Graham Sustainability Institute

Sustainability and the Campus Course


This hands-on course uses the U-M campus as a "living-learning laboratory" to actively explore the ecological, social, and economic dimensions of sustainability.

This interactive, interdisciplinary course draws upon theory and practice in sustainability, environmental management, organizational change, and social advocacy. Students conduct a substantial, hands-on group project in conjunction with a university sponsor. Students complete the course with an understanding of the campus as a lever for social/environmental change and with the personal tools to act as change agents. This course addresses real-life challenges of campus sustainability and includes the following activities: Site visits, Guest lectures, Discussions, and Group projects.

  • ENVIRON 391 project teams have created or helped launch major initiatives at the university, including the UM Campus Farm, the Ann Arbor bike share program, the "Go Blue Box" reusable container takeout program, the "Welcome to Planet Blue" guide, greening of commencement and Camp Michigania, and more. Please search below for the final reports from past projects.

391 Alternatives

Some students may not be able to register for Environment 391, due to conflicts with degree major and minor course requirements. There are a number of approved alternatives.

Criteria for alternatives: 1) Sustainability-related, 2) Minimum of 3 credits (can be one of your required major-minor courses), 3) Project-based focusing on a sustainability challenge, and 4) Interdisciplinary interaction with students representing multiple disciplines. An example of a course alternative is ME433 Advanced Energy Solutions, suitable for those with STEM experience. See the list below for additional course alternatives.

Additional - Pre-approved Course Alternatives

Also see Academic Requirements and Field Experiences for additional details about the program requirements.