Jul 12, 2024  
2024-25 Western Washington University Catalog 
2024-25 Western Washington University Catalog

Natural Resource Management (Extension), BA

Location(s): WWU - Everett, WWU - Port Angeles, WWU - Poulsbo

Department of Urban and Environmental Planning and Policy, College of the Environment - Salish Sea Region

62-70 credits


WWU College of the Environment - Salish Sea Region (CENV-SSR) is a distance-based network of instructional hubs that allows students to learn alongside world-famous researchers located in Poulsbo, Port Angeles, and Everett, Washington. Freshman and sophomore students in regional community colleges can use the “Direct Transfer Agreement” (DTA) pathway to transition their associate degree into an CENV-SSR bachelor’s degree. At CENV-SSR, students take upper-level courses to complete their bachelor’s degrees. To optimize convenience for working students, SSR classes are scheduled from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Class delivery uses hybrid modality - combining in-person teaching, hands-on field labs, and interactive video conferencing.

This major uses a holistic, interdisciplinary approach to understanding urban-environment systems and environmental challenges, modeled on the College of the Environment’s curricula. Academic programming includes classes in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. It also integrates educational coursework, faculty-student collaboration, applied research, professional internships, and community service. This is designed to prepare tomorrow’s interdisciplinary problem solvers.

The Natural Resource Management (Extension) BA degree will provide entry-level working professionals with the real-world, interdisciplinary skills and knowledge needed for careers in natural resource and environmental management. Through academic coursework, internships and mentorships with environmental organizations, and experiential capstones, students will develop knowledge of core natural resource and environmental management, planning, and leadership concepts while acquiring hands-on experience with real-life case studies directly related to their professional interests.

Students will receive in-depth training in critical thinking about practices and policies, planning skills, communication in institutional and group settings, policy analysis, economic frameworks, and the science of the natural world, leadership development, program planning management, economic and policy analysis, and conservation science and management. The two emphasis areas allow students to focus their studies on their academic interests and employment market needs. The two emphases in natural resources, and in planning and resource management allows students to meet employment opportunities in municipal and regional planning, and environmental departments of various levels of government.

Why Consider a Natural Resources Management (Extension) Major?

Do you want to make a difference in protecting the environment and the public good, as well as diversify access to resources for everyone? WWU’S College of the Environment’s BA degree in Natural Resource Management focuses on the policies and practices that make that happen. The program focuses on resource sustainability and environmental resilience, while at the same time querying positionalities and cultural-economic lenses around resource access in diverse populations and landscapes. 

The program focuses on problem solving and implementing shared visions to effect laws and policies that monitor and manage environmental and climate change. Such laws and policies protect diverse, culturally appropriate, health-driven, economically viable landscapes — in the United States and throughout the world. We are proud to offer this degree to our students and to continue our program’s strong community partnerships, worldwide, in which students apply their learning to assist communities in organizing for sustainable futures.

About the Program

This major emphasizes an interdisciplinary approach to addressing urban problems facing communities. Students learn how to work with stakeholders on issues of environmental disturbances, pollution sites, habitat protection, green spaces, and natural resources. Students can choose an emphasis: Natural Resource Policy or Environmental and Natural Resource Management. With sustainability and climate change on the forefront of humanity’s greatest social and ethical problems, students studying natural resource management will acquire knowledge on “how” government works, and how to be most effect in solving global issues. This program prepares students with the knowledge and skills needed to negotiate social and bureaucratic institutions that govern the environmental-cultural interface.  

 Contact Information

Department Chair
Nabil Kamel
Western Washington University
516 High Street
​Bellingham, WA 98225
Arntzen Hall 230

Academic Program Director for
College of the Environment
- Salish Sea Region

Jenise M. Bauman
Western Washington University
1000 Olympic College Way
Poulsbo, WA 98370

Academic Program Manager for
College of the Environment
- Salish Sea Region

Ansu John
Western Washington University
1000 Olympic College Way
Poulsbo, WA 98370

 Sample Careers

Sustainable Development Consultant | Natural Resources Manager | Non-Profit Manager| Environmental Attorney| City Administrator | Resource Manager | Environmental Manager | Tribal Environmental Manager | Environmental Policy Administrator

 Major/Career Resources


How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process):

Applicants are instructed to complete an associate degree with a “Direct Transfer Agreement” (DTA) from the Washington State community college that the student is currently attending. College of the Environment - Salish Sea Region works with advisors/faculty at these community colleges to advise students to take preparatory classes during their first and second year. Once students have completed, or are completing, the associate degree with DTA, to include required pre-requisites for the Natural Resources Management major, students may apply to transfer into the College of the Environment - Salish Sea Region program.

Community College equivalent courses of ECON 206 or ECON 207, MATH 240, PLSC 250, or ENVS 204 must be complete with a C- or better for application to this major. ENVS 204 will be offered within the program.

Questions, contact cenvssr@wwu.edu.

A pre-advising session should be scheduled with cenvssr@wwu.edu to determine readiness for application.

Formal application is made to Western Washington University through the Admissions Office online application process. Once admitted, students will work with a College of the Environment - Salish Sea Region program advisor to select a depth and specialization area by the end of the first fall quarter. 

Outline for Application Process:

  • Make a note of the application deadline(s) for Fall Quarter admission.
    • Financial Aid Priority Deadline: January 31
    • Priority Application Deadline: March 1
    • Final Application Deadline: June 1
  • Apply for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at fafsa.ed.gov; WWU School Code 003802
  • Schedule a pre-advising appointment with cenvssr@wwu.edu to determine readiness for the application.
  • Complete both the Transfer & Post-baccalaureate for Location Program Admission application and the College of the Environment – Salish Sea Region application and submit the $60 application fee by visiting admissions.wwu.edu/apply/location-programs.
  • Request an official transcript from institutions where you have earned prior college credit. If you previously attended WWU, it is not necessary to provide WWU transcripts or other transcripts previously submitted to WWU. Have the official transcript sent electronically or in a sealed envelope to:

Western Washington University Office of Admissions
Old Main 200, MS 9009 516 High Street
Bellingham, WA 98225

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.


Natural Resource Foundations Courses (15-17 credits)

Natural Resource Experiential (minimum 5 credits)

❑ Choose any combination from the list below to complete at least 5 credits:

Emphases (22 credits)

Choose one emphasis from the two listed below; or with faculty advisor approval of a minimum 22 credits of any combination of courses or electives that form a cohesive emphasis.