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Dual Degrees

We've partnered with several of the University of Pennsylvania’s world-class graduate programs to provide you with the opportunity to earn a second degree while studying in the Master of Environmental Studies program. You must be accepted to each program separately, but all dual degree programs are available to you even after you begin the Master of Environmental Studies degree. With a dual degree program, you gain deep expertise in two areas, doubling your networks and knowledge.

The laws governing land, pollution and natural resources shape both the environment and humans’ relationships to the planet. To provide you with expertise in both environmental and ecological issues, and the laws that can determine the fate of both human and natural communities, the Master of Environmental Studies program has partnered with Penn Law to enable students to earn a dual Master of Environmental Studies/Juris Doctorate (MES/JD) degree in four years. This course of study will prepare students to assume positions of leadership in environmental law and policy making in both the public and private sector.

Due to the greater flexibility in scheduling generally offered by the Master of Environmental Studies program, our courses are typically taken during the summers, in the evening and online, enabling you to pursue law clerkships during the summer.

To begin the dual degree, you must apply and gain admission to both schools independently. Once admitted, you may choose the dual-degree program.

Visit the Penn Law website to read the full description of the MES/JD dual degree for additional JD program and admission requirements.

This dual degree allows you to earn both the Master of Environmental Studies and MBA degree from Penn’s internationally renowned Wharton School in three years or less. The program grooms students for global leadership roles in environmental management, finance and other business specialties. 

The Master of Environmental Studies portion of your studies will deepen your knowledge of environmental issues, teach you technical environmental evaluation and offer you practical experience. Classes in Wharton’s MBA will help you develop a range of skills and knowledge you can apply in business and sustainability practice.

To begin the dual degree, you must apply and gain admission to both schools independently. Once admitted, you may choose the dual-degree program.

Visit Wharton's website to read the full description of the MES/MBA dual degree for additional MBA program and admission requirements.

In collaboration with Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine, the College of Liberal and Professional Studies offer students a dual degree option for a Master of Public Health (MPH) and Master of Environmental Studies (MES) for those who are interested in pursuing environmental public health. Careers in the field range from regulating air pollution, environmental education and geographic mapping to addressing complex and ever-changing legal regulation around environmental hazards to public health.

This dual degree program, which can be completed in three years of full-time study, expands the range of your skills and knowledge in this growing field. The Master of Environmental Studies program provides exposure to earth sciences, policy and other relevant disciplines that complement the MPH curriculum, which focuses on research, education and service learning in population health problems. Together, these programs allow you to go on to careers where you may demonstrate your expertise in environmental health, policy and its effects on communities at risk for disease and injury.

Additionally, the multi-disciplinary nature of the Master of Environmental Studies degree exposes you to faculty and students with similar interests in environmentally-related topics throughout the Penn community. The capstone project, which is a final culmination of your specific area of interest gives you the opportunity to participate in a research initiative related to this combined field of study.

To begin the dual degree, you must apply and gain admission to both the Perelman School of Medicine and the College of Liberal and Professional Studies independently. Once admitted, you may choose the dual degree program.

Visit Penn's Master of Public Health website to read the full description of the MES/MPH dual degree for additional MPH program and admission requirements.

The ubiquity of environmental law across all parts of the private and public sectors makes this area of study relevant to a wide range of students, who then go on to careers such as government and nonprofit policy development, private consulting for resource management, and business sustainability reporting across entire supply chains.  The capstone component of the MES program provides students with the opportunity to participate in a research initiative related to an aspect of environmental law. Students in this dual degree program obtain needed structure for study within the broad field of environmental law, which ranges from resource use, to air and water pollution regulation, to addressing complex and ever-changing energy policy.  Full time-students complete the program in two and a half years while part-time students may take up to five years to complete the dual degree.

To begin the dual degree, you must apply and gain admission to both the Penn Law School and the College of Liberal and Professional Studies independently. Once admitted to both programs, you may choose the dual degree program.

Visit Penn Law’s website to read the full description of the Master in Law program and admission requirements.

A large part of environmental work today is done through or in collaboration with nonprofits and NGOs. While the MES offers an in-depth study of environmental problems and potential solutions, a dual degree program with Nonprofit Leadership provides you with avenues to make change. A solid foundation in nonprofit leadership aids you in finding innovative approaches to address the challenges we face today and will face in the future. You can go on to careers such as nonprofit resource management, environmental justice advocacy, and urban resilience and adaptation policy development.

The MES/NPL dual degree program may be completed on a full-time or part-time schedule. Full-time students can expect to complete the dual degree in two years including summer, while part-time students can take up to five years to complete the degree.

To begin the dual degree, you must apply and gain admission to both the School of Social Policy and Practice and the College of Liberal and Professional Studies independently. Once admitted to both programs, you may choose the dual degree program.

Visit Penn’s Social Policy and Practice website to read the full description of the Master of Science in Nonprofit Leadership dual degree program and admission requirements.

Veterinarians are poised to influence policies and practices that have direct impact on the environment. Trained to recognize the interdependency of animal, human and environmental health—an understanding referred to as One Health—we are acutely aware of the effect environments have on animal health, as well as the effect animals, particularly livestock, have on the environment.

With the growing role of veterinary medicine in wildlife and ecosystem health, and the increasingly critical environmental issues developing throughout the world, veterinarians with expertise in environmental science are ideally suited and trained to play an important role in addressing these growing global challenges.

About the program

The VMD/MES dual degree program is offered jointly by Penn Vet and Penn’s School of Arts and Sciences. This unique combined degree offers students the opportunity to earn a professional degree in Veterinary Medicine (VMD) and a Master of Environmental Studies (MES) concurrently.

A multi-disciplinary approach: The MES program offers a multi-disciplinary approach to the study of the environment bringing together researchers and practitioners in the physical, biological, health, and social sciences with professionals in planning, business, health care, and law to address myriad problems affecting the environment now and our sustainability for the future.

This multi-disciplinary approach provides graduates with the breadth of knowledge necessary to address the complex nature of the environment as well as the depth of specific expertise in fields such as resource management, sustainability, policy, and urban resilience and adaptation

How the MES/VMD works: This dual degree program is designed with cross-counted electives that also fulfill vet school requirements so that students can complete both degrees in five years or less, providing students with unique training, positioning them to lead and contribute to interprofessional teams that can advance innovative approaches to enhance environmental and agricultural sustainability, as well as global biodiversity—key challenges in our present and future.

When can I apply? Veterinary students may apply prior to entering vet school or during the fall of their first or second years. Ideal applicants will be those with a mature understanding of issues at the interface of animal and environmental health, a strong academic track record, and a well-articulated intention of integrating skills in environmental studies with their professional careers.

About the capstone project: During the first spring semester of the program, each student selects a capstone project, which is an independent, research exercise that demonstrates the student's mastery of the subject matter. The capstone documents the student's ability to define a research question; design a protocol to address that question; acquire the data necessary to clarify, if not resolve, that question; critically assess the quality of the data acquired; draw defensible conclusions from those data; and communicate that process and those conclusions to professional colleagues with clarity and precision. For the dual degree, the project will be related to veterinarian medicine and the environment and can be related to the student’s clinical work.

VMD/MES graduates: A growing need

  • Conservation of indigenous wildlife populations with attention to genetic diversity and fitness in both disease resistance and reproduction.
  • Infectious disease ecology, surveillance, control, and preventive measures at the wildlife-domestic animal and wildlife-human interface.
  • The design, implementation, study, and refinement of rehabilitated aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems characterized by reduced threats of toxicologic and infectious diseases and invasive species, as well as improvements in biodiversity.
  • Siting and management of food-animal production medicine in ways that enable recovery of biodiversity in nearby agricultural landscapes, natural areas, streams, corridors, and buffer zones.
  • The diagnosis and prevention of the adverse impacts of chemical pollutants through knowledge and skills in clinical and diagnostic veterinary toxicology, regulatory toxicology, environmental toxicology, and wildlife/ecological toxicology.

How to apply

Separate applications and acceptances are required for both the MES and VMD degrees. Students interested in the dual degree option will be required to articulate their interests and career aspirations in a separate essay and interview that will be evaluated in conjunction with all application material provided to Penn Vet, by the MES/VMD Advisory Team.

Veterinary students may apply prior to entering vet school or during the fall of their first or second years. Ideal applicants will be those with a mature understanding of issues at the interface of animal and environmental health, a strong academic track record, and a well-articulated intention of integrating skills in environmental studies with their professional careers.

Career options for VMD/MES graduates

Veterinarians with an understanding of and training in environmental science can interact with wildlife and ecosystem in the following ways:

  • Health management of free-ranging wildlife populations
  • Zoo animal medicine
  • Aquatic wildlife and marine mammal health
  • Wildlife rehabilitation
  • Environmental, wildlife, or ecological toxicology

The careers of veterinarians who assume such responsibilities may focus on diagnostics, basic and applied research, and/or stewardship activities.

Questions about the MES/VMD?

Want more information about the MES/VMD program? Contact us today.

The purpose of the multi-master's degree program in International Environmental Management is to bring together highly qualified individuals from France, China and the United States with a variety of master’s degrees in a unique and rigorous program that will prepare them to manage complex international environmental challenges.

Advanced students in the Master of Environmental Studies program may apply to this exceptional multi-master’s degree program in International Environmental Management after they have completed eight course units.

If you are accepted into the program, you will study at Tsinghua University in China for three months, and then at Mines ParisTech in France for four months. This study is followed by a six-month internship anywhere in the world.

In total, you will earn three degrees:

  • Master of Environmental Studies from the University of Pennsylvania
  • Mastère Spécialisè in Environmental Management from Mines ParisTech
  • Master of Engineering from Tsinghua University

Together, these credentials provide you with a powerful understanding of environmental challenges and policies around the world.

Our multi-master’s degree students often go on to exciting consulting positions and other jobs across the globe.

The program consists of:

  • Eight course units in the Master of Environmental Studies program at Penn
  • Four months of intensive seminars at Mines ParisTech in Fontainbleau, France
  • Three months of study at the Franco-Chinese Center of Environment and Energy at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China
  • A six-month internship with a corporation with which the student has previously arranged an internship to work on an environmental management problem. The report that results from this internship will serve as the capstone for the Master of Environmental Studies program.

Master of Environmental Studies students interested in this program must complete eight course units at Penn before applying to Mines ParisTech, which administers the France and China portions of the program. 

Applications are generally due to Mines ParisTech in January each year. Penn students who enter in the fall take a full-time load of courses in the fall and spring and apply for the following fall semester.

For more information on this program, please contact the Program Director.

Read more about the International Advanced Master (Mastère Spécialisé, MS) in Environmental Management at Mines ParisTech. 

Certificates

While enrolled in the Master of Environmental Studies degree, you may also pursue one of four certificate options. In many cases, courses taken in the degree program will overlap with requirements for the certificate and can be double-counted.

The certificates include:

Submatriculation for Penn undergraduates

If you are a current undergraduate student at the University of Pennsylvania and know you want to pursue a Master of Environmental Studies degree, you can submatriculate into the program. Submatriculates begin their graduate studies while still completing an undergraduate degree. Read more about submatriculation into the MES program.

Master of Environmental Studies Virtual Café

Join us on the first Tuesday of every month for an online chat, hosted live from noon - 1 p.m.

Ready to apply?

See deadlines, review our application materials checklist, and get ready to apply.

For this geologist, teaching in Penn’s Master of Environmental Studies is a field day

MES in the Community

Sally Willig believes that experience is the best teacher, so she encourages getting hands-on with the environment—wherever you happen to be.