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Natural Resources A.A.S. Degree/Certificate

Career Description
People in the natural resource field often become involved with issues like biodiversity, environmental pollution, endangered species, and the future quality of human life.  To prepare for this field, students will gain the skills needed for assessing, implementing and evaluating land and water practices as part of an integrated wildlife program. Graduates in natural resources use their knowledge and develop skills in forestry, fisheries, wildlife, and parks and recreation. They have learned the identification of organisms, methods for collecting data, and resource management principles.

Program Information
The Natural Resource Program prepares students for work in the natural resource field by providing a well-rounded background of course work and the opportunity to work with specialists in the field through internships. Credits can be transferred to a four-year college with which we have special transfer agreements, including the University of Minnesota at Crookston and the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point.

Program Learning Outcomes
Graduates will be able to:
1. Demonstrate field identification of regionally important plants, mammals, birds and fish and their communities
2. Use a broad range of technological tools to research, document, map, measure, record and analyze data relevant to natural resources
3. Interpret how ecological relationships influence plants, mammals, birds and fish distribution, succession and biodiversity in ecosystems
4. Analyze land characteristics and create land management plans
5. Communicate in oral and written forms with supervisors, peers, area visitors and natural resource agencies
6. Navigate and safely function in an outdoor workplace

Special Program Requirements
This is generally an outdoor program with some physical activity, such as walking, hiking, and working in forests and streams. Most of our equipment is light, but fire training certification to fight fires requires a 3 mile walk with a 45 pound pack in 45 minutes.

Accreditation
We are part of the Minnesota State Colleges and University System and accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Transfer Opportunities
Students have the opportunity to transfer to colleges like University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point, WI and the University of Minnesota at Crookston, MN with this degree.

Career Titles
This program will help students prepare for a wide range of careers, including the following: forester, forestry technician, wildlife manager, wildlife technician, fisheries manager, fisheries technician, parks manager, parks technician, naturalist, hydrologist, soils scientist, non-game wildlife personnel, natural resource conservation personnel, biologist, and plant taxonomist.

Employment Opportunities
Employment opportunities include seasonal and part-time work and internships while in school. The best opportunities for full-time work will require a bachelor’s degree from a four-year university in one of the natural resource areas or from a more holistic natural resource management degree.

 


NATURAL RESOURCES A.A.S. CURRICULUM

First Year - Fall Semester
NATR 1112  Land Measurement(3cr)
NATR 1120  Dendrology (3cr)
NATR 1125  Ichthyology (3cr)
NATR 1200  Introduction to Natural Resources(3cr)
NATR 1280  Introduction to GPS & GIS (Arc View) (2cr)
General Education (1cr)
Total 15 Credits

Spring Semester
NATR 1115  Plant Taxonomy (2cr)
NATR 1130  Mammalogy (3cr)
NATR 1135  Ornithology (3cr)
NATR 1140  Limnology (3cr)
NATR 2170  Advanced GPS & GIS (2cr)
BIOL 2415  General Ecology (4cr) 
Total 17 Credits

Second Year - Fall Semester
NATR 2120*  Wetland Ecology (3cr)
NATR 2130*  Wildlife Management (3cr)
NATR 2155    Soil Science (3cr)
General Education (7cr)
Total 16 Credits

Spring Semester
NATR 2110   Herpetology (2cr)
NATR 2140* Fisheries Management (3cr)
NATR 2161* Ecosystem Management (2cr)
NATR 2201   Intro to Parks & Interpretation (2cr)
NATR 2235* Silviculture & Forest Management (3cr)
General Education (4cr)
Total 16 Credits

GRADUATION REQUIREMENT 64 CREDITS
*Denotes Prerequisites


WILDLIFE TOURISM CERTIFICATE CURRICULUM
Gainful Employment

Required Courses:

NATR 1130  Mammalogy (3cr)
NATR 1135  Ornithology (3cr)
NATR 1360  Animal Behavior (3cr)
NATR 2110  Herpetology (2cr)
NATR 2130  Wildlife Management (3cr)
NATR 2201  Intro to Parks & Interpretation (2cr)

Choose one (1) of the following:
SPCH 1410  Introduction to Communication Studies (3cr)
SPCH 1421  Interpersonal Communications (3cr)
SPCH 1431  Fundamentals of Public Speaking (3cr)
Total 19 Credits

GRADUATION REQUIREMENT 19 CREDITS

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Last Updated: 3/4/13