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UMass Dartmouth Launches Online Graduate Certificate Program in Environmental Policy

Program will prepare professionals to excel in a world driven by an emerging green economy

Just in time for Earth Day and as building the green economy rises to the top of the national and state policy agenda, UMass Dartmouth this week launched a new online Environmental Policy Graduate Certificate program. By delivering the program online, the university is making eliminating the geographical and time barriers that so often keep professionals from entering graduate programs.

"State and national environmental affairs agendas are changing the way we govern ourselves as communities, a Commonwealth and nation, and they are changing the way we do business,'' said Department of Public Policy Chairman Clyde Barrow. "This program will position students to excel in this new and exciting field where achieving balance between economic and environmental imperatives will be a high priority."

"UMass Dartmouth considers online learning an important part of our offerings as it breaks down the barriers of time and location that too often stop people from pursuing advanced degrees,'' said Dr. Joy McGuirl-Hadley, Assistant to the Chancellor for Professional and Continuing Education.  "Online learning brings professionals and students from around the world together in a virtual classroom for just-in-time learning -- anywhere, any time."

The program is offered by the Department of Public Policy and the university's new College of Education, Public Policy and Civic Engagement via the Division of Professional and Continuing Education. The Certificate in Environmental Policy offers professionals an opportunity to achieve advanced knowledge and certification in the formulation and implementation of policies that achieve sustainable operations.

The goals of the program are to:
* Provide an understanding of the major ecological issues,
* Develop students' critical thinking and problem-solving skills with an emphasis on policy analysis, and
* Foster the development and implementation of environmentally sound policies and practices.

Successful completion of the certificate will enhance a student's current career or aid in the development of new job skills. Successful completion of the program is also a substantial positive consideration for students who subsequently apply to the full Master's in Public Policy program. Courses completed with an average GPA of 3.0 or better in the Certificate will count toward the Master's degree.

This Certificate in Environmental Policy joins the Women's Studies Minor, Sustainability Minor, and RN to BS Nursing Option in the university's growing portfolio of online learning opportunities.

For more information, visit the Division of Professional and Continuing Education online programs at

Author:  "John Hoey"
Date:  22-Apr-2009
Department:   School of Education, Public Policy and Civic Engagement

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