Binghamton, NY
student ratio
total students
Tuition Cost Not Reported
Not Reported
average amount to complete degree
fall application deadline
acceptance rate
2 Degrees Offered
degrees offered


Graduate programs in sustainable communities aim to address today's economic, environmental, and social challenges

Binghamton University, State University of New York (SUNY), is one of four university centers in the State University of New York system. Consistently cited by distinguished national college guides and magazines as one of the nation's premier public universities, Binghamton University attracts outstanding students from 44 states and 117 countries to a 930-acre campus in the Southern Tier of New York State.

Binghamton University offers a first-of-its kind master's degree program in Sustainable Communities that draws on new and transdisciplinary approaches in sustainability to solve economic, social, and environmental challenges, with the ultimate goal of improving quality of life for people and the planet. A joint effort between the Anthropology, Geography, and Public Administration Departments, the 38-credit curriculum allows students to explore areas of sustainability and create pathways to job opportunities in different sectors. The program culminates in a Master of Arts (MA) degree or a Master of Science (MS) degree in Sustainable Communities.

Taking an interdisciplinary approach to sustainability

The Sustainable Communities program integrates the three pillars of sustainability -- environmental protection, economic vitality, and social equity -- to provide students with a balanced, holistic perspective on sustainability. Collaboration is essential to the program, which draws on a broad range of academic disciplines including anthropology, economics, environmental science, geography, geology, philosophy, political science, public administration, and sociology.

Graduates emerge with the knowledge, experience, and insight to become problem solvers and policy makers for institutions, organizations, and governments focused on a variety of sustainability issues, ranging from climate change and conservation to corporate citizenship and green infrastructure. They serve as analysts, consultants, and planners who are prepared to work across disciplines to develop and manage sustainable communities.

Learning inside and outside the classroom

Students launch their studies in the Sustainable Communities program with four core courses that introduce the study of the three pillars of sustainability: environmental protection, economic vitality, and social equity. Students think critically across complex, interconnected systems as they explore the interactions between these principles, ecology, environmental science, and governance. These four core courses are Sustainable Communities I and II; Research Methods; and the Sustainability Colloquium, which students repeat each semester.

Then, students take classes in the specific applications of strategy and theory, delving more deeply into environmental policy, economic development, and social equity. They gain additional skills in advanced methods by taking courses that focus on system thinking, design analysis, multi-objective policy analysis, and geographic information systems (GIS).

Students also select a minimum of two sustainability electives from a range of more than 15 courses in key sustainability knowledge areas. Depending on their interests, they might take electives focused on local government or non-profit management and administration; health, environmental, or social policy and planning; or development and impact analysis.

In the final semester of the program, students develop a thesis (MS) or capstone project (MA). Students team with faculty advisors and work to shape project goals, establish contacts in the broader community, and, ultimately, deliver a product that showcases professional growth and advances sustainability efforts.

Serving the community through research alongside outstanding faculty

Binghamton University is widely known for conducting research that has practical impacts on the community. Faculty and students in the Sustainable Communities program frequently collaborate on research projects that build on the university's close ties with community leaders and local businesses to supplement their field studies and gain experience working with diverse groups of residents.

The faculty in the Sustainable Communities program includes professors from the Departments of Anthropology, Geography, Public Administration, and Environmental Studies, supporting diverse research portfolios that aim to meet the needs of the greater Binghamton area, the nation, and the world. For example, Susan Appe, assistant professor of public administration, focuses her research primarily on government/non-profit relations in both developed and developing economies. Tim Frazier, associate professor of geography, studies climate change, vulnerability, and natural and man-made hazards, while Siobhan Hart, assistant professor of anthropology, concentrates on heritage practice, the politics of community recognition, and colonialism.

Financing your education

Graduate students at Binghamton University obtain financial support from a variety of sources, including loans, grants, assistantships, fellowships, scholarships, research and travel funding, federal work-study, and part-time employment. Learn more on Binghamton's website (

Location & Contact

Program in Sustainable Communities

Graduate School
Binghamton University, State University of New York

4400 Vestal Parkway East
Binghamton, NY 13902-6000
United States

George Homsy

Program Advisor

Phone: 607-777-9184

Mr. Ben Balkaya

Assistant Dean and Director

Phone: 607-777-2151
Fax: 607-777-2501

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Degrees & Awards

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Sustainable Development Master of Arts (MA)
      Master of Science (MS)
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees Not reported
    • Doctoral Degrees Not reported
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported
    • * Shows the number of degrees awarded for the last academic year that data was reported.
  • Earning Your Degree
    • Part-time study available? Yes
    • Evening/weekend programs available? Not reported
    • Distance learning programs available? Not reported
    • Terminal master's degree available? Not reported
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees Not reported
    • Doctoral Degrees Not reported
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported


73% of applicants are admitted.
  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied 15
    • Accepted 11
    • Acceptance Rate 73
    • Enrolled 6
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic Not Reported
    • Application Fee - International Not Reported
    • Electronic applications accepted? Not Reported
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Yes
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's Degreesundergraduate transcripts, minimum GPA of 3.0, personal statement, resume or curriculum vitae, and two letters of recommendation, professional writing sample or essay
    • Doctoral's DegreesNot Reported
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesNot Reported
    • International DegreesTOEFL, IELTS, or PTE

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students6
    • Female Percentage83%
    • Male Percentage17%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students6
    • Part-time Percentage17%
    • Full-time Percentage83%
  • Race/Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino0%
    • Black / African American17%
    • White / Caucasian67%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian17%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races-1%
    • Unknown or International Student0%


  • Faculty Breakdown
    • Total Faculty12
    • Full-time Percentage100%
    • Part-time Percentage0%
    • Female Percentage92%
    • Male Percentage8%



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