Developing a Curriculum that Allows Students to Reach Career Objectives
Lynn Dudley, Florida State University
Because the program has only been in place for three years, the number of graduates is small and employment feedback limited. Thus far, students are reporting that they are finding employment in state government and private consulting companies. The curriculum for the policy degree is less rigorous in preparatory courses in math and science, but gives students the option of taking philosophy, political science, and social science courses. There is a capstone requirement for each degree, but the capstone courses differ. The science degree requires a field based capstone in which students gain hands-on experience in collecting and analyzing water samples, collecting soil samples, determining surface and subsurface hydrologic properties, and land survey. The objective is to give students fundamental exposure to determining environmental properties related to assessing a contaminated site. Students are required to use GIS to map the properties they measured and provide a site analysis. The policy capstone is led by an environmental lawyer. The course introduces students to the legal aspects of resource management. The course reviews environmental law and landmark cases. The mechanisms for policy creation related to resource management are explored. Students are required to provide a review and analysis of a topic of their choice.