Sustainable Business at Aquinas College

Sustainable Business Courses

SB100 Industrial Ecology (3)

This course examines the advantages of nature-based industrial systems for humankind and the natural community. Intelligent approaches to sustainable energy and material systems are outlined and discussed. A wide variety of organizations that have begun a transition toward sustainable business practices are examined. Prerequisites: EL301 and BS201. This course is not accepted for the Social Science Distribution requirement.

SB110/BS110 Introduction to Business and Sustainability (3)

Sustainability's imperatives are reshaping the approaches and concerns of business as well as the ways in which business serves society. Using the lens of sustainability, this course explores businesses' impact and strategic responses to compelling and complex issues such as climate change, biodiversity loss, water depletion, "toxification" of the environment, social equity and others. The learning approach includes lectures, class discussions, group work, guest speakers and occasional field trips.

SB200 Sustainable Energy Systems (3)

This course examines production and consumption of various forms of sustainable energy appropriate for business. Subtopics include global and regional pollution issues, climate change, carbon sequestering, and energy efficiency. Renewable energy sources examined include solar, wind, fuel cells, hydrogen combustion, tidal, and ocean thermal. Prerequisite: EL301 or consent of instructor.

SB201 Sustainable Business Management (3)

The course examines intelligent approaches for provisioning goods and services that result in long-term business profitability, restored natural world integrity, and the emergence of vibrant and stable communities. We will discuss the variety of strategies and components necessary for effective sustainable business management and successful real-world organization transitions inside the movement. Prerequisite: SB100.

SB202 Environmental Regulatory Compliance (3)

Regulatory compliance strategies for business on local, state, and federal levels are outlined. Strategies for bringing small, medium, and large businesses in compliance with air, water, and solid-waste pollution regulations are discussed. Prerequisite: EL100

SB203 Sustainable Business in Corporations (3)

Sustainability offers new opportunities (and challenges) for corporations. This course examines how corporations develop and implement sustainability strategies to address these emerging opportunities and challenges. We look at established industries and emergent companies as well as non-profits employing cutting edge technologies, and consider both national and international implications and drivers. The first half of the course examines corporate environmental sustainability, and the second half of the course explores corporate social sustainability. Students will learn to apply the tools of strategic business management to problems of sustainability. Case study analysis comprises a critical component of this course. Prerequisite: SB100 

SB204 Sustainable Business Metrics and Reporting (3)

For many corporations, and organizations the starting point for addressing sustainability challenges is baseline data collection and reporting. Sustainability reporting enables companies and organizations to report environmental, social and economic information in a way that is similar to financial reporting. In recent years, the number of organizations issuing such reports has increased rapidly. This course is an introduction to sustainability reporting and metrics in both corporate and academic settings. You will learn about sustainability reporting guidelines and best practices through lectures and by reading several sustainability reports. After gaining this foundational knowledge, you will be developing a sustainability report for Aquinas College. Prerequisite: SB100

SB235/BS235 Social Entrepreneurship (3)

This course focuses on how social ventures are created, managed, evaluated and sustained. Emphasis is placed on understanding the opportunities and challenges of using one’s managerial and specific academic skills, as well as entrepreneurial talents, to help improve people’s lives by creating sustainable programs. A field component is involved. Prerequisite: BS201.

SB300/ES300 Environmental Economics and Policy (3)

Microeconomic theory and models of environmental economics are examined, such as common property resources, externalities, environmental accounting, contingent valuation, and maximum sustainable yield, along with the complex economic and social impacts of environmental policy. Prerequisite: EL100 and ES211

SB310 Special Topics in Sustainable Business (3)

Variable topics in sustainable business offered on an occasional basis.

SB315 Building Social Capital (3)

This course examines the role of social capital in building sustainable organizations and communities. The key elements and various forms of social capital will be explored by looking at the different ways that communities develop and how the human relationship with ecological systems can be sustained and enhanced. Ways to measure social capital will also be addressed in order to strengthen the understanding of this component of sustainable business and foster its application in the workplace. 

SB320 Sustainable Business Innovations Lab (3)

We will investigate and deploy triple top-line entrepreneurial innovation, effective organizational design, workplace innovation application skills, and research/analysis methods through in-class discussions as well as practice-based projects. Prerequisites: SB100, SB201, and SB315.

SB330 International Perspectives in Sustainable Business (3)

This course examines the deployment of sustainable business practices around the world. Class discussions, lectures and assignments will explore the variety of sustainable business models and practices which may be found in differently developing countries and regions, as well as introduce the complexities of a practicing sustainable business in a globalizing world. Students will be challenged to analyze the significance of cultural, political, and socioeconomic contexts in designing products, processes, and business strategies and models which will further sustainable business criteria. Each semester, a particular region/country receives more intense examination, culminating with a ten-twelve day field visit to that region/country immediately following the Academic Programs 247 end of the semester. A required field component for the course takes place in various locations throughout the regions/country. To participate in this required field component, students must complete the required forms and submit payments according to the dates outlined in the “Study Abroad for International Perspectives in Sustainable Business” contract and other materials posted for this field component on Course Connect. Prerequisites: SB100 and SB315 or consent of instructor.

SB346/EL346/PS346 Environmental Policy and Politics: Issues & Approaches

Course Description: Introduction to environmental policy as a focus of public policy. The forces and frameworks shaping environmental policy as well as the influence of various actors will be examined through analysis of key environmental issues. Prerequisites: PS 101 or EL100; or instructor permission

SB395 Cases in Sustainable Business (3)

This course offers an experiential approach to applying key sustainable business principles to current business challenges and opportunities. Topics examined each week will focus on a different issue related to recreating a sustainable management system for a fictional business. Writing, research and presentations will assess students' reading readiness as sustainable business professionals and agents of change. Prerequisites: SB201 and SB315 or Permission of Instructor.

SB397 Internship (3–6)

The student works with a business or organization during a selected semester to improve its sustainable business practices. Prerequisites: SB201, SB315, and approval of department chairperson.

SB398 Readings in Sustainable Business (3)

Individually negotiated list of readings in sustainable business as established by contract between the student and professor. Contracts are filed with the Registrar. Prerequisite: Approval of department chairperson.

SB399 Independent Project (3)

Individually negotiated project established by contract between student and professor. Contracts filed with the Registrar. Prerequisite: Approval of department chairperson.