Environmental Science

Faculty Advisors:  Dr. Louise Weber, Dr. John Zimmerman

Welcome! You’ll be able to move mountains after participating in our programs, but you probably won’t want to.  If you join us, we stand for a Franciscan approach to conservation, restoration, and protection of natural resources.


Eastern Box Turtle found near campus.

What natural/environmental features are available at USF and nearby?

  • a greenhouse within the science building with headhouse and herbarium
  • two rain gardens and a bird garden
  • a photovoltaic array, providing shaded parking and renewable energy to power Hutzell Gymnasium
  • 108 acre main campus with our own lake (Mirror Lake)
  • the Hurley-Tieben Nature Area on campus with a restored prairie, small wooded area, two bee hives, a compost area, and Cougar Way Trail
  • large cemetery with some of the oldest trees in the city, within walking distance
  • a city park named Lindenwood with old growth trees, within walking distance
  • the 716 acre restored prairie and wetlands known as Eagle Marsh, within a few minutes drive
  • a 200 acre forest and wildlife management area named Buckner Park, within a few minutes drive
  • the 605 acre county park known as Fox Island, adjacent to Eagle Marsh
  • the River Greenway and its associated five major parks.  Fort Wayne is especially well known for its total of 86 city parks and greenways along its three rivers.
  • a zoo and botanical gardens within the city of Fort Wayne
  • Fort Wayne’s three famous rivers, namely the St. Mary’s and St. Joseph which come together in the center of the city to form the Maumee
  • a large lake district within an hour’s drive north and west of Fort Wayne
  • USF has frequent access to the Crooked Lake Field Station in northern Indiana owned by IPFW
  • and of course some of the Great Lakes within approximately 125 miles of the city
  • Indiana is home to one of the best state park systems in the country.  Favorite destinations include Brown County State Park, Chain of Lakes, Turkey Run, and Shades, but there are many more.  Indiana has two long trails for multiday hiking, the Bloodroot trail in northern Indiana, and the Knobstone in southern Indiana.hurley-tieben sign

What are the academic programs offered at USF?

We offer an associate’s degree (two year) and a bachelor’s degree (four year) in Environmental Science.  This major is housed within the Biology Department. Two concentrations exist within the bachelor’s degree, the Liberal Arts concentration, which balances courses in biology, chemistry, and Earth science, and the Conservation Biology concentration, which trains students in field biology, working with rare species, and wildlife management.


Students carrying compost bins to their new home.