Is It Eco-Friendly to Go to School Online?
Sure, you use some energy keeping the computer on long enough to study your materials, engage in a community forum with your classmates, and email your professor your homework, but is it actually doing something positive, or minimizing harmful effects to the environment when you participate in an online program for a degree, rather than an on-campus one? Let’s think about this.
What about the text books? They require trees, processing likely with dyes or chemicals, transportation for shipping or distribution, etc. What if your online text books for something like a basic Psychology degree online were completely taken out of the equation, because you could access your text materials online? What if it were a PDF that you downloaded, or an eBook that you had to read on your Kindle or iPad? Yes, there are the associated costs with producing eBook readers, including all the same distribution costs as text books, but what if the average amount of text books associated with a standard B.A. program is something like 100? Buying one Kindle instead of 100 text books might start to make a fairly significant difference, right?
Looking at Other Factors Involved With Online Green Degrees
Think about the transportation costs too — you have to fill up your tank if you’re driving to a regular physical campus, right? So getting an online degree might cut back on fuel costs, keeping several cars off the road. Some schools have 20,000+ students, which is a lot of gas if a high percentage of them is commuting. And physical campuses require tons of landscape maintenance. Is this a “push” when it comes to the environment? This may in fact depend on the “green” policy of the particular school — if they use harmful pesticides or fertilizers, and then allow water runoff into storm drains, then eliminating a physical campus and going with an online college matters. If the campus policy is a bit more eco-friendly, then there might be a net-positive affect when it comes to the grounds, as we all know that planting a few trees never hurt anyone.
For those students interested in pursuing careers in sustainability should know that they can now choose from a wide variety of green degree programs, including those listed here: Green MBA Programs: Sustainability MBA Degrees. Combining an online, greener degree system with a Green MBA program might be just the ticket for those super environmentally conscious prospective students looking to make a positive impact on the planet while educating themselves for the green economy. Even if you’re interested in an advanced degree in a more straightforward discipline like a Psychology Masters, there are still qualified online degree programs that allow you to get the education you desire, while reducing your overall negative footprint.
With an increased interest in the environment and growth in the “green collar” job sector, colleges and universities are beginning to incorporate sustainability into their programs. From MBAs in sustainable-business practices to programs that give students the technical training necessary to operate wind turbines, students have an increasing array of options to choose from.
Resources and Online Articles About Green Online Degrees
Here is a short list of information worth giving a look: sustainability degrees, green tech degree advice, green energy education, and green MBA programs.
From USA Today: College students are flocking to sustainability degrees, careers.
From Associate Degree College: Green Technology Associate Degree.
MBA Programs Go Green, from Bloomberg BusinessWeek. “To fill jobs in clean tech and help tomorrow’s business leaders solve our environmental problems, schools are ramping up sustainability programs—inside the classroom and out,” by Francesca Di Meglio.
Professional Certificate in Green Energy Management Online from San Diego State University.
From Easy Ways to Go Green: Green MBA Programs: Sustainability MBA Degrees.[Photo Via: DWHS]