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Specializations

Specialize in a key area of environmental science and management to deepen your knowledge, and to develop technical skills that further your career potential.

Master of Environmental Science and Management students at Bren choose one (or more) specializations for their graduate degree. MESM specializations have been designed to tackle some of the most critical environmental problems, from coastal marine ecosystems to environmental politics.

One specialization is required; students can choose more than one specialization. Students are required to complete a minimum of 36 units of electives in a primary specialization to build depth of knowledge in a particular area and develop technical skills. Specializations are chosen during Winter Quarter of the first year. Guided by faculty, students prepare a customized Program of Study to match their individual interests and needs.

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Coastal Marine Resources Management

Gain an understanding of marine science, environmental policy and law, conservation, aquaculture, fisheries, and the institutions that manage marine resources. Learn how to apply this knowledge to management, restoration, and conservation of ocean ecosystems. Expand upon this strong foundation with advanced topics in climate change science, toxicology, pollution prevention, energy and technology, environmental negotiation, financial management, and more.

Conservation Planning

Learn to systematically plan for conserving, managing, and restoring wild populations and ecosystems in a changing environment. The Conservation Planning specialization is grounded in population and community ecology, landscape ecology, conservation biology, and climate change biology. Conservation planning requires technical training in ecological inventory and monitoring, data analysis, mapping, and modeling. You will also learn about regulatory and policy frameworks surrounding issues such as land and water use planning, natural resource management, and endangered species protection.

Corporate Environmental Management

Gain an understanding of how private-sector firms address environmental and natural resource issues and promote shareholder value, creating important link between quality of environment and natural resources and a firm’s overall market objectives. Become an effective sustainability leader within a company and guide corporate action. You will learn how to enhance competitive strategy and incorporate environmental objectives, while responding to new market opportunities, social demands, and regulatory pressures.

Economics and Politics of the Environment

Learn to develop and implement public policies dealing with environmental problems, manage public environmental resources, and work in firms and other organizations that must respond to these policies and management systems. Acquire knowledge about interactions between the public and private sectors and about impacts of political processes on efforts to solve environmental problems. Learn how to identify and evaluate policy options and effectively communicate the results to policymakers and regulators. 

Energy and Climate

Develop the knowledge and skills needed to understand economics, policy instruments, and technological and non-technological aspects of climate change, where intimate understanding of energy systems plays a crucial role. Identify complex connections between the Earth's climate and technological systems including energy production and consumption. Learn to effectively anticipate, evaluate, and craft responses to environmental impacts of climate change.

Pollution Prevention and Remediation

Gain the ability to recognize pollutants, characterize the extent and consequences of pollution in the environment, identify and evaluate alternatives for remediation and prevention, and evaluate the economic and political viability of alternatives. This specialization prepares students for careers in pollution management through consulting, industry, government, or nonprofit organizations. 

Water Resources Management

Study hydrologic and biogeochemical processes in watersheds and receiving water bodies. Gain an understanding of the economics of natural resources, policies, laws, and regulations related to water resources and their stewardship. Learn GIS tools, remote sensing, spatial data analysis, and modeling, among other relevant analytical techniques.

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Are you ready to solve environmental problems?

Request more information, bring your questions to an admissions webinar, or start your application online.