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Nature and Society

Potential careers include Natural Resource and Wildlife Manager, Land and Water Conservation Specialist, Environmental Planner, Environmental Hazards Analyst, Parks and Outdoor Recreation Manager, Sustainable Development Program Officer, Environmental Educator, Environmental Justice Advocate, Environmental Communication Specialist, Corporate Sustainability Officer, and Tour Guide.

Potential employers include federal, state, and local government agencies (e.g., National Park Service, Environmental Protection Agency, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, McLean County Regional Planning Commission); non-governmental organizations (e.g., Natural Resources Defense Council, The Nature Conservancy, Greenpeace, Oxfam America); and the private sector (e.g., energy utilities, natural resource producers, environmental consulting firms, waste management companies, real estate developers). Following this concentration is good preparation for graduate studies in fields including nature-society geography, environmental studies, or sustainability studies.


  • Minimum of 15 hours from the following geography courses*:

    • GEO 207 Natural Disasters
    • GEO 308 Quantitative Methods II
    • GEO 211 Earth’s Dynamic Weather
    • GEO 322 Sustainable Cities
    • GEO 235.02 Latin America
    • GEO 334 Political Ecology
    • GEO 265 Our National Parks
    • GEO 336 Urban Geography
    • GEO 304 GIS Applications
    • GEO 342 Economic Geography
    • GEO 305 Remote Sensing
    • GEO 344 Biogeography
    • GEO 306.22 Geography of Chicago
  • Suggested complementary courses, especially if pursuing a graduate degree*:

    • BSC 201 Ecology BSC
    • 202 Human Ecology
    • BSC 337 Restoration Ecology
    • COM 274 Environmental Communication
    • ECO 255 Introduction to Natural Resource and Environmental Economics
    • ENG 349 Technical and Professional Writing II
    • ENG 249 Technical and Professional Writing
    • PHI 236 Values and the Environment
    • HIS 240 American Environmental History
    • POS 236 Environmental Politics and Policy
    • PHY 207 Energy and Climate Change
    • SOC 362 Population
    • SOC 330 Society and Environment

*Some of these courses may have prerequisites.

Recommended Minors

Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, Economics, Environmental Studies (highly recommended), Foreign Language (any), Physics, Political Science, Sociology.