At IE University, sustainability is more than just a buzzword. It’s a core part of what we do, transcending discipline and program to equip all our students with the necessary competencies to make the world a better place.
We already have sustainability integrated into our wide range of programs through various certificates and courses that are designed to teach students what it takes to design and realize sustainable projects in any field.
However, in our biggest move to date, we launched a new program late last year to concentrate our efforts to mold a new generation of eco-conscious leaders: the Bachelor in Environmental Sciences for Sustainability. Using a practical, scientific, and project-based approach to learning, this addition is set to educate students on the fundamentals of basic and applied sciences; give them an up-to-date view of the social, political and regulatory landscape; and nurture a deep understanding of the existing and emerging technologies and tools that professionals are using to find lasting solutions to global environmental challenges.
Backed by experimentation
To accomplish these objectives, the program emphasizes experimentation as an essential part of the problem-solving process. The Bachelor in Environmental Studies for Sustainability is offered at our Segovia campus, where four brand-new laboratories have been established to assist students in their research and scientific discovery. Fully equipped with the most cutting-edge scientific tools and designed according to rigorous international standards, these laboratories are just one of the highlights of this innovative program.
In each lab, students get a unique opportunity to flex their analytical skills; conducting experiments, carrying out research and administering practical studies in a simulated professional scientific setting. These activities will leave them with a well-developed hands-on skill set that will add to their professional profiles, even before they complete their programs.
Four labs, one objective
At Segovia, IE University is currently in the process of unveiling four distinct laboratories where both students and faculty can carry out their experimentation and scientific work. Despite serving different purposes, all four are tailored to meet one objective: to facilitate high-quality scientific discovery.
These four labs, in no particular order, include:
- The Molecular Biology Lab
The Molecular Biology lab operates under the highest biosecurity standards and is fitted with state-of-the-art equipment to facilitate a broad spectrum of scientific activity. Since it holds a number of biological agents, it is necessarily isolated to offer increased safety and convenience for both its users and surroundings.
- The Chemistry Lab
The Chemistry lab holds all the essential equipment required for the preparation, analysis and storage of liquid and solid samples. It houses all the traditional, high-tech apparatus you would expect in such a setting.
- The Earth Sciences Lab
Similarly, the Earth Sciences Lab is going to be a space with high-tech capabilities to aid Geology, Zoology and Botany-related research. It is suitable to support the preparation and analysis of various Earth materials, including rocks, fossils, minerals and so on.
- The Physics Lab
When it comes to physics, experimentation is a core part of the discipline. And so the new Physics lab is specially retrofitted to help students and faculty simulate real-world concepts in a controlled environment. Numerous facilities are available to ensure the rigorous application of scientific methods.
More than labs
These laboratories are beacons of innovation, housing some of the most advanced instruments used for scientific exploration. Apart from typical apparatus, they are equipped with inverted optical microscopes that can be used with both computers and display screens, fireproof tables, secured storage areas and appropriate hygiene and personal protective equipment (PPEs).
They also feature numerous interactive screens to foster a collaborative, hands-on approach. Furthermore, both technical and health and safety personnel will be on hand to ensure the highest standards are maintained.
Currently, the Physics laboratory is already operational while the rest are scheduled to open by June 2023.
Additionally, two external spaces are also available for students and faculty who want to conduct practical studies outdoors. Those who want to investigate topics related to botany, ecology and ecosystem dynamics will find these areas particularly useful. These outdoor spaces include rehabilitated sustainable orchards, full of native specie plantings; and a vermiculture farm that will help IE University make substantial progress in collecting and recycling organic waste material.
Scientific discovery for sustainability
Through the Bachelor in Environmental Sciences for Sustainability, IE University hopes to play its part in creating a more green future. The research students and faculty will conduct at these labs will be crucial to helping companies, governments and industries fast-track the search for sustainable solutions to mitigate ongoing environmental crises, including global warming.
IE University has already established collaborations with leading research organizations including the Center for Energy, Environmental and Technological Research (CIEMAT) and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC).
All in all, students in the program can expect an exciting four years full of in-depth knowledge and research; and relevant insights from a highly trained collection of faculty and technical support staff. Through their contributions, they will play an important part in championing scientifically-informed environmental solutions that will transform our world for the better.