In response to the environmental challenges of the 21st century, including climate change, public and private sectors worldwide are seeking to “green” their practices. Today there is an increasing demand for environmental professionals who have a holistic understanding of the complex interactions that lead to environmental problems and are able to collaborate with multiple disciplines to identify and implement sustainable best practices.

The Sustainable Environmental Systems program is a 40-credit, STEM-designated Master of Science. Applicants who hold a five-year B.Arch or existing graduate degree are eligible for a 30-credit post professional accelerated degree.   


Sustainable Environmental Systems

SES Students learn the interdisciplinary skills needed to assess contemporary environmental issues; catalyze innovative environmental problem solving; uphold environmental and social justice; and engage diverse stakeholders in designing and developing sustainable plans, policies, and communities. Graduates are prepared to take on a range of roles as policy analysts, sustainability consultants, low impact developers, researchers, and advocates, collaborating with environmental scientists, policymakers and communities.

Students may choose elective courses from the broad range of those available in the SES program, or from any of the other three programs within GCPE: City and Regional Planning; Historic Preservation; and Urban Placemaking and Management. Students may also choose elective courses from GCPE sister programs: Construction Management; Facilities Management; and Real Estate Practice.

Our curriculum, which is focused on the integration of environmental science, policy, and design covers:

  • Integrated urban systems designs for water, energy, and solid waste
  • Sustainable community development
  • Environmental and social justice
  • Inter and trans-disciplinary study


Pratt enjoys a regular relationship with several civic and non-profit organizations with a citywide mission, representing over 30 positions altogether. These fellowships are associated with scholarships, and include the Center for Urban Pedagogy, Municipal Art Society, NYC Environmental Justice Alliance, Pratt Center (described below), and Project for Public Spaces. Pratt’s track record and connections are such that there are numerous other internship opportunities, which are also listed.


  • Through their studies in the Sustainable Environmental Systems program, students will:
  • Develop the ability to assess and critically examine environmental issues related to water and air quality, solid waste management, urban energy systems, and building performance.
  • Demonstrate a foundational understanding of the legal, economic and regulatory framework of federal, state, and New York City environmental policy and review.
  • Learn stakeholder engagement and uphold social and environmental justice while demonstrating the ability to engage in collaborative, interdisciplinary, environmental problem solving.
  • Develop an understanding of sustainable community development.
  • Design sustainable environmental policies and plans with verifiable indicators and metrics.
  • Understand and argue the cost of environmental externalities associated with current economic policy and development.
  • Develop a baseline level of technical proficiency and professional communication skills: written, oral, and visual.


Applicants from all fields of study are encouraged to apply. They must submit a writing sample or portfolio, depending on their background. The writing sample or portfolio should indicate an interest in or awareness of issues to be addressed in this program. The GMAT is optional. Applications will be accepted after the deadline if there is room.

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Visit the department at one of our upcoming Open Houses:

Tuesday, September 24, 5-6 PM, tour and discussion with current students, followed by meeting with program administrators from 6-7 PM

Tuesday, October 22, 5-6 PM, tour and discussion with current students, followed by meeting with program administrators from 6-7 PM

Meet in Higgins Hall North, Room 206, 61 St. James Place at the corner of Lafayette Avenue. RSVP with Sandra Hetzel, Assistant to the Chair, shetzel@pratt.edu.