Lake Superior College is proud to announce a new Associate of Science Degree in Eco-Entrepreneurship to begin Fall of 2019. This new degree program will integrate environmental sustainability (science), hands-on field learning (applied science), and entrepreneurship (business) with social analysis focused on creating sustainable and equitable community development. As an Associate of Science degree that completes the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum, students will gain knowledge and skills that they may apply directly to business development, management, and operation or use in transferring to a Baccalaureate degree. The Eco-Entrepreneurship Program will have an initial focus on sustainable food and energy systems but will expand to cover many other facets of sustainable development in the coming years.
As part of the new Eco-Entrepreneurship Program, Lake Superior College will also launch a new ‘Living Laboratory’ field site on campus to demonstrate diverse regenerative agriculture and sustainable development activities. Initially, the Living Lab will feature a two-acre farm site, approximately 6,000 ft2 of greenhouse space and an indoor washing, processing, packaging and storage facility. This new operation will showcase leading sustainable agriculture production methods as well as associated processing, marketing and distribution systems. It will also demonstrate several renewable energy and efficiency technologies, provide educational content for the new Eco-Entrepreneurship Program, host related community training programs, and support many other existing courses and degree programs at LSC. Finally, this infrastructure will be used to help coordinate activities within our regional food system and foster more local food production and consumption.
Dr. Randel Hanson and Dr. Michael Mageau will lead the new Eco-Entrepreneurship Program and the associated Living Laboratory field site. Dr. Hanson received a Ph.D. in American Environmental Studies from the University of Minnesota and founded and directed the UMD Land Lab for the past decade, where his teaching and research focused on community based regenerative agriculture and place-based food systems. Dr. Mageau received his Ph.D. in Environmental Science and Sustainable Development from the University of Maryland. For the past 20 years he directed UMD’s interdisciplinary degree program in Environment and Sustainability where his teaching and research focused on ecological economics, sustainable energy systems and controlled environmental agriculture.
“We are excited to add the Eco-Entrepreneurship program to the over 90 other programs offered at Lake Superior College,” said Michael Seymour, Vice-President of Academic and Student Affairs. “This program is a perfect fit within our Liberal Arts and Sciences Division. The program compliments our sustainability efforts and will be another niche in attracting students to Duluth. As always, we are working closely with community partners to ensure the program meets their needs. Randy and Mike have an outstanding reputation and are national leaders in this field, so our students and region will benefit tremendously from their knowledge, passion and experience.”