May 25, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
2023-2024 Catalog

Pre-Environmental and Sustainability Studies, A.A. (General Transfer)

Academic Program Code: 551

This cross-disciplinary pre-major will prepare students to transfer into a growing number of environmental studies-focused baccalaureates at our 4-year transfer institutions. These programs are responding to increasing demand for skilled personnel who can implement environmental and sustainability initiatives across the public and private sectors. Employment prospects for environmental careers is promising, and job growth in this field is anticipated to be faster than average for the next decade. Students interested in understanding and addressing the world’s growing environmental problems will be able to take classes in a variety of disciplines. Program courses will focus on deepening students’ understanding of the physical and societal impact of environmental issues and help them build the skills to conduct research, problem-solve, and effectively articulate their thoughts and ideas. Students completing this pre-major are on track to graduate with an Associate of Arts degree from GRCC and transfer to a 4-year institution to complete a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies and sustainability.

General Transfer Notes & Michigan Transfer Agreement

The coursework needed to complete this program is listed below.  The courses commonly transfer and satisfy 4-year program requirements at 4-year institutions in Michigan. 

To ensure maximum transferability of individual courses, all course selections should be based on the degree, major, minor, or academic interest at the 4-year transfer institution students plan to attend.

Students should research and utilize all transfer resources available to maximize the number of GRCC courses that transfer and apply to their 4-year program.

Because transferability of courses varies by institution, students should contact the 4-year institution they plan to attend to obtain detailed information about transfer requirements. The 4-year institutions ultimately make the decisions about how each course will be used to meet their program requirements.

GRCC advisors and faculty are available to help students navigate transfer resources and create an individualized transfer plan, including selection of courses, which meets all GRCC and transfer institution requirements.

Graduates of this program will earn an Associate of Arts degree from GRCC and may be eligible to earn the Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA) credential.

Admission requirements to 4-year institutions and 4-year programs vary. Students should review the specific admission requirements for the institution and program to which they are transferring.

General Education Courses

Select a minimum of 30 credit hours of coursework from the General Education course list. Select coursework as directed below.  Use transfer resources available to select coursework based on the transfer requirements of the bachelor’s degree program and institution to which you are transferring. See the “Program Courses” and “Open Elective Courses” section for courses that may also satisfy GRCC General Education Courses  Requirements.

English Composition and Communications


Select two (2) Humanities General Education Electives from two (2) different subject areas. Only one (1) Foreign Language course can be used for the Humanities requirement.

Social Sciences

Select two (2) Social Sciences General Education Electives from two (2) different subject areas.

Natural Sciences and Mathematics

Natural Sciences

Select two (2) Natural Sciences General Education courses from two (2) different subject areas; one (1) must be a lab.


Select one (1) Mathematics General Education Elective.

General Education Total Credit Hours

30 (minimum)

Program Elective Courses

Select a minimum of three (3) courses from the list below based on your transfer requirements. You may be able to select more than the minimum number of courses required for this section depending on the program and degree requirements at the institution to which you are transferring.

Be aware that some courses on the list below have required corequisites. Please click on a course to view any required corequisites.

Open Elective Courses

The remaining number of courses needed to complete the program will depend on the number of credit hours remaining needed to reach the 60 credits required for graduation. Course selections should be made based on transfer requirements.

The following GRCC Courses are recommended Open Electives:

Students are encouraged to use transfer resources available and consult their faculty advisors when choosing Open Elective courses.

Total Credit Hours

60 (minimum)

In What Order Should I Take Classes?

Please select courses from the Priority I list.  Select courses based on the number of credits you are taking in the semester, for example, if you are a part time student you do not have to take all of the courses listed.  If you are unable to schedule Priority I courses, move to and select from the list of Priority II, Priority III, and Priority IV courses.

Priority I Priority II

EN 101 - English Composition I  

General Education-Mathematics

General Education-Natural Sciences

ENS 201 - Introduction to Environmental and Sustainability Studies  

General Education Course

EN 102 - English Composition II  


COM 131 - Fundamentals of Public Speaking  


COM 135 - Interpersonal Communication  

General Education-Natural Science

GE 132 - Physical Geography  

General Education Course

General Education Course

Priority III Priority IV

GE 275 - Introduction to Geospatial Technologies and GIS

General Education Course

Program Elective Course

Program Elective Course

Program Elective Course

Open Elective Course

Open Elective Course

Open Elective Course

Open Elective Course

Open Elective Course

NOTE: This priority schedule assumes the student is prepared to take the courses listed. If prerequisites are required, additional semesters may be required to complete this degree.

Meet with an Academic Program Advisor and consult my Academic Progress for specific degree requirements.