Environmental Science Certificate
Watershed characterization and management is a relatively new, holistic approach that is currently being used nationally to address water quality and quantity issues. The watershed approach is a coordinated framework for environmental management that focuses on public and private sector efforts to address the highest priority problems within hydrologically-defined geographic areas (watersheds) taking into consideration both ground and surface water flow.
The aim of the watershed approach is to work with the regional community to prevent pollution and achieve and sustain environmental improvements. GIS is the tool employed to assimilate, analyze, and present data collected by professionals from many disciplines such as engineers, geologists, hydrologists, biologists, chemists, political/social scientists. It is imperative that the well-trained GIS technician has a fundamental understanding of the role that each of these disciplines have in the overall watershed process.
Students that complete the Environmental Science Certificate will be able to conduct watershed investigations on small watersheds and assist as a team member in watershed characterization on larger, more complex systems. Those that complete both the Environmental Science and the GIS Certificate programs will be able to play a pivotal role in the entry, analysis, and presentation of the data collected by the multidisciplinary watershed characterization and management team.