CORVALLIS, Ore. - As it expands its online degrees and programs, Oregon State University Extended Campus will offer a new master's of natural resources degree this fall.

This interdisciplinary program is designed for natural resources professionals around the world who are place-bound, but desire to pursue further training while carrying on their job duties, officials say.

"The master's of natural resources degree should meet the needs of professionals in the state, federal, and tribal natural resources management agencies, as well as industry, nongovernmental organizations, policy institutions, and international organizations," said program director Badege Bishaw, a faculty member in the OSU College of Forestry.

Five colleges and 12 departments will support the interdisciplinary program, which will provide training in multiple areas of natural resource management, including production, ecological, social, economic and ethical issues. Students can design an area of emphasis, or use some that are already the basis of graduate certificates, such as sustainable natural resources, fisheries management, water conflict management, or geographic information science.

"Growth in human population and affluence of well-educated people over coming decades will place ever more pressure on the world's natural resources - water, wood, flora, fauna, food, air, and open spaces," said Hal Salwasser, dean of the College of Forestry. "The twin challenges of this century will be to sustain Earth's life support systems and improve social justice at all scales in meeting human needs under these increasing pressures."

More detail about the program, prerequisites, and other available online degrees can be found on the website of OSU Extended Campus. Ecampus offers more than 15 online degrees.

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Badege Bishaw, 541-737-9495