The field of Environmental Science and Engineering is a relatively young interdisciplinary field offered by a few schools. There aren’t a lot of online programs out there for the Doctors of Environmental Science and Engineering degree although similar degrees might allow you to take some courses partially.

Plastics and other pollutants are killing marine life. Indiscriminate and unlawful logging activities are thinning our forests. Human-made pollutants are contaminating the air. It’s clear that the planet is facing imminent destruction. With an in-depth study of the environment and the dynamics among the elements that make up the Earth, we keep damage at bay. Making significant contributions to solution-seeking efforts are scholars and researchers, many of whom are Doctors of Environmental Science and Engineering.

Table of Contents

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a Doctor of Environmental Science and Engineering (D.Env.) program mean?

A Doctor of Environmental Science and Engineering (D.Env.) degree is a professionally-oriented doctorate program aimed at providing diverse and practical solutions to environmental concerns. It focuses on training promising individuals who can deliver sustainable designs that protect our natural and cultural landscapes.

The D.Env. or “E.S.E.” program is the product of an interdisciplinary approach of academes from the sciences, engineering, business management, public policy, and law departments. Graduate students are expected to possess both the research skills of a scientist and the drive of engineers to create efficient systems.

In contrast to a Ph.D. program in Environmental Science and Engineering degree, the D.Env. program emphasizes the interactions between different sectors of society including the academe, business, politics, and public health. Ph.D. holders, on the other hand, focus on innovations in interdisciplinary research. In other words, the D.Env. program prepares students to become leaders most likely in a non-academic setting.

What sort of accreditation should I look for in a school?

The D.Env. program is relatively new, and no single national authority has awarded it accreditation. To be safe, you need to look for the status of the institution with the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Because the D.Env. program is related to Engineering, you also need to browse the list of accredited schools by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).

Another way to assess the reputation of an institution is to find out whether the faculty is associated with a professional organization. Affiliation with the National Association of Environmental Professionals (NAEP) signifies that your would-be professors are actively participating with the latest updates of the field.

How do I earn my D.Env. degree?

D.Env. degree applicants must have a master’s degree in the field of science or engineering. If you have a generalist master’s diploma in Public Health or Environmental Sciences, you can still be accepted as long as your transcript of records shows fitting subjects for the program. Additional course and laboratory work in Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics may be required along with your GRE scores.

The D.Env. program lasts for 4-5 years. During the first two years, students attend classroom and laboratory lectures. In the succeeding years called the “residency period,” graduate students write a dissertation with a professor. The graduate thesis is completed off-campus. Students are also required to work in an organization, a company, a public agency, a non-profit organization, or a consultancy group whose main efforts focus on saving the environment.

For now, the D.Env. program is still in the early stages, and only a few schools award this degree. Students are required to attend classes on-campus. Similar degrees provide a hybrid format for some students. It isn’t a 100% distance learning option, however, as graduate students still have to go on-campus because not all course materials are available online.

After dissertation defense, the institution awards the D.Env. degree. Many students land jobs in the organization they were working for.

What type of degree do I need to pursue research or educate others in Environmental Science and Engineering?

The D.Env. degree is an interdisciplinary program, so, any person with a Ph.D. or doctorate in the environmental sciences and engineering can teach in D.Env. schools. Because of the multifaceted nature of the discipline, D.Env. scholars have plenty of academic journals to choose from for publishing papers.

What kind of career and salary can I expect with my D.Env. degree?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an environmental engineer technician’s median annual salary is $50,230. At most, they make around $81,360 per year. If you have a Doctor of Environmental Science and Engineering degree under your belt, you will earn more.

As environmental sustainability becomes a trend and a necessity, the field of environmental science engineering is projected to grow 15% from 2012 to 2022. D.Env. graduates work in big firms and Fortune 500 companies as project leaders of projects. Usually, their role is to make companies “greener.”

Do I need a license to be an environmental engineer or scientist?

The D.Env. may be a professionally oriented doctorate, but there is no licensure exam you need to pass to be called an environmental scientist or engineer. However, your occupation before attending the D.Env. program may require a license. For example, as an engineer, you would have needed to obtain a license to practice.

Essentially, D.Env. is a high-level degree that unlocks doors of opportunities for higher offices in your dream company.

What schools offer the Doctor of Environmental Science and Engineering degree?

As of 2021, there are no schools in the United States offering online doctoral degree programs in Environmental Science and Engineering. However, for students who can earn their degree on campus, there are five exciting options available in the entire country which can be found at the University of California, Los Angeles; Harvard University in Cambridge, MA; the University of Texas at El Paso; the University of Texas at San Antonio; and the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, CA.

If you’re passionate about saving wildlife, humankind, and the Earth, get a doctorate degree that lets you do just that. Be a Doctor of Environmental Science and Engineering and put your expertise to good use!

Best Doctor of Engineering Schools

UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, LOS ANGELES

ucla

INSTITUTE OF THE ENVIRONMENT & SUSTAINABILITY

School Highlights: An incredibly well-respected school system, the University of California is known worldwide for its academic excellence. The Institute of the Environment & Sustainability at the Los Angeles campus offers an exceedingly rare Doctor of Environmental Science and Engineering that is perhaps the finest program of its kind in the entire nation. The coursework delves deeply into the intricacies of environmental studies and engineering and provides avenues to create approachable, real-world solutions to issues such as massive oil spills or reworking urban ecosystems. The comprehensive curriculum turns students into experts who go on to make positive impacts on the environment.

Coursework Sample:

  • Atmospheric Transport and Transformations of Airborne Chemicals
  • Environmental Economics
  • Issues and Methods in Environment and Sustainability

Campus Location: Los Angeles, CA

Accreditation:

  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges
    533 Airport Boulevard, Suite 200
    Burlingame, California 94010
    www.acswasc.org, (650) 696-1060

Acceptance Rate: 12% Retention Rate: 97% Graduation Rate: 91%

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, LOS ANGELES’ D. ENV DEGREE PROGRAM

HARVARD UNIVERSITY

harvard

Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

School Highlights: Harvard University is one of the most recognizable names in scholastic history, which supplies a superb Doctor of Philosophy curriculum in Environmental Science and Engineering. Students attending this premier institution of higher education take part in a learning atmosphere that exceeds all others. The coursework includes titles surrounding global warming, regional and local water and air pollution, stratospheric ozone reduction, and more. Alongside internationally renowned faculty members, they engage in high-quality research undertakings that have real-world outcomes. There are a vast number of exciting research areas available at Harvard, and the program allows students to create personalized approaches, as well.

Sampling of Research Areas:

  • Atmospheric Chemistry
  • Energy Resources and Energy Systems
  • Ice Dynamics and Sea Level

Campus Location: Cambridge, MA

Accreditation:

  • New England Commission of Higher Education
    3 Burlington Woods Drive, Suite 100
    Burlington, MA 01803
    www.neche.org, (781) 425-7785

Acceptance Rate: 5% Retention Rate: 97% Graduation Rate: 97%

LEARN MORE ABOUT HARVARD UNIVERSITY’S DOCTORATE IN ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT EL PASO

el paso

THE UTEP GRADUATE SCHOOL

School Highlights: The Ph.D. in Environmental Science and Engineering at this fine academic institution is an interdisciplinary degree that provides one exciting concentration in Energy Science & Engineering. The region surrounding El Paso creates a living laboratory for doctoral students since the border between Mexico, and the United States is one of the most environmentally impacted areas in the country. Working alongside the Center for Environmental Resource Management, as well as instructors and cohorts from multiple departments, students engage in a hugely diverse curricular experience that vastly enhances a multi-tiered understanding of global environmental issues.

Coursework Sample:

  • Environmental Law and Policy
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Interdisciplinary Environment Problem Solving

Campus Location: El Paso, TX

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois 60604
    www.hlcommission.com, (800) 621-7440

Acceptance Rate: 100% Retention Rate: 73% Graduation Rate: 37%

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT EL PASO’S PH.D. IN ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT SAN ANTONIO

san antonio

THE UTSA GRADUATE SCHOOL

School Highlights: The University of Texas System is obviously one of the most impressive in Environmental Science and Engineering since it is available on the San Antonio campus, as well! UT San Antonio’s degree is designed to give students highly advanced training in the most crucial research techniques and methods. There is a strong emphasis throughout the entire curriculum on natural resources, particularly land, water, and air resources. There are a huge number of applicable dissertation areas, all of which give students opportunities to work closely with a wide variety of departments and instructors at UTSA. The Department maintains a top-quality laboratory available to all students throughout their degree program.

Sampling of Research Areas:

  • Remediation
  • Contaminants
  • Air Pollution Control

Campus Location: San Antonio, TX

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
    230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
    Chicago, Illinois 60604
    www.hlcommission.com, (800) 621-7440

Acceptance Rate: 77% Retention Rate: 73% Graduation Rate: 35%

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT SAN ANTONIO’S DOCTOR OF ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING DEGREE

CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY

caltech

DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING

School Highlights: The California Institute of Technology is an extremely successful school that provides an esteemed Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Science and Engineering with a unique edge to the curriculum. Students choose two of the three coursework groupings listed below to concentrate their studies more toward individual goals. As a Ph.D. program, it is thesis-focused, of course, and also requires a culminating comprehensive examination. Caltech’s excellence is displayed quite clearly in its phenomenal retention and graduation rates below, both of which are nearly perfect. It is also a highly competitive school according to the acceptance rate.

Coursework Concentrations:

  • Environmental Biology
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Environmental Physics

Campus Location: Pasadena, CA

Accreditation:

  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges
    533 Airport Boulevard, Suite 200
    Burlingame, California 94010
    www.acswasc.org, (650) 696-1060

Acceptance Rate: 6% Retention Rate: 98% Graduation Rate: 93%

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY’S ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY DEGREE