability Innovators Roundtable bringing together a group of senior executives and decision makers from diverse industries to address issues related to climate change and other environmental challenges. Briefings published following the roundtables will represent key vehicles for engaging corporate stakeholders and bridging the gap between corporations and the government.

A multi-day innovation summit in Washington, D.C., that will bring together corporate and nonprofit leaders, policy experts, academics, federal regulators and the media for in-depth dialogue and a workshop that will inform a “policy playbook” that will encourage innovation across a variety of industries.

A leadership academy, modeled after Darden's successful Emerging Leaders Program for state legislators, aimed at educating and advancing a meaningful dialogue about business innovation and climate change among a rising generation of policy makers, executives and thought leaders.

A fellows program, providing the opportunity for UVA students to spend meaningful time in a congressional office and help bridge the human capital gap on clean energy policy.


Website URL for the graduate degree program (2nd program):
Name of the sustainability-focused, graduate-level degree program (3rd program):
Environmental Sciences

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

The Department of Environmental Sciences (EVSC) is an academic department offering instruction and conducting research in the areas of ecology, geosciences, hydrology, and atmospheric sciences. This unique juxtaposition of several sciences in one department fosters cooperation and exchange among traditional disciplines that share similar methodological and philosophical problems. The research endeavors of both faculty and graduate students, whether disciplinary or interdisciplinary, deal largely with problems of fundamental scientific interest. Research fields include environmental biogeochemistry, coastal processes, hydrogeology, catchment hydrology, microbial ecology, wetlands ecology, terrestrial ecology, boundary-layer meteorology, atmospheric chemistry, and climatology. Initiatives involving groups of faculty in contaminant hydrogeology, global environmental change, and coastal ecosystems encompass a number of graduate research opportunities.

The department offers three graduate degree programs: The Master of Arts, Master of Science and the Doctor of Philosophy. The M.A. degree candidate must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours, including 24 credits of course work at the graduate level. The student’s M.A. program of study is developed in consultation with the candidate’s major professor and includes a thesis. Training in ecology, hydrology, atmospheric science, and geosciences is expected of the degree candidate. The M.S. program emphasizes new scientific research in addition to fundamental coursework. A degree candidate must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours including 24 hours of graduate level coursework. One course from each of the four core areas of the department (ecology, hydrology, geosciences, and atmospheric sciences) is required. The Ph.D. program degree emphasizes original research and independent study. The degree candidate is required to complete the four core-area courses as for the M.S., one additional 700-level course and a minimum of 54 credit hours including thesis research. Thesis committees are usually interdisciplinary and are composed according to the type of research to be conducted. Ph.D. candidates must pass a written and oral comprehensive examination administered by their dissertation committee within four semesters of entering the program.


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

Name of the graduate-level sustainability-focused minor, concentration or certificate:
Darden School of Business - Innovation for Sustainability

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

The objectives of this concentration are to provide students with knowledge about the global impacts on natural systems from rising energy and material consumption patterns; to inform students of institutions and policy instruments that influence business operations; to expose them to innovative processes and tools available; and to provide guidance on how innovative sustainability practices can be designed to increase revenues and lower costs. View a video about Darden's sustainability curriculum. Faculty Contact: Michael Lenox.


Website URL for the graduate minor, concentration or certificate:
Name of the graduate-level sustainability-focused minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):
Urban Design Certificate

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

The Urban Design Certificate program is open to graduate students in any department of the School of Architecture who want to pursue an interdisciplinary program that focuses on the sustainable design of urban areas. Participants in this certificate are asked to assume the cities of the future will respond coherently to environmental challenges. Urban growth cannot continue unchecked without a clear strategy for responding to climate change and the difficulty of generating sufficient clean energy. This program proposes to use the need for energy as a tool for discovering how we can design new cities. Energy can help to establish new relationships between the land and the city.

The curriculum for the Urban Design Certificate is comprised of nine credits in three required core courses; six credits in an urban design studio as designated by the program director and six credits of elective coursework.


Website URL for the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (2nd program):
Name of the graduate-level sustainability-focused minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
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A brief description of the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
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Website URL for the graduate minor, concentration or certificate (3rd program):
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The name and website URLs of all other graduate-level, sustainability-focused minors, concentrations and certificates:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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