ASU launches new degrees

ASU students, faculty and staff work in the campus community garden. Adams State recognizes the growing interest in food economy by creating a new food studies program. /Photo by Aaron Miltenberger

ALAMOSA – Adams State University is adding food studies and outdoor education and stewardship to its list of bachelor’s degree programs beginning in the Fall 2019-2020 academic year. The programs signal Adams State’s growing list of courses as it pushes for higher student enrollment.

Adams State President Cheryl D. Lovell has been pushing for innovations through new study areas.

“Food studies and outdoor education and stewardship are the first of what will be several new degree programs. We think both of these new areas of study are of particular relevance to the San Luis Valley and we’re excited to get them launched and students enrolled in them,” said President Lovell.

She is also encouraging the campus to grow its summer course offerings in 2019 and aim for growth in enrollment through a growing menu of online courses and online degrees.

On Saturday Adams State will host its spring Discover Day, where prospective students and families will tour the campus and get a taste of the academic setting at Adams State. Discover Day begins at 11 a.m. at Richardson Hall.

Food Studies at Adams State

The food studies program will give students an opportunity to become an essential part of a new food economy. Through an immersive and hands-on learning experience, students will get their hands dirty and grow their own crops. Graduates of the food studies program will have the skills to change the world by:

* Understanding world and local food systems to promote equity and social justice.

* Immersing in healthy food production and marketing through internships and hands-on practice on campus and across the San Luis Valley.

* Understanding the limitations and complexity of existing business models and advocating for new economic modes in the food industry.

* Promoting health and wellness through production and consumption of accessible, quality, fresh, local food.

* Implementing sustainable and regenerative practices from soil to fork.

* Promoting innovative ways to use agricultural practices to mitigate adverse climate change effects.

Outdoor Education and Stewardship at Adams State

Designed to give outdoor professionals flexibility in building their careers, students will gain skills in outdoor leadership, management, education, and environmental stewardship. Located within the department of Biology and Geosciences, the outdoor education and stewardship degree at Adams State will deepen students’ knowledge of ecology through a unique emphasis on stewardship practice of environmental science, complementing a student’s desire to care for and protect wild places.

Students majoring in outdoor education and stewardship will learn and apply skills in outdoor recreation activities, environmental stewardship, experiential learning, teamwork, communication, risk management, and program design. All students will participate in a variety of field-based and service-learning experiences and complete a 400-hour internship.

There are two areas of emphasis within the OES program: Adventure Education emphasis, which will prepare students to lead, facilitate, and engage with adventure recreation programming for a variety of diverse populations, activities, and objectives. And Environmental Education emphasis for students interested in leading or interacting with programs and services that emphasize environmental education, stewardship, or outfitting.

Adams State’s outdoor education and stewardship program is a good fit for the San Luis Valley. Home to the headwaters of the Rio Grande River, which is the lifeline of the San Luis Valley’s rich cultural and agricultural heritage, this remarkable region of Colorado includes the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve; 2 million acres of public lands including wetlands, wilderness areas, and 14ers; and people who are invested in the life and well-being of their communities. Through the outdoor education program, students will explore, learn, grow, and share their passion for the outdoors.

Students can apply to Adams State at