The Center for Sustainability & the Environment seeks to enable scholarship and learning that advances and applies understandings of natural systems and human-nature relationships.

Strategic goals:
To conduct and support theoretical and applied scholarship.
To foster interdisciplinary teaching and learning.
To encourage innovation, diverse perspectives, and creativity across the university.
To collaborate with communities and partner organizations.   
To prioritize, pursue, and allocate resources effectively

Brief history: The Center for Sustainability & the Environment was created as the University's Environmental Center in 2005 with support from about 50 faculty and staff from across the university and from students, who helped to define areas of interest. Activities began to develop around two themes: campus greening and the Susquehanna River.  In subsequent months a third initiative focused on environmental humanities.  

From the beginning, the Center sought to create a university-wide platform capable of supporting collaborative, interdisciplinary scholarship, teaching, and outreach, situating Bucknell as a national leader in applied research and teaching on 21st-century environmental and sustainability issues.  

During its first decade, the Center achieved important milestones, including: the 2006 Bucknell University Barry R. Maxwell Award for exceptional collaborative efforts; the university's Comprehensive Environmental Assessment; the 2010 State of the Susquehanna River report; the Environmental Humanities Summer Writers Institute in 2009, 2010, and 2013; and development of the current interdisciplinary Renewable Energy Scholars program.

The Center has received significant external grant support from the Henry Luce Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Chesapeake Conservancy and the Degenstein Foundation. It features three standing programs: Watershed Sciences and Engineering, Sustainable Design, and Place Studies. Each actively engages with students, faculty, and staff to conduct and support scholarly work, create teaching and learning opportunities, and maintain connections with partner organizations and communities. 

A sample of the Center's high-impact work includes:

  • Undergraduate research: During summer 2015 the Center supported 18 projects by students representing 13 different majors.
  • Annual Susquehanna River Symposium, now in its tenth year, features oral and poster presentations as it brings together scholars, professionals, and conservation groups to discuss research and projects.
  • Annual Sustainability Symposium now in its fourth year, features faculty/staff panels and posters, demonstrations, and speakers that focus on sustainability themes.