The University of Wisconsin Board of Regents has authorized UW-Green Bay to establish the UW System’s first Bachelor of Science degree in water science.

The major will have a principal focus on water’s role in natural processes in Earth’s systems. Students will develop a solid understanding of the chemistry, surface water hydrology, groundwater and biology of freshwater systems.

“Water is arguably the single greatest resource challenge of the 21st century,” said John Luczaj, UW-Green Bay professor of geoscience. “The world faces significant challenges regarding water quality, quantity and ecological functions that are expected to worsen. The global need for water science professionals to solve critical water issues is accelerating and expected to continue indefinitely.”

The undergraduate program is expected to welcome its first cohort of students as early as fall 2019. It will be designed primarily for face-to-face delivery, but instruction is also expected to include online and in-field immersion opportunities.

The program is expected to prepare students for career opportunities in private industry, water utilities, geotechnical consulting, natural resources management, state and federal government agencies or environmental policy organizations.