Requirements for admission to all programs include:
- Undergraduate degree (minimum GPA of 3.0*)
- Goals statement
- Virginia Tech Application for Admission
- $75 non-refundable application fee
- Current resume/CV
- Two professional recommendations
- Copies of official relevant academic transcripts
No GRE required; English language proficiency assessment is required for international students per VT Graduate School requirements.
*Talk to an Academic Advisor in the program of your choice if your undergraduate GPA is below 3.0.
The Master of Natural Resources is a 30-credit professional (non-thesis) graduate degree consisting of 5 required core courses and 5 elective courses.
In the Master of Natural Resources program, students have the flexibility to enroll in the number of courses per semester that best accommodate their schedule: from 1 credit hour to 15 or more. Most students choose a path of two courses per semester/18-months, but students have up to five years to complete the 30 credits and can take fewer courses per year. A longer timeframe with fewer courses may impact financial aid eligibility.
Students in the Executive Master of Natural Resources program have the required credit hours mapped for them for the duration of the program, which allows them to graduate in a year.
Our programs are offered in two formats: online and hybrid.
In the Master of Natural Resrouces program, all online courses are taught asynchronously. This is not the same as self-paced or self-taught; there are course module and assignment deadlines to keep students on track, as well as both individual and group activities. However, students don't have to schedule their time to join real-time, streaming lectures; instead, they can access their course(s) when it's convenient for them. Our students live and work all over the world, so this asynchronous format allows for maximum flexibility. The only required in-person component is a 10-day Global Study trip.
The Executive Master of Natural Resources (XMNR) is a hybrid program, which means that it’s a mix of in-person/virtual meetings, and online individual and small-group work. Students gather on campus in the Washington, D.C. metro area five times a year for three-day immersive study weekends, convene six times virtually for two-day meetings, and participate in a 10-day Global Study trip. XMNR virtual meetings are synchronous, where all students are present at the same time.
Every student in our programs participates in a 10-day Global Study experience—a required part of our degree—to engage with real-world global sustainability challenges.
If traveling for Global Study is not possible, we have alternatives for fulfilling this requirement to enable all students to graduate according to their plan of study.
Is it covered by tuition?
- Executive Master of Natural Resources tuition includes all costs associated with a Global Study, except international airfare.
- Master of Natural Resources students pay an additional program fee of $3,650 plus international airfare.
Please visit the Global Study section of the site for destination details and current policies related to COVID-19 restrictions.
- Students may qualify for financial aid, usually in the form of student loans.
- We don’t have a state residency requirement. All students, U.S.-based or international, pay the same regardless of where they live.
- Veteran and military benefits cover tuition and fees, housing allowance, and more.
- VT employees can have nearly 100% of the cost covered.
Please visit individual program sections for more information:
Absolutely. Virginia Tech is proud of its long military history and has a strong commitment to supporting the success of our military-connected students, whether active duty, veterans, or dependents.
Please visit the Military & Veterans page for details.
Yes, indeed. The majority of our students are working full-time. The Master of Natural Resources degree at Virginia Tech is designed for working professionals and adult learners—people with jobs, families, and other commitments that might take priority over school. Our students often credit the asynchronous nature of the program as one of the main reasons for choosing our program.
Sustainability can mean different things to different people, which is actually a great thing for graduates. You’ll be surprised by the variety of organizations and functions where your MNR degree will be a boost to your career. For more information, please visit our Career Coaching and Pathways page.
The MNR focus areas are designed to give students a deeper understanding of a selected area of study:
- Biodiversity and Ecosystems
- Cities and Urban Systems
- Climate Change
- Sustainable Business
- Water and Marine Systems
- Environmental Policy
Students and alums have access to extensive resources to support career and professional development in the sustainability field:
- Resources and services provided by Kerry Spitze (our lead career advisor) and Virginia Tech's Career and Professional Development
- Sustainability career information and networks
- Sustainability job boards and job search tips
- CLiGS blog series on career guidance for sustainability professionals
A Graduate Certificate is a specialized, short-form non-degree program that allows you to enhance your credentials and be recognized as a leader in this field. We offer two certificates: a Graduate Certificate in Natural Resources (GCNR) and a Graduate Certificate in Global Sustainability (GCGS). The latter is awarded to all MNR students as part of earning the degree. All students pursuing a Graduate Certificate are eligible to enroll in the degree program at any time.