MUM, our sister university, established in the United States the first four-year Sustainable Living degree program in 2003, and is a leader in the field.
This new academic discipline is now being pioneered at UMLAC and at an increasing number of other institutions around the world. Because it is so new as a discipline there are no broadly accepted guidelines on what constitutes an education in Sustainable Living. In contrast, more traditional disciplines like engineering, business, biology, philosophy, anthropology, etc. have curriculum standards and specialties that are widely accepted by institutions offering these programs.

B.A. in Sustainable Living

Minor in Sustainable Living

This 4 year degree prepares students for careers in sustainable community development and environmental coordination, or further study and research. Students interested in receiving a B.A. in Sustainable living must complete at least 56 credits worth of courses from our program. A Sustainable Living minor provides students with a practical foundation for understanding the principles and practices of environmental design for communities. Any student can receive a minor in Sustainable Living by completing at least five core courses and one elective from our program

Special Features

Hands-on Projects during and after class that make abstract concepts learned in class concrete. For example, in addition to learning the theory of how wind generators work, our students have designed and built three generations of wind generators from scratch. We’ve worked to build a regional food system. And UMLAC faculty and students have played key roles in the Mayor Ed Malloy’s strategic plan for sustainability in Fairfield.
One Course at a time– The Block System — our students are fully immersed in one course each month, and
then move on to the next course. The block system is immensely popular with our students because they learn more, and it eliminates the stress of taking 4–5 subjects at once.
Internships – Students can earn up to 16 credits of internships that provide on-the-job training. In some cases, internships provide a stipend or cover expenses. We work to maintain relationships for local, regional,
national, and international internship opportunities. Examples include sustainable agriculture, the building
trades, environmental organizations, green business, and many other venues that provide practical experience in selected areas of interest.
Certifications – We offer academic credit for successful completion of professional certifications in sustainability. From time to time we offer certifications as part of our program. Professional certification requirements are constantly changing and our in-program offerings also change as conditions in the broader
ommunity evolve. Certification offerings have included Building Biology and Permaculture Design, as well as
Resnet Energy Rater Training and AutoCADD.

What our Program Offers What our Program Doesn’t Offer
  • Personal development of consciousness
  • Broad-based understanding of sustainability for communities
  • A new worldview grounded in hope, and selfawarenessRedesign for regeneration and renewal
  • Training for specific (green) jobs or careers through tracks and internships
  • Hands-on application of principles, as well as theory
  • Hands-on workshops for community and homesteading energy and water management
  • A living laboratory for the development of creative solutions
  • Training to be a leader in the great enterprise of creating a sustainable future for our world
  • Community college style vocational/job training
  • An engineering or architecture degree
  • A conventional environmental science educationPollution control training
  • A guide to increase efficiency and substitution alone
  • A step-by-step process on how to live in the woods in a self-reliant way (individual self sufficiency)
  • A guide to increase efficiency and substitution alone

Degree Requirements

In addition to the requirements listed below for the BA in Sustainable Living, students must successfully complete all general requirements for a bachelor’s degree. To graduate with a major in Sustainable Living from Maharishi University of Management, students must complete 56 credits from the coursework listed below, which includes 4 credits of Sustainable Living Internship.

Permaculture is our sort of lead course for the whole program of sustainable living.

Core Courses (24 credits)

  • SL-G202 Critical Thinking
  • Sl-B101 Sustainability Buildings and the Built Environment
  • SL-G201 Ecology
  • SL-E101 Energy and Sustainability
  • SL-G101 Permaculture Design
  • SL-P101 Global Sustainability

Concentrations                                                                                                                                                                     Go Back

Our program aims to give students the breadth of wisdom to be able to make a real difference in their own lives and the life of society.  In addition to the set of core courses, students interested in going deeper into one area of sustainability have the option of following an educational track/concentration within a key area of concern to sustainable communities. Currently, we offer the Renewable Energy Track, our first track, described below.

Renewable Energy

The energy track is for students who want to go into greater depth about energy and sustainability.

Currently, Energy 101 is offered every year, and Energy 201-203 are offered in two year rotations. Good basic math skills, including addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, working with decimals and fractions, basic trigonometric relation of angles, areas, and volumes, basic algebra, and simple statistics like averages and mean, are needed for deep understanding and success in these courses. The suggested sequence of courses for the energy track and descriptions of each course are listed below:


  • Energy 101: Energy and Sustainability: The Energy Basis of Humans and Nature
  • Energy 201: Renewable Energy Technology: Solar, Wind, Water Prerequisites: Energy 101, Math for sustainable Living, Physics and Chemistry for Sustainable Living or permission of Instructor
  • Energy 301: Modeling and Monitoring Energy Flow Prerequisites: Energy 101, Math for Sustainable Living, Physics and Chemistry for Sustainable Living or permission of Instructor

Electives (20 credits)

Students can spread their elective credits over any of the Sustainable Living elective courses, or they can focus their elective courses within a single Sustainable Living concentration. See Concentrations.

Once a student has completed the 4 required credits of Sustainable Living Internship, he or she can apply up to an additional 12 credits of internship to count toward the 20 credits necessary to fulfill the Electives requirement.

Courses that can fulfill the Electives requirement include any of the Sustainable Living courses, or the following courses in other departments:

  • FA 201 Art and Nature
  • FA 356 Sustainable Garden Design
  • MGT 200 Principles of Business Success
  • MGT 432 Entrepreneurship Project
  • MC 363 Web Design Studio
  • MVS 240 EEG, Brain, and Enlightenment
  • MVS 309 Fundamentals of World Peace

Internship (4 credits)

Students are required to complete 4 credits of a Sustainable Living Internship. It is possible to earn up to 12 additional credits through a Sustainable Living Internship, which can be applied to the Sustainable Living Electives requirement.We work individually with every student in the department, assess their interests and career goals and tailor each internship to those aspirations. We have placed interns across the U.S. and abroad. A sampling of the organizations, non-profits and community groups we are currently working with include: The Rodale Institute, Ho Chunk Elder’s Council, Wildbear Mountain Ecology Center, Habitat for Humanity, Finca Luna Nueva Lodge in Costa Rica, the City Repair Project, EcoNest Homes and Fundacion Hogares Claret in Latin America.

Senior Project (8 credits)

SL-G401, Senior Sustainable Living Project, will comprehensively apply concepts and skills learned in other Sustainable Living courses. It is
advisable to first complete SL-G400, Sustainable Living Project Prep (which counts as an SL elective), in order to research project ideas and
to ensure that students are beginning the Senior Project well-prepared.

Pass Senior Comprehensive Exam on Sustainable Living


To graduate with a Minor in Sustainable Living, students must complete all of the core courses in Sustainable Living, plus one elective course. For further information click here