Jul 14, 2024  
2024-25 Western Washington University Catalog 
2024-25 Western Washington University Catalog

Environmental Justice Minor

Department of Environmental Studies, College of the Environment

19 credits


The Environmental Justice Minor offers opportunities to critically interrogate the relationships between power, privilege, and the environment. Environmental justice, both a field of academic inquiry and a social movement, brings to light injustices related to the uneven distribution of environmental hazards, the consistent failure of environmental decision-making to address adequately the needs of marginalized communities, and the skewed representation of environmental issues in government and mainstream society. The minor provides an educational experience that offers critical and deconstructive approach by challenging dominant paradigms in human-environment studies and analyzing the underlying structural causes of environmental injustice. The program also embraces reconstructive and praxis approaches by providing opportunities for application and community collaboration.

Why Consider an Environmental Justice Minor?

This minor provides space for students who wish to bridge interests in the environment and social justice. It allows students to connect the theoretical insights they are learning in class to practical applications. This minor is appropriate for students with a background in the environment who wish to deepen their understanding of connections to social justice, for students with a background in social justice who wish to deepen their understanding of connections to the environment, and for students with little background in either the environment or social justice.

 Contact Information

Minor Coordinator
Kate J. Darby
Arntzen Hall 209

College of the Environment
Professional Advisor

Kathryn Patrick 
Environmental Studies 539

Department Chair
Rebekah Paci-Green
Arntzen Hall 206

 Sample Careers


 Major/Career Resources


How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process):

Applicants should submit the following to Kate Darby at darbyk@wwu.edu: a WWU transcript, a WWU transfer equivalency report (if applicable), and a 500-word essay explaining how the minor would enhance the applicant’s experiences at WWU. Applications are due by October 15 and May 15. Because enrollment space may be limited, we recommend applying during fall quarter. 

Grade Requirements

A grade of C- or better is required for a student’s major or minor courses, and supporting courses for majors and minors.


Core Courses (11 credits)

Students enrolled in the Environmental Justice Minor are not necessarily given registration priority for classes outside of the Environmental Studies department.

Additional Courses (8 credits minimum)

Work with your Environmental Justice minor faculty advisor to select additional environmental justice-related courses to bring your total minor credits to a minimum of 19. Please keep an eye on our program website at wp.wwu.edu/ejatwestern/academic-programs/environmental-justice-minor for class suggestions. Additional courses may be used with faculty approval.