The Mission Statement of William Paterson University commits the University to the pursuit of educational excellence within the framework of learning communities and by an emphasis on interdisciplinary study in a historical context. The Environmental Science department aims to implement this philosophy by encouraging these communities, and the faculty and students within the program in particular, to pursue scholarship and research about our natural environment and the interaction of mankind with that environment.

The pursuit of excellence implies the provision of the means to achieve that excellence. The Environmental Science department aspires to provide the resources necessary for its students and faculty to realize that goal - by providing students with the intellectual skills that establish a pattern for life-long learning; by providing faculty and students with the material facilities and intellectual atmosphere which fosters scholarship and research and participation in the leadership and governance of the University community.

The Environmental Science department recognizes and accepts its role as the paramount interdisciplinary program within the University. As such, its sees the need not only to foster the perception of the relationship between scientific disciplines but to strive to incorporate the ethical dimensions of environmental concerns into every aspect of its mission.

As an interdisciplinary program Environmental Science does not seek to impose any single avenue of scholarship among its faculty. Rather, faculty are encouraged to research and scholarship in an atmosphere of the greatest possible freedom both by contributing to their own disciplines and by the effective dissemination of those bodies of knowledge through sound and innovative teaching.

The Environmental Science department aims to look beyond the campus community to the world, national and especially the local community by actively seeking to participate in the solution of specific environmental community problems and to aid those communities in assessing their resources and planning their future. The department aims to involve that community in the education of our students and to involve our students in the education of the community. Community service as exemplified in Environmental Science Senior Practicum and Field Experience courses will remain the capstone of the major.

The Environmental Science department believes that it has the mandated mission to address the following needs of its students:

Students should be challenged to excellence in scholarship by providing a program of study which is current, relevant and focused and to assure that the students are provided with the means to meet that challenge. The program aims to actively and continuously measure the success of that challenge through an ongoing program of student and faculty assessment.

Students should be encouraged to draw connections between disciplines, and to place particular emphasis on the ethical dimensions of environmental concerns.

Faculty within the program will serve the University community through service in School and University-wide committees and within the Faculty Senate and Senate Councils.