News Release
Fourth year Bachelor of Ecosystem Management students take part in a bird-banding field trip.

Lethbridge College’s Bachelor of Ecosystem Management degree program is the perfect pathway for students interested in fulfilling careers, pursuing professional designations or attaining further post-secondary education while creating a career focused on the outdoors.

The program’s name change – from Ecosystem Management – Bachelor of Applied Science to Bachelor of Ecosystem Management – has been approved by the Government of Alberta. The program hasn’t changed, but the new name is intended to clarify the many outcomes the program has provided over its first five years and into the future.

Fourth year Bachelor of Ecosystem Management students take part in a bird-banding field trip.

“Bachelor of Ecosystem Management really shows the depth and breadth of this degree program,” says Dr. Terry Kowalchuk, Dean of the Centre for Technology, Environment and Design. “Its previous name led some to believe it was an applied degree; however, this is a full baccalaureate degree that allows many options for graduates. From pursuing graduate degrees to attaining Professional Agrologist or Professional Biologist designations, the Bachelor of Ecosystem Management program allows graduates to follow wherever their aspirations lead them.”

A photo taken by former Bachelor of Ecosystem Management student Cayden Olstad. Olstad says: “This photo is one of many taken in Glacier National Park, Montana, on a Mammalogy field trip, one of the most memorable trips of my college career. This trip gave our class a chance to bond while camping in Montana and doing what we love in the outdoors.”

The Bachelor of Ecosystem Management program is the only program of its kind offered in western Canada. The program has an applied focus through the first two years, as students complete a diploma in either Environmental Assessment and Restoration, or Renewable Resource Management. The second two years continue to deliver a hands-on focus and work-integrated learning opportunities but also expands students’ knowledge through classes in humanities and social sciences such as policy, economics, and ethics. The program culminates in a capstone learning and research experience that tests students’ skills in the forests, mountains and grasslands that will one day be their workplace.

“We have worked with our industry partners, faculty, students and professional regulatory organizations to develop and maintain a unique and desirable program for our students,” says Brad Taylor, chair of the School of Environmental Sciences. “We have had graduates of this program go on to graduate studies and earn professional designations. We are always working to ensure our program meets the needs of the remediation, restoration and fish and wildlife management sectors and produce graduates who are ready to make a difference.”

A photo taken by former Bachelor of Ecosystem Management student Connor Frizzley. Frizzley shot this photo at the McIntyre Ranch on a Rangeland Management field trip in September 2017 during the Kenow wildfire. “It captures the underappreciated beauty of a native grassland and shows the power of mother nature – and also one of the many amazing places environmental science students at Lethbridge College get to call our classroom.”

Graduates of the Bachelor of Ecosystem Management program are prepared to enter in-demand careers. The Environmental Assessment and Restoration path is agrology focused and prepares students to be a part of Alberta’s increased focus on the remediation and restoration of industrial sites such as abandoned oil and gas wells, while the Renewable Resource Management pathway’s focus on biology leads to a variety of opportunities in fish and wildlife management.

“The courses and hands-on experience I received in the Ecosystem Management program were extremely beneficial in transitioning into my career and provided me with the credentials to obtain a Professional Biologist designation,” says Mike Kelly, a 2017 graduate of the program who is now an environmental consultant with BearTracks Environmental Services. “This name change should remove any ambiguity as to what the degree program is, and it will likely benefit future graduates of the program as they pursue their careers or postgraduate studies.”

Applications for the Bachelor of Ecosystem Management, Environmental Assessment and Restoration, and Renewable Resource Management programs are open now. Learn more about applying to Lethbridge College on the college’s website.