University Launches Academy for the Environment

Earth Island Journal, Spring 2005 | Go to article overview

University Launches Academy for the Environment


Officials at the University of Nevada, Reno recently announced the creation of a new Academy for the Environment. Mike Collopy, professor and chair of the department of natural resources and environmental science in the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources, will serve as interim executive director of the new academy.

"This Academy for the Environment will make Nevada unique among western colleges of our size because of its holistic emphasis on environmental studies," said John Frederick, executive vice president and provost. "it will bring together more than 100 faculty, dozens of research programs and hundreds of students pursuing a wide variety of environmental programs across the University."

Faculty from Desert Research Institute, a nonprofit statewide division of the University and Community College System of Nevada, also will be integral participants in the new Academy, through teaching in the atmospheric sciences, ecology, evolution and conservation biology, environmental sciences and health, and hydrologic sciences graduate programs.

"Our University has a long and distinguished history in the teaching and research of a wide variety of environmental programs--from hydrology, ecology, and atmospheric sciences to other health and basic sciences, as well as world-class programs in environmental literature and humanities, agriculture, mining and engineering," said Frederick.

The breadth of the University's environmental programs--accounting for more than $10 million annually and spread throughout nearly every college and school--has prompted faculty, and administrators to create a new umbrella organization to simplify student access to environmental programs while stimulating interdisciplinary research and expanding environmental outreach programs across the state.

Frederick added: "Our prime focus is to better coordinate and raise the collective visibility of our campus' environmental programs. We hope to do this by taking advantage of our considerable historic expertise and our prime location in Nevada, with Lake Tahoe in our backyard."

As one of the top-tier research universities in the country, Nevada also has a growing presence in environmental research. Over the past three years, the University has received $3 million to support the newly formed Great Basin Center for Geothermal Energy. …

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