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Environmental Conservation

Have you always wanted to work in the natural environment? Enroll in SVC's Environmental Conservation program and begin your career! The Environmental Conservation program prepares you to work in the field of natural resource conservation and ecological restoration. Career choices include studying and managing our wildlands, lakes, rivers and coastal waters, managing for parks and recreation lands, or focusing on the impacts caused by urbanization, forestry practices or agriculture.  Graduates are primarily employed by entities that manage and restore fish and wildlife habitat and their species.

The Water/Wastewater Treatment Technology program prepares students for entry-level employment as water supply or wastewater technicians. Professionals in these fields make daily decisions that affect public health and the environment. Graduates are primarily employed by cities, counties, federal agencies and industry that operate and maintain water treatment systems, water distribution, wastewater collection and/or wastewater treatment systems.

Program Options

SVC's program has a wide variety of options to meet your needs, whether you are a working professional or brand new to the field.
Associate in Technical Arts degrees in five areas of focus

  • Environmental Conservation - Aquatic/Terrestrial Emphasis, AAS-T
  • Environmental Conservation - Marine Emphasis, AAS-T
  • Environmental Conservation – CEFS, UW and CNR, UofI, AAS-T
  • Environmental Conservation – Water/Wastewater Technician Emphasis, ATA
  • Environmental Conservation - Parks Resource Management Emphasis, ATA

College Transfer Agreement option

  • University of Washington, College of Environmental and Forest Sciences, College of the Environment
  • University of Idaho, College of Natural Resources
  • Western Washington University, Fairhaven College
  • The Evergreen State College

Certificates

  • Environmental Conservation Studies
  • Water/Wastewater Treatment Technician Certificate

Microcertificates

  • Geographic Information Systems Certificate
  • Basic Wetland Delineation Certificate
  • Advanced Wetland Delineation Certificate
  • Individual Technical Certificate, designed to meet marketable objectives, approved by the department chair

Upgrade Certificates

  • Wildlife
  • Ecological Restoration
  • Water Quality
  • Fisheries

Program Learning Outcomes

Aquatic
Marine
Transfer
Parks
Water
  • Graduates of the ENVC-Aquatic/Terrestrial Emphasis program will

    • Be prepared with the skills and knowledge required for successful entry-level employment in a natural resources/environmental conservation-related workplace.
    • Be familiar with ecological restoration practices used to improve fish and wildlife habitat as well as water quality.
    • Apply field techniques to sample, measure, and monitor wildlife, birds and fish species and their habitats.
    • Apply field sampling techniques to sample, measure, and monitor aquatic and nearshore habitats.
    • Utilize maps and aerial photographs in the management of natural resources, including the applications of geographic information systems (GIS), Geographic positioning systems (GPS).
    • Demonstrate field identification of regionally important plant and animal species and their communities.
    • Demonstrate critical thinking, teamwork, communication, intercultural appreciation, and technical and information literacy skills.
    • Competently communicate in a multi-agency context, in oral and written forms as well as presentations with supervisor and peers.
    • Have knowledge and understanding of Federal and State laws that pertain to water, the aquatic environment, wetlands, and endangered species including a good working knowledge of water rights laws.
  • Graduates of the ENVC-Marine Emphasis program will

    • Competently communicate in a multi-agency context, in oral and written forms as well as presentations with supervisor and peers.
    • Be familiar with ecological restoration practices used to improve fish and marine habitat as well as water quality.
    • Apply field sampling techniques to sample, measure, and monitor marine habitats and their organisms.
    • Demonstrate critical thinking, teamwork, communication, intercultural appreciation, and technical and information literacy skills.
    • Demonstrate field identification of regionally important plant and animal species and their communities.
    • Have knowledge and understanding of Federal and State laws that pertain to water, the marine environment, wetlands, and endangered species including a good working knowledge of water rights laws.
  • Graduates of the ENVC-UW & UofI transfer program will

    • Competently communicate in a multi-agency context, in oral and written forms as well as presentations with supervisor and peers.
    • Apply field techniques to sample, measure, and monitor wildlife, birds and fish species and their habitats.
    • Apply field sampling techniques to sample, measure, and monitor aquatic and nearshore habitats.
    • Utilize maps and aerial photographs in the management of natural resources, including the applications of geographic information systems (GIS), Geographic positioning systems (GPS).
    • Demonstrate critical thinking, teamwork, communication, intercultural appreciation, and technical and information literacy skills.
    • Demonstrate field identification of regionally important plant and animal species and their communities.
    • Be familiar with ecological restoration practices used to improve fish and wildlife habitat as well as water quality.
    • Have knowledge and understanding of Federal and State laws that pertain to water, the aquatic environment, wetlands, and endangered species including a good working knowledge of water rights laws.
  • Graduates of the ENVC-Parks Resources Management emphasis program will

    • Competently communicate in a multi-agency context, in oral and written forms as well as presentations with supervisor and peers.
    • Skillfully communicate with resource area visitors using a public service approach to clients, regarding basic questions relating to ecosystem components, recreational opportunities, and employer rules and regulations.
    • Utilize maps and aerial photographs in the management of natural resources, including the applications of geographic information systems (GIS), Geographic positioning systems (GPS).
    • Demonstrate critical thinking, teamwork, communication, intercultural appreciation, and technical and information literacy skills.
    • Demonstrate field identification of regionally important plant and animal species and their communities.
    • Be familiar with ecological restoration practices used to improve fish and wildlife habitat as well as water quality.
    • Have knowledge and understanding of Federal and State laws that pertain to water, the aquatic environment, wetlands, and endangered species including a good working knowledge of water rights laws.
  • Graduates of the ENVC-Water/Wastewater Treatment Technology emphasis program will

    • Have working knowledge of water and wastewater technology.
    • Utilize maps and aerial photographs in the management of natural resources, including the applications of geographic information systems (GIS), Geographic positioning systems (GPS).
    • Demonstrate critical thinking, teamwork, communication, intercultural appreciation, and technical and information literacy skills.
    • Have knowledge and understanding of Federal and State laws that pertain to drinking water, and wastewater; including a good working knowledge of water rights laws.

You May Study

  • Biology & Salmon Ecology
  • Ecological Sampling & Monitoring
  • Limnology & Stream Ecology
  • Geographical Information Systems
  • Wildlife Biology
  • Global Positioning Systems
  • Conservation Biology
  • Fish Ecology & Management
  • Management of Watersheds/Lakes/Wetlands
  • Ecology of Ecosystem Edges/Ecotones
  • Wetland Ecology & Delineation
  • Water Treatment Systems
  • Park Resource Management
  • Forestry Techniques

Why Skagit Valley College?

  • Outstanding instructors with a reputation for excellence
  • Diverse program options: degrees, certificates and college transfers
  • Connections with the local resources community
  • Current technologies and the latest software applications
  • Internships provide real-world experience

Career Opportunities

Depending on the program emphasis you choose, your career choices include studying and caring for the marine environment, caring for parks and recreation lands, or focusing on the impacts caused by urbanization, forestry practices or agriculture. You may find work with a government agency, with private industry or with tribal organizations.

Placement Rate

Placement and Completion Data

Contact Us

Claus Svendsen
Department Chair
360.416.7816

Email Claus

Program Video