Is your University offering an Energy Degree?

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Jan 7, 2002
At the university that I teach, we are adding an Energy Engineering degree starting next fall. Anyone else see this trend?


Colleges are rapidly adding new majors and minors in green studies, and students are filling them fast.
Nationwide, more than 100 majors, minors or certificates were created this year in energy and sustainability-focused programs at colleges big and small, says the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. That's up from just three programs added in 2005.
Two factors are driving the surge: Students want the courses, and employers want the trained students, says Paul Rowland, the association's executive director.
"There's a great perception that there's a sweet spot with energy to do good and do well, and it appears to be the place of job growth," says Rob Melnick, executive dean of the Global Institute of Sustainability at Arizona State University.

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The institute started an undergraduate program in sustainability studies — with a focus on solar — a year and a half ago. It now has about 600 students who've declared sustainability a major. "The growth rate is unprecedented," even though the program has the toughest admission standards of any school at the university, Melnick says.
Other schools are also seeing big demand, including:
•Illinois State University in Normal, Ill. The school of 21,000 students has 65 majors in renewable energy, a program started in 2008 with help from a $1 million Department of Energy grant. The program has "more students wanting in than we can handle," says Richard Boser, chair of the Department of Technology. Nearby employers, including those in wind energy, hope to hire future graduates, Boser says.
•Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In September it launched a minor in energy studies. A student survey said 43% of freshmen and sophomores were very or extremely interested in it. "That's a very large number," says Vladimir Bulovic, associate professor of communication and technology. MIT's student energy club has 1,700 members, vs. several hundred a few years ago, Bulovic says.
•University of California-Berkeley. The school has seen student interest in its introductory energy class explode. Ten years ago, it attracted 40 or so students. Now, the class runs 270, says Daniel Kammen, director of the school's Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory.
The Obama administration has estimated that jobs in energy and environmental-related occupations will grow 52% from 2000 through 2016, vs. 14% for other occupations.


Diamond Member
May 6, 2007
There is a new "green energy" class as an Electrical Engineering elective at the University of Illinois. Every is taking it because it's an "easy" course compared the other EE electives.

Glad I'm switching to Computer Enigneering :)
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