Have an interest in chemistry and physics? Want to restore and protect the planet’s land and water resources? Then get your feet wet and your hands dirty in the Environmental Assessment and Restoration program.

 

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Overview

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From the melting of the polar ice caps to the disappearing of the world’s wilderness, restoration and reclamation of the environment have become crucial to our way of life.

Our two-year Environmental Assessment and Restoration program will put you at the forefront of saving our planet.

You’ll be getting your feet wet and your hands dirty in this practical, hands-on program, which focuses on soil and water. Through a unique mix of science, law and technology, you’ll learn how to restore the resources our world depends on, improve water quality and reclaim abandoned industrial sites.

What you learn in the classroom will be reinforced with practical application during hands-on labs and fieldtrips that take you out into your future office – nature. We’ll train you in using the latest techniques and applications, enhancing your employability and setting you up for success. Plus, if you want to further your education, you’ll be able to ladder directly into year three of our Ecosystem Management – Bachelor of Applied Science degree.

The race to save our planet is on. Be at the forefront with a diploma in Environmental Assessment and Restoration – apply today!

Career opportunities

When you graduate, you’ll have a comprehensive grounding in law, technical skills and science that will put you in high demand for positions such as:

  • environmental technologist
  • soil quality technologist
  • water survey technologist
  • watershed management coordinator
  • environmental investigator
  • water quality technologist
  • environmental assessment officer
  • environmental compliance officer
  • pollution prevention officer
  • reclamation technician
Starts In: September
Status: Now accepting applications.
Next Intake: Fall (September) 2018
Application Deadlines:

  • Domestic for Fall 2018: September 4, 2018
  • International for Fall 2018: June 1, 2018

For a full list of dates and deadlines, click here.

Duration: 2 years
Credential: Diploma
Transfers:

  • Lethbridge College
  • University of Lethbridge
  • University of Alberta
  • Lakeland College
  • Athabasca University
  • NAIT
  • University of Calgary
  • Royal Roads University
  • Griffith University (Australia)

Delivery Format
Classroom
Learning Environment

Special note about field studies: Students are off campus completing field studies during most of September and April. Due to scheduling conflicts, it is extremely difficult to take Year 1 and Year 2 courses simultaneously.

Students are advised to complete all Year 1 courses before proceeding to Year 2, and all Year 2 courses before enrolling in Year 3 courses (for related post-diploma certificate or degree programs). In the Fall term, field studies are scheduled in September, while in the Winter term, field studies are scheduled in April. Field studies schedules are dependent on many variables and may require students to participate on weekends or on statutory holidays. All program field studies are mandatory.

Students will be expected to complete non-credit environmental field techniques courses as part of the requirement to complete the program. Courses such as bear safety, firearms safety, pleasure craft operator’s card and boat operations will occur as part of field trip season activities. Students will be responsible for the fees associated with these courses. Prior valid training possessed by students will be considered for recognition.

Year 1 Term I
Course Code Course Name Credits
BIO-1167
3.00
CHM-1155
3.00
LAW-1150
3.00
RRM-1197
3.00
STS-1155
3.00

The following courses include a field study component:

  • BIO-1167 Botany
  • RRM-1197 Spatial Information Techniques
Year 1 Term II
Course Code Course Name Credits
BIO-1170
3.00
BIO-1172
3.00
ENG-1155
3.00
GEO-1166
3.00
LAW-1164
3.00

The following courses include a field study component:

  • BIO-1170 Plant Systematics
  • BIO-1172 Ecology
  • GEO-1166 Physical Geography
Year 2 Term I
Course Code Course Name Credits
CHM-2255
3.00
GEO-1165
3.00
RRM-2252
3.00
RRM-2253
3.00
RRM-2256
3.00

The following courses include a field study component:

  • RRM-2252 Water Resources
  • RRM-2253 Soil Resources
  • RRM-2256 Rangeland Management
Year 2 Term II
Course Code Course Name Credits
AGR-2266
3.00
ENV-2280
3.00
ENV-2290
3.00
RRM-2264
3.00
RRM-2295
3.00

The following courses include a field study component:

  • ENV-2280 Contaminant Management
  • ENV-2290 Site Restoration
  • RRM-2264 Forest Management
  • RRM-2295 Hydrogeology

Admissions

New students are accepted into the Environmental Assessment and Restoration two-year diploma program for the Fall term (September) only.

General admission requirements

All applicants must meet the general admission requirements for Lethbridge College programs as indicated in the Admissions section of this calendar.

Academic requirements

In addition to meeting the general admission requirements indicated in the Admissions section of this calendar, applicants to this program must also satisfy the following specific course requirements (or equivalencies):

  • Grade 12 Math (equivalent to Alberta’s Math 30-2 or a higher level math)
  • Grade 11 Biology
  • Grade 11 Chemistry

Basic computer literacy in the use of the internet, email, word processing and fundamental processes of spreadsheets is required for the student to be successful in this program. Students lacking these skills are strongly urged to complete a basic computer literacy course prior to entering this program.

Employers often require that students hold a valid Standard First Aid or Wilderness First Aid Certificate and/or a CPR Certificate to be eligible for seasonal and/or permanent employment. Students are encouraged to obtain these certificates either prior to entering the program or during the first year.

Supplies for field studies

Students on field studies are expected to provide their own equipment and supplies. This includes:

  • warm sleeping bag
  • ground sheet and pad
  • tent may be required (notification will be given at orientation)
  • back pack for gear
  • adequate clothing for cold/wet weather
  • hiking boots
  • work gloves
  • cooking and eating gear (may be shared)
  • food
  • binoculars
  • digital camera (standard feature)
  • orienteering compass
  • chest waders
  • field equipment vest (recommended)
  • “write-in-the-rain” treated field notebook/surveyors book
  • water bottle
  • sunscreen
  • CSA-approved steel-toed safety boots (second year)
  • safety glasses (also used in labs)
  • 30 cm metric steel ruler

Other required supplies

Available from Lethbridge College Bookstore:

  • lab coat
  • safety glasses
  • Douglas protractor
  • “write-in-the-rain” field notebook/surveyors book
  • 16X hand lens
  • dissection kit
  • metric triangular scale with 1:20, 1:25, 1:50, 1:75, 1:100 and 1:125 graduations

Available from sporting, hardware and office supply stores:

  • Nexus Type 115 or Silva Ranger compass (with declination adjustment screw)
  • clipboard
  • 4 GB or higher USB memory stick
  • chest waders
  • scientific calculator ($15-$30 range)
  • 12 or more coloured pencils (pencil crayons)
  • binoculars (8X40 or 10X50 magnification)
  • 30 cm metric steel ruler

For additional information concerning lab or field equipment, contact the lab coordinator at 403-320-3202, Extension 5594.

Prior learning assessment (PLA)

If you have experience working in this field of study, you may be eligible for prior learning assessment.


Applicants who lack the required academic admission requirements can apply to the College and University Preparation program to upgrade their academic skills.

Academic Year Tuition Fees Books & Supplies
Year 1 $3,689.00 $1,026.00 $2,169.00
Year 2 $4,626.00 $1,426.00 $1,006.00

Our Budget Wizard is a free self-service tool that can help you make sense of your finances and the cost of your education. Give it a try!

Budget Wizard

  • Students will be charged a medical/dental benefit fee unless they opt out by demonstrating alternative coverage prior to the end of the first week of class.
  • International students are charged three times the tuition fee of their particular program and the same (other) fees as domestic students.
  • Costs for supplies may vary considerably depending on what students already have or where they purchased their supplies; cost provided is on the moderately high end.

Learn by doing

You'll have your feet on the soil and your hands in the water, exploring, learning and gaining skills that simply cannot be acquired in the classroom.

Out in the wilderness, far from the classroom – that’s where our environmental science students are during field trip season. We provide opportunities for hands-on learning in the field, quite literally. Our location is an ideal gateway to diverse ecosystems. To the west lay the foothills, the Rocky Mountains and Waterton Lakes National Park. To the east lay the Badlands, and all around us, the prairies.

As a student in one of our environmental science programs, you’ll get to experience it all. You’ll have your feet on the soil and your hands in the water, exploring, learning and gaining skills that simply cannot be acquired in the classroom.

When you’re preparing for a career in environmental science, it’s not enough to read from a textbook or stare at a screen. It’s something you need to do. And at Lethbridge College, you’ll get that opportunity.

Hands-on, immersive learning

Fully renovated, fully equipped
Fully renovated, fully equipped

Use research-grade equipment in the Cousins Science Centre.

Fully renovated, fully equipped

Fully renovated in 2007 to remain on the cutting edge of technology and equipment developments for years to come, the Cousins Science Centre houses a level of equipment seldom seen at the college or undergraduate level. Students in our environmental sciences and agriculture sciences programs use research-grade labs and equipment, meaning the researchers of tomorrow learn while using the same equipment they’ll use later in their careers. And yes, you almost do have to be a rocket scientist to understand just what our labs contain, including:

  • a mass spectrometer
  • an atomic absorption spectrophotometer
  • infrared autoanalyzers
  • photo-ionization devices
  • and so much more

The building contains 13 labs, eight of which are multifunctional and flexible, and its air system utilizes 33 fume hoods that create negative pressure within the labs for increased safety. The Cousins Science Centre features:

  • three chemistry labs
  • two botany labs with diurnal growth chambers
  • two zoology labs
  • a physics lab
  • a necropsy lab
  • a flume lab
  • a soils room
  • a microbiology suite with two labs and accompanying facilities
  • the Hubbard Wildlife Collection

A hub of collaboration

The Cousins Science Centre isn’t just a state-of-the-art building to study in – it’s a hub of collaboration and hands-on learning. It connects us with all of the other resources we share with industry across southern Alberta, meaning your education is relevant for the workforce of tomorrow. And it’s the starting point of all the field trips and producer visits that you’ll go on as a student in either our Agriculture or Environmental Sciences programs.

Get up close and personal
Get up close and personal

…with some of the most diverse residents of the province.

Get up close and personal

No, we’re not about to put you face-to-face with a live grizzly bear or cougar as part of an identification course, but you will be able to get up close and personal with the full body taxidermy versions.

Lethbridge College is home to one of Canada’s largest collections of full body taxidermy mammals, most of which are native to Alberta. Donated by the family of Alfred Hubbard, the collection provides our students with a 360-degree view of over 100 specimens, including:

  • grizzly
  • cougar
  • bison
  • bobcat
  • pronghorn
  • mountain goat
  • deer
  • wolf
  • black bear
  • badger
  • silver fox
  • lynx
  • several birds of prey

Rather than staring at one image on a page in a textbook, you’ll be able to examine an actual specimen from all angles. It’s a far more engaging way to learn about species and, in our opinion, a far more memorable experience.

Learn from those who have been there, done that

Our environmental science instructors have been there, done that and want you to follow in their footsteps. They have extensive experience and expertise to share, and students aren’t the only ones seeking out their knowledge.

The team for Bushnell’s Trigger Effect, a hunting and fishing show, have also sought out their expertise, specifically creating the Conservation Connection segment on the show to feature our instructors. These experts, who could one day be your instructors, talk on a wide variety of issues related to hunting, conservation, habitat, endangered species, enforcement, fisheries and more. The segment adds aneducational element unique to hunting shows and illustrates the extensive knowledge of our instructors and what we’re teaching here at Lethbridge College.

Catch our instructors on the latest season of Bushnell’s Trigger Effect or, better yet, catch them in the classroom.

The “Godfather” of our Environmental Sciences program

Buck Cunningham built the college’s widely-respected Environmental Sciences program. Kerry Edwards (Renewable Resource Management 1983), a Conservation Enforcement/Natural Resource Compliance instructor, recalls meeting Cunningham when he first came to campus as a student. “He interviewed every student who came in the door,” Edwards says. “He wanted to make sure the student was the right fit for the program. And he had hired an amazing staff. They were all well-educated and experts in their fields. He had a vision to have this be the best Environmental Sciences program in the country. He definitely laid the foundation for a very strong program.”

From here to there: alumni updates

Lethbridge College isn’t just a place to go to school – we’re a community that is here to support you from your initial interest in our program through to the moment you cross the stage at Convocation and beyond. Just take a look at where an LC education has taken some of our grads.

Tyler Riewe

“I took a lot of my skills and knowledge from Lethbridge College, and I think it has served me very well in fulfilling all of my duties as a professional and an environmental steward. I have gained a great deal of confidence with giving public presentations, interfacing with clients and regulators, and operating at a level that aligns with the professional standards. I know that my experience at school and the early days in my career were what really solidified my interest in this industry and assured me that I can make a positive difference.”

Kirk M. Elliott

Kirk started working at Trace Associates in 2007 as an Environmental Scientist. He is the team leader and project manager for two large upstream oil and gas reclamation programs, consisting of approximately 200 sites. Darrell J.I. Haight, president of the company, says the company has hired many Lethbridge College grads, but Kirk has been with the company the longest. He also noted that Kirk has been nominated for and won a number of safety and other awards, including employee of the month, the annual president’s award, and safety and leadership awards. “When we want to teach someone how to do something right, we have them go and talk to Kirk and find out how he takes care of things. He’s the benchmark in our company for getting back to clients and colleagues.”

– From Winter 2014 Wider Horizons

Sharon (Luney) Smit

“The program at Lethbridge College has offered a lot of opportunities for me to work for the provincial and federal governments as well as private industry. I started with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and worked in an arctic research station (Fresh Water Institute) in Winnipeg. I’ve worked for the Department of Natural Resources and the Canadian Wildlife Service. I’ve also worked as a private consultant to environmental consulting companies. For the last 10 years, I have worked for environmental analytical labs.”

– From Fall 2011 Wider Horizons

Kayla Hellawell

Kayla and her husband, Josh, were recognized as two of the Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce's Top 40 Under 40 for their dedication to the environment and work within the community. The Hellawells are the owners of Synergy Permaculture, a company that specializes in permaculture design, water management, green waste management, and urban farming. They grow organic, chemical-free produce using sustainable growing practices and local inputs such as composted manure from local stables and compost tea sprayings, and they are strong proponents of urban farming.

– From Fall 2016 Wider Horizons

Success stories

Cousins Building: An inside look

Take a look at your future classrooms with the videos below.