Master of Arts in Environmental Studies

Program Overview

Master of Arts in Environmental Studies
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In response to circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak, Cleveland State has updated graduate application processes. For Summer 2020 and Fall 2020 applications, the application fee is being waived and students who are not able to take the GRE will have this requirement waived. 

We encourage applicants to submit a personal statement of intent with your application. Personal statements may be submitted via email to, or uploaded directly to your admissions application. Questions? Please email us at

Welcome to the Master of Arts in Environmental Studies at the Levin College of Urban Affairs. The degree program is part of a campus-wide interdisciplinary initiative that offers students in environmental studies, environmental science and environmental engineering the opportunity to interact and learn in a cross-disciplinary setting.

We also offer a dual degree in Environmental Studies and a J.D. from the Cleveland Marshall College of Law, also at Cleveland State.

We are currently engaged in a strategic planning process for the MA degree, seeking input from former students, practitioners in the environmental field, and current students. For detailed information about the curriculum, please consult the MA Handbook.

The Master of Arts in Environmental Studies Program prepares students for careers in environmental policy and management while providing students with a broad, interdisciplinary course of study. Developing and managing human institutions, organizations and behaviors that restore, protect, and sustain the environment requires careful study of both natural and human systems and their interdependence. This task is at the core of an environmental studies degree program.

To equip students with a core foundation in environmental science,  policy, law, and management for professional careers that will “bridge the gap” between environmental scientists and public policy and management professionals, in order to protect the integrity, diversity, and resilience of existing social-ecological systems and to shape them into sustainable human settlements.

We see the CSU M.A. in Environmental Studies as a highly ranked, regionally and nationally recognized program. We envision the degree program as attracting well-qualified students from the region's top undergraduate science and policy programs. We see a variety of internships in place where students will gain experience in policy, planning, management and analysis of environmental problems and in formulating policies and plans to manage sustainable development. We see graduates from the M.A. in Environmental Studies program placed in a wide range of work settings in the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

Curricular Goals
1. Students will have a core knowledge base in biology, environmental physics, and environmental engineering
2. Students will understand the institutional and organizational context in which environmental policies and decisions are made and implemented through law, regulation, and administrative and financial practices
3. Students will understand the processes of public policy decision making, including the links between scientific research and environmental policy and inter-organizational relationships
4. Students will be able to design a policy-based applied research project, collect and analyze scientific and other data using electronic technology, and pursue
 results using a variety of methods and techniques relevant for environmental policy and management;
5. Students will be able to specialize in public decision making-related domains positively affecting the environment

Internships and Assistantships

Internships and graduate assistantships are an important part of the MA Environmental Studies program. The Office of Student and Enrollment Services administers these two programs at the Levin College. They will be happy to speak with you about the requirements of our internships and about applying for a graduate assistantship.

Internships help students build skills, learn how environmental organizations operate, and often lead to full time positions once the student has completed the MA degree.

Organizations Hosting MA Environmental Studies Students
Earth Day Coalition, Cleveland
EcoCity Cleveland, Cleveland Ohio
Environmental Protection Agency, Twinsburg, OH

Graduate assistantships provide students and opportunity to work with college faculty or professional research staff on research projects across a variety of environmental topics.

Research Projects
EcoVillage Cleveland Indicator development
Economic and Fiscal Benefits of Watershed and Coastal Stewardship Practices

Career Opportunities

Students graduating with an environmental studies degree will develop skills currently high in demand in emerging domains. These skills are particularly suited to bridge the gap between science and policy. Students will become leaders in their communities’ efforts to protect, restore, and sustain environmental quality.

Environmental studies graduates work in organizations such as:

  • Environmental protection agencies at all government levels
  • Nonprofit environmental advocacy organizations
  • Environmental education organizations
  • Municipal government agencies
  • Regional planning and resource agencies
  • State and national parks and recreation areas
  • Private planning and environmental consulting firms
  • Law offices
  • Private industry
Contact Information

MAES Program Director: Dr. Sanda Kaufman

Prospective students please contact:
Kristen Blazek, Coordinator of Student Recruitment
Office of Student and Enrollment Services
Schedule a visit to Levin College.
Telephone: (216) 687-4506 / E-mail:

Current students please contact:
Dave Arrighi, Graduate Programs Coordinator
Office of Student and Enrollment Services

Telephone: (216) 523-7522 / E-mail:

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