The Department of Community Sustainability engages with colleagues, students, stakeholders and communities to address social choices within specific environmental, economic and cultural contexts that advance or conflict with sustainability goals.

Sustainability is about choices made within specific environmental, economic, social, and cultural contexts.  Sustainability scholarship involves creating, integrating and harnessing new knowledge to protect and improve social and natural systems and their interactions.  The Department of Community Sustainability (CSUS) is an interdisciplinary department that addresses contemporary issues of sustainability in agriculture, recreation, natural resources, and the environment. The Department of Community Sustainability (CSUS) was formerly called the Department of Community, Agriculture, Recreation, and Resource Studies (CARRS).

Consistent with its mission to assist in the development of sustainable communities, the department offers three undergraduate majors linked by a common core in community sustainability. These three majors - Environmental Studies and Sustainability (ESS); Sustainable Parks, Recreation and Tourism (SPRT); and Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Education (AFNRE) – share a set of courses centered on community sustainability. The CSUS graduate program offers two graduate majors: Community Sustainability (MS and PhD) and Sustainable Tourism and Protected Areas Management (MS and PhD). In both undergraduate and graduate programs, CSUS embraces international as well as domestic applications, engagement, and opportunities.


CSUS undergraduate programs are designed to educate scholars and practitioners who are able to create, integrate and harness new knowledge to protect and improve both social and natural systems.


CSUS offers three graduate degree programs to prepare scholar-activists interested in sustainability, recreation and tourism, food systems, agriculture education and international development for research, community engagement and knowledge production.

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  • Aug 6

    AFNRE MA Project Defense: Lindsey Garner

    August 6, 2020 10:00AM – 11:00AM Online

    Lindsey's project explores the implementation of intergroup dialogue within high school agriculture, food, and natural resources classrooms.

  • Aug 6

    PhD Dissertation Proposal Defense: Shubhechchha Sharma

    August 6, 2020 10:30AM – 11:30AM EST Online

    The goal of Shubhechchha's dissertation is to use resilience thinking and social-ecological systems framework to identify points of intervention in dryland systems to manage both present and future drought risks.

  • Aug 6

    AFNRE MA Project Defense: Connor Hubbard

    August 6, 2020 1:00PM – 2:00PM Online

    Connor's curriculum will allow Michigan agriculture, food and natural resources educators to embed state science standards into their work in with agricultural mechanics.

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