Master of Environmental Studies

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Change the world with the Master of Environmental Studies program

The Master of Environmental Studies (MES) program at the University of Pennsylvania helps you translate your passion for the environment into a fulfilling career. The program offers you a rigorous academic grounding in environmental science and exceptional opportunities to conduct research in the field. In addition, you gain the professional networks and individualized professional development you need to excel in your work, whether as a researcher, policy advocate, teacher or business executive.

The Master of Environmental Studies program provides an innovative, interdisciplinary approach to the study of the environment. Built with flexibility in mind, you can choose from a variety of concentrations or create your own path to suit your interests, experience and goals, all with the guidance of our world-class faculty and built upon the foundation of Ivy League science courses. You will gain the breadth of knowledge necessary to address complex issues in the environment, while also developing the depth of expertise required to become a successful environmental professional.

Where theory meets practice

Our students don’t wait until they leave the program to start making a difference. The heart of the Master of Environmental Studies program is the passion of our students and faculty to create change in the world, from helping to conserve endangered species to implementing energy-efficient policies at the local and national levels. Many of our distinguished professors also influence professional practice outside the University, bringing their experience and broad networks from the worlds of policy, business and consulting into the classroom. 

From the beginning of the program, your education occurs both in the classroom and in the field. Our faculty and staff work one-on-one with you to connect you with relevant, engaging internships and fieldwork opportunities that give you hands-on experience in the field of your choice.

Designed for practicing and aspiring environmental professionals

The Master of Environmental Studies program is designed to encourage your ongoing professional contributions and career development while you earn your degree. Many of our students find meaningful ways to blend their academic and current professional experiences throughout the program, by partnering with faculty to design projects and research experiences that tackle real-world challenges from their workplace.

We provide you with a rigorous, elite educational experience that you can access part time and in the evenings while you continue to work. Full-time students can earn the 12-course degree in two years, while part-time students finish in between two and four years, depending on their course load each semester. 

Connect with us today

The Penn Master of Environmental Studies program is built upon the strong personal connections between students, teachers and program staff. We welcome you to give us a call with any questions you may have, or meet with us in person on campus.

Related links:

MES in the Community

MES in the Community

Read about how a cross-country trip led Tony Larson, MES '12, to create a company dedicated to building affordable green housing in Philadelphia communities.

Read Tony's Story >

Upcoming Graduate Fair

Upcoming Graduate Fair

Visit campus October 2nd at 5:30 p.m. to hear from our graduate and post-baccalaureate programs staff.

Register Now >

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