Ashland University Department of Music presents the Award-winning Ashland University... Read more
Meet with the Administrative Director Sarah M. Wells for an... Read more
Ashland University Department of Music presents the best of Spring... Read more

Department News

Faculty and Student Recognition at the 2014 Academic Honors Convocation

Professor Merrill Tawse , Professional Instructor of Biology, was recognized as the recipient of the 2014 Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award during the recent Academic... Read more

AU Chemistry Research is Recognized at the National ACS Meeting

Dr. Perry Corbin, Associate Professor of Chemistry, recently attended the 247th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society in Dallas with junior chemistry major William... Read more

Ashland Choose Ohio First Scholars volunteer at science entrepreneurship event

For the past five years students in Ashland University's Choose Ohio First Scholarship program have volunteered to register high school students, teachers and guest speakers... Read more

Faculty Spotlight

Dr. Patricia A. Saunders, associate professor of biology, joined the Ashland University faculty in 2002 and is the director of the University's Environmental Science Program... Read more

Support the Program

By donating any amount you're making a big difference in our department's future.

Environmental science is truly interdisciplinary.  Projects typically depend on collaboration among scientists and other professionals with different areas of expertise, and require  knowledge of  biology, chemistry and geology.  Environmental science majors at AU train in science fundamentals and national and global context, preparing students to take on new environmental problems. The Gulf oil spill; climate change; water resources management; emerging pests and invasive species; and the changing energy economy are a few examples of environmental issues where science is needed.

AU’s Environmental Science Program Attracts Students Who Excel!

“Within the past year [2012-2013] Ashland University students have received more Ohio environmental science and engineering scholarships of the $63,500 awarded from The Ohio Academy of Science and the Ohio Environmental Education Fund than students at any of the other 15 Ohio schools with students receiving scholarships.”  --Dr. Lynn Elfner, CEO, Ohio Academy of Science

Hands-On Classroom Experience and so much more...

Interdisciplinary preparation makes students competitive for off-campus summer internships, post-graduate jobs, graduate schools and professional schools. Each student has an experienced faculty advisor who assists with developing a program of study, including lots of options for upper-level courses, that will help each student prepare for specific career goals.

What You’ll Love About Environmental Science:

  • Personal attention from professors that would be impossible at a state university.
  • Professors who are committed to excellence in teaching.
  • Environmental Science courses that emphasize current issues and global and international perspectives, plus options for studying abroad.
  • Our new GIS course! (That’s GEOL/EVS 320 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems).
  • Options (as early as your freshman year!) to conduct in-depth research and skill-development with faculty who are experts in their disciplines and highly regarded scientists.
  • The opportunity to work in our five environmental preserves.  These are used by classes and for faculty-student directed research projects.  They are also important for our education and outreach programs.
  • Opportunities to meet and network with guest scientists and professionals informally before attending lectures in our Environmental Lecture Series and departmental seminar series.
  • A new 2,500 square foot greenhouse and expanded research facilities.
  • Working with state-of-the-art equipment in undergraduate labs and as research students.
  • **EVS minors: You can use your experience in science as preparation for interdisciplinary work in journalism, business, creative writing, arts, political science, etc.

Student Spotlight: Cassie Nix


Senior Cassie Nix is a Toxicology, Environmental Science and Biology triple major with a Chemistry minor.  Yes, she is super enthused about science!   She also is very active in campus life.  In addition to being an excellent student in the classroom and lab, Cassie has been active as the Ashland University Recycling Intern, a paid position that includes coordinating the campus recycling program, writing a monthly newsletter and active participation and leadership on the campus “Go Green” committee.   Cassie also works as a tutor to biology and chemistry students, is an AU Band Tombone Section Leader and she will be TriBeta president for 2013-2014! Read More

In Their Own Words

See what people are saying about our programs.
  • Karie Charlton, EVS ’11, Cuyahoga Valley National Park Educator
    Ashland University’s science programs have impressed me because hands-on lab experience began my first semester of my freshman year. And I like that the professors are in the lab with me for one-on-one interaction. I like the willingness of the professors to be hands-on and be available for help... more
  • Cassie Nix, EVS, Biology and Toxicology, '14
    The toxicology program at Ashland has given me an edge when applying to graduate schools- AU is one of ten institutions that offer toxicology as an undergraduate degree. Along with the unique toxicology major, Ashland offers a variety of other classes that I could tailor to my interests. A variety... more
  • Erin (Gagan) Allen, Toxicology '06; PhD, University of Iowa
    The Biology Department at AU provided me with the experience and tools necessary for me to be successful in graduate school through the individualized instruction and small class sizes, extensive practice preparing oral presentations, writing lab reports, and critiquing current literature. In... more
  • Brian Speer, '07; Operations Manager, Burleson Research Technologies
    My experience in the Environmental Science Program at Ashland University truly exemplified the motto of “Accent on the Individual.” I was not just another face in the crowd; my professors knew me by name and took a genuine interest in my education. The program also offered a wide range of classes... more
  • Audra Taylor, '07; MS in Ecology, University of Toledo, Animal Care Technician, Oatland Island Wildlife Center
    I loved my time in AU's EVS program, both for the outstanding faculty and the wide range of coursework. The diversity of the program has enabled me to explore various aspects of the biology/environmental career field - from lab and field research with Dr. Brauner, to my Master's work in spatial... more
  • Rachel Day, '11; MS in Environmental Science, Miami University of Ohio, Chemical Crew Leader, Midwest Biodiversity Institute
    The passion and dedication demonstrated by Ashland University's Biology Department faculty motivated me to pursue challenging courses and independent research. I have directly applied the laboratory skills gained from my coursework and research in both my graduate program and job. I will always... more
  • Brad Pickens. Environmental Science '00, M.S. Bowling Green State University '06, Ph.D. Louisiana State University '12, North Carolina State University Post-doc Researcher '13
    A major component of AU's Environmental Science Program is its interdisciplinary nature. As my research in wildlife and conservation biology has further developed into an expertise in wetland ecology, many of the classes and field experiences I had at AU have paid dividends. To fully understand... more