skip to main content

Environmental Engineering, Bachelor of Science Degree


Overview


Student in an environmental engineering lab

Environmental engineers use their expertise to improve human health, the environment and quality of life. For example, environmental engineers may help purify drinking water, prevent water pollution or develop strategies to manage toxic or hazardous waste.

The primary focus of our environmental engineering program is water quality and water availability. However, we also offer a number of elective courses relating to air quality, solid waste management and renewable energy.

What Will I Learn?


Successful engineering students arrive at the University with a strong background in math and science. We recommend students have taken physics and chemistry courses in high school and are prepared to take calculus as freshmen.

Our program teaches students to apply basic science and engineering principles to solve environmental problems. The curriculum prepares students for the responsible and sustainable management of natural resources.

Graduates of the bachelor's degree in environmental engineering should be able to:

  • Apply their engineering knowledge and problem-solving skills in a professional environment
  • Understand and design environmental engineering systems
  • Work in multidisciplinary teams
  • Continue their education through graduate studies or ongoing professional development hours
  • Contribute to society at large through an understanding of and ability to communicate technical, social, environmental and ethical issues
  • Be aware of contemporary issues and engage in life-long learning

Degree Requirements


Recommended Schedule

View the recommended schedule on the course catalog.

Please note that requirements and course offerings may change, and you should consult your advisor to ensure your course schedule meets your individual needs.

The environmental engineering degree program requires coursework in four main areas:

  1. University core curriculum requirements
  2. Basic sciences, including biology, chemistry, math and physics
  3. Engineering science and design
  4. Technical electives

Students are required to take two capstone classes during the senior year. Capstone courses give you an opportunity to apply the knowledge you've gained during your degree program toward realistic engineering design problems.

Students must also take the Fundamentals of Engineering Examination administered by the Nevada Board of Professional Engineers. This exam is generally taken during the spring of your senior year. Register for ENGR 490 in order to have the exam recorded on your transcript.

Career Options


Environmental engineers can enjoy a range of career paths and work environments. They may work in an office setting, collaborating with planners and other engineers to develop new projects. They may consult with businesses or lawyers, providing expertise on environmental impact, or they may work outdoors analyzing samples or doing quality control.

Environmental engineers face strong demand for their skills on the job market, nationwide, as concerns about water use, climate change and pollution are on the rise. With accelerating population growth and limited resources, environmental engineers are taking a more prominent role, with issues surrounding water quality and water availability at the forefront.

Current estimates for job growth in the environmental engineering field are very strong, with projected 10-year job growth exceeding 30 percent, according to CNNMoney 2011 estimates. Additionally, wages in the field are highly competitive, with a 2011 report from Georgetown University showing environmental engineering majors had median salaries of $70,000.



Related Degrees and Programs

Contact Civil and Environmental Engineering

Phone (775) 784-6937
Fax (775) 784-1390
Email cee@unr.edu
Location Scrugham Engineering and Mines
Address University of Nevada, Reno
Reno, NV 89557

Take the next step...