Sustainability & Energy Applications


Course Descriptions

SEA 1103 – Global Energy Issues – 3 credit hours

This is a cross-disciplinary course open to all majors.  The course critically examines issues associated with the technical, economic, societal, environmental, and geopolitical aspects of energy and sustainability.  The course is taught through lectures, discussions, hands-on activities, field trips, and invited speakers.  Course rotation: Fall.  General Education: Core – Application & Integration of Knowledge.

SEA 1203 – Solutions in Sustainability – 3 credit hours

This is a cross-disciplinary course open to all majors.  The course critically examines issues associated with the technical and environmental aspects of energy and sustainability.  The course will take a comprehensive look at all ten recognized energy sources and will focus on five alternative and renewable resources and how they can help move our campus forward in sustainability.  The course is taught through lectures, discussions, hands on activities, field trips, and invited speakers, in both on and off campus classroom settings.  Prerequisite: Instructor’s permission.  Course rotation: Fall and spring.  General Education: Intermediate – Inquiry & Analysis.

SEA 2103 – Introduction to Electrical Energy Systems – 3 credit hours

This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of AC/DC electrical theory as it relates to alternative and renewable energy systems.  This course will provide a basic mechanical background and a working knowledge of tools and applications, OSHA safety 10, and workplace safety and will provide the environment for technical thinking and problem solving skill applications in a project-based learning environment.  Course rotation: Spring.

SEA 2203 – Alternative Energy Analysis – 3 credit hours

This course will provide an introduction to the history of various energy technologies – oil, coal, natural gas, and wind – including geography, site analysis, resources, and restrictions.  Students will analyze current energy systems in terms of their applications and status.  The process will include project recommendations based on the site, structures, and both existing and proposed features.  Analysis will be project-based and will require cost comparisons of various energy solutions and calculations involving system comparisons.  Prerequisites: SEA 1203, SEA 2103, and instructor’s permission.  Course rotation: Spring.

SEA 3013 – Research in Bio-Energy – 3 credit hours 

This course is designed to provide an introduction to the fundamentals of bio fuels and bio energy.  Emphasis is placed on bio-diesel:  proper handling and usage guidelines, basic chemistry of bio-fuels, production methodology, and the socio-enviro-economic impacts.  Provides students with an historical perspective and investigations into bio-fuels. Upon completion students will be able to demonstrate a general understanding of bio-fuels.  Applied research project required.  Prerequisites: SEA 1103 or SEA 1203 and SEA 2103.  Course rotation: Fall.  General Education: Intermediate – Inquiry & Analysis; Intermediate – Application & Integration of Knowledge.

SEA 3103 – Building Energy Technology Applications – 3 credit hours

This course will be a broad building-science course.  It will present a solid scientific foundation upon which students use the same techniques as inspectors and auditors to build an accurate understanding of modern buildings.  Includes discussion of technologies, typical installations and their defects, audit procedures, retrofit recommendations, energy efficiency, building durability, and human health using the BPI certification model.  Prerequisites: SEA 1203, SEA 2203, and instructor’s permission.  Course rotation: Fall.  

SEA 3203 – Environmental Safety & Energy Policy – 3 credit hours

This course focuses on the key policy instruments utilized to foster use of and development for renewable energy.  It covers the basic introduction to public energy policy, various levels of policy making, and the scope of policy tools related to renewable energy, air and water quality, environmental hazards related to energy, and electricity production.  The goal is to develop the analytical framework to understand the variety of impacts, range and scope of policy and a practical foundation for understanding the history of safety and energy policy.  Course rotation: Spring.

SEA 3303 – Topics in Sustainability & Energy Applications – 3 credit hours

This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of and provide the environment for technical thinking and problem solving skill applications in a project-based learning environment.  Prerequisites: SEA 1203, SEA 2103, SEA 3013, and instructor’s permission.  Course rotation: Spring.

SEA 4904 – Sustainability & Energy Policy Capstone Project – 4 credit hours

The goal of this course is to provide a culminating experience where students apply the knowledge, skills, and methods acquired through their studies to the mastery of an energy and sustainability policy topic of their choosing.  Students will work independently to discover fully the science, technology, economics, and politics underlying the topic chosen.  They will identify stakeholders, engage with others, form their own well-supported opinion, and seek opportunities to participate publicly.  The arc of the project includes a rigorous and in-depth examination of the issue, development of a well-articulated position on the issue, an in-person presentation to an audience engaged on the issue of the student’s findings, recommendations, and a recorded presentation that will be made available on public media (YouTube) and program website.  Prerequisites: Senior standing in the major and instructor’s permission.  Course rotation: Spring.  General Education: Mastery – Communication; Mastery – Inquiry & Analysis; Mastery – Engaged Local & Global Citizenship; Mastery – Application & Integration of Knowledge.

SEA PN03 – Energy Co-op/Internship – 3 credit hours

This course is designed to provide students with the opportunity to work in the energy sector for the semester.  It will provide them with valuable experience and the opportunity to apply knowledge gained from previous courses and to engage their personal vision and apply adaptive changes in lifestyles.  Prerequisites: Senior standing in the major and instructor’s permission.  Course rotation: All semesters.