Where will graduate school take you?

Where will graduate school take you?

Earn a masters degree designed for the 21st century professional – become a change agent for global sustainability.

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Diverse students

Don’t quit your job!

Earn an environmental masters degree without sacrificing your personal or professional time and commitments. Join Virginia Tech.

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Lowaeli Damalu Graduates

Online natural resources student travels around the world to attend commencement

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TJ Franklin, XMNR
TJ Franklin – Preparing for Transition to Civilian Life
Although not retiring his military apparel just yet, Thomas (TJ) Franklin, current Executive Master of Natural Resources (XMNR) student, is…
Zach Hoffmann and his dog Zahara
The Mutual Benefits of Managed Fisheries and Marine Protected Areas
Overfishing is becoming a focus-issue among marine conservationists in light of food security challenges and economic trends. Zach Hoffman, a…
Mark Wieder
Why I Went Back to School for a Second Graduate Degree
Are you currently facing the tough decision of whether or not to pursue a professional level degree, or are you…
Rebecca Lamphear and classmates in India for their International Field Experience in January 2015
My Glimpse at Different Conservation Solutions in India
As I arrived at the airport and prepared to meet my classmates from the Online Master of Natural Resources program…
Moroccan Tea
Having Tea in a Casablanca Slum
"Casablanca is a city of glaring social inequalities, where the rich live alongside the poor. It is a city of…
Hugo in Morocco
How the XMNR is Preparing Me to be a Global Leader
On January 7th, two Muslim extremists attacked Charlie Hebdo, a satiric newspaper in Paris, carrying out an act that shocked…
RE.invest Report Cover
Growing Resilient Infrastructure
With global pressures from rising sea levels and expanding urban centers, resilient infrastructure is a proactive solution to protecting vulnerable…
Leading the Way from Forests to Faucets
Forests improve our drinking water: nearly 75 percent of the Northeast and Midwest region’s population relies on forests to reduce…
sustainable food
Navigating the World of Food
Virginia Tech’s Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability (CLiGS) offers a variety of professional development and education programs that generate…
Darin Liston is an affiliate at the Virginia Tech Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability and an alumnus of the Executive Master of Natural Resources (XMNR) program.
Be the Example You Want to See
Wanting to break out of his Navy mold, Darin Liston pondered his next move. “I thought natural resources was a…
Mandy Chesnutt
A Different Facet of “On-the-Ground”
“Working on what you care about makes work so much more interesting and fulfilling,” says Mandy Chesnutt, an alumna of…
Robert Cox, an Online Master of Natural Resources alumnus, met with scientists and curriculum developers at the Wash Woods Environmental Education Center to have his graduate capstone research developed into new science curriculum for Virginia students across the state.
From Capstone to Curriculum
Did you know that invasive feral pigs have been reported in at least 40 of the 50 states? This past…
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Latest News from the Director's Blog

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Identity. Hah! What is it Good For? Absolutely Something.
I, like many others I know, are struggling to make sense of the what appears to be an inexorable slide towards a viciously divided USA, driven, it seems, in large part by identity politics pitting a version of ethnonationalism against a version of cosmopolitanism. This USA is not only increasingly politically hamstrung, where even minor policy decisions warrant a full-throated war and where every sword is worth falling on, the rancor trickles down to friends and family, who a decade or so… Read More
Islands in the Anthropocene
Photography Trip to Iceland and Cuba - May 2018 What do Iceland and Cuba have in common? Besides the fact that they are islands struggling for survival in the midst of rising seas and climate changes, they are both destinations for Dr. Michael Mortimer, and an intrepid group of photographers traveling with Photo Workshop Adventures in May 2018. Do you have a camera? Do you like to travel? Can you imagine experiencing these two polar opposite environments, back to back, in 14… Read More
More in Morroco
Being in Morocco this week for the United Nations COP22 climate conference is an opportunity to witness a coming together of people from all over the world, all concerned with climate change. Individuals, NGOs, governments, and the private sector. That last group is one of the most interesting. Companies and start-ups are here to demonstrate and develop the value propositions that exist in solvingclimate change. Let that sink in—there is money to be made in addressing the most daunting global challenge of our era. Serving on… Read More
Despair and Inspiration
[The following remarks were delivered at the November 2016 XMNR X17-Cohort meeting.] I wanted to share a few words with all of you following the results of the presidential election just two days ago. I imagine that sounds a bit funereal, a bit maudlin. I struggled with what to say, given that there are people in this room that I’m sure voted on opposing sides. But I thought it important, as Center Director, that I say my piece. It appears from the county-by-county election… Read More
XMNR Alumni Peter Burke Leads ISO Environmental Standards Course with QMII
We are pleased to announce that one of our XMNR Alumni, Peter Burke, has developed in partnership with on-line learning site, QMII University (QMII) an Introduction to ISO Environmental Standards web course. This new course, Introduction to ISO Environmental Standards, is offered on the QMII website and covers new ISO standards, ISO 14001:2015 and ISO 9001:2015 and the application of those requirements to environmental management. The International Standards Organization (ISO) system is used to set requirements for standards used in the production of… Read More
Making the World Safe for Sovereignty
In April of 2016, United States’ President Barack Obama visited the United Kingdom. His purpose, at least partially, was to make plain the U.S. position on the proposed exit of Britain from the European Union — the so called "Brexit." Appearing alongside British Prime Minister David Cameron, a staunch opponent of Brexit, President Obama urged Britain to remain in the EU, to continue playing an EU leadership role. In the days leading up to Cameron and Obama’s stage show, former London mayor… Read More
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From the Blog

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XMNR Alum Karlee Siepierski tackles sustainability management at Swire Coca-Cola
BY ALEC MASELLA – JULY 16, 2019 Since graduating from the Executive Master of Natural Resources (XMNR) program at Virginia…
Holly Wise
Sustainable Brands Founder Calls for Courageous Optimism
The Sustainable Brands Conference drew over 2,000 people to Detroit’s Cobo Center the first week of June, for inspiration and…
CLiGS Instructor Brings EPA Experience to Private Sector in Green Infrastructure
  BY ALEC MASELLA – JULY 1, 2019 Turning sustainability goals into action can be an arduous process, requiring skills…
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Student Profiles

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Applying XMNR Lessons in the Field
When considering grad school, people often wonder whether the investment of time, effort, and resources will pay off. And if… Read More
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