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Global & Environmental Studies Certificate (GESC)

A Loomis student whose passion and interest lie in acquiring and exploring a greater understanding of the world and the environment may pursue a course of study which culminates in the awarding of the Global & Environmental Studies Certificate. The GESC recognizes coursework, extracurricular engagement, travel, and experiential learning focused on fulfilling the mission of the school in advancing “the development of students in mind, body, and spirit through rigorous academic programs, an inclusive community, and an emphasis on engaged citizenship.” The GESC is awarded to seniors at the time of Commencement and is noted on their official transcript.

To express your interest in pursuing the GESC, or for more information, please contact the certificate coordinator, Rachel Engelke.


A minimum of six courses (including a world history course) to be selected from the GESC list of approved courses, taken from at least two different departments, in addition to language study through the fourth level. (Students pursuing two languages should speak with the director of the Alvord Center regarding credit towards the certificate.) All such courses are denoted in each departmental section of the course book with the designation GESC, and are listed below.

  • Foreign Language study through the fourth level.
  • Successful completion of the required core GESC Senior Seminar, a series of five evening events, to be scheduled and announced each year by the director.
  • A two-week or longer experiential education program focused on international, multicultural, or environmental issues. This experience will be crafted and organized by the student with the approval of the center. The center’s International Education Programs are designed to fulfill this requirement though students may, with approval, complete the requirement with third-party programs or independently, either internationally or domestically.
  • Elective: Completion of one of the following, at the discretion of the student and with the approval of the director
    • Additional coursework (a seventh course)
    • Additional Foreign Language study (a fifth level course)
    • Additional experiential education
    • Gilchrist Environmental Fellowship
    • Norton Center special project
    • Agriculture Proctor
    • Environmental Proctor
    • Model UN participation
    • World Bulletin
    • Debate
    • Community service (80 hours)
    • Commitment to other related activities with the approval of the director

In order to successfully meet these requirements, students who wish to pursue the GESC should identify themselves to their advisor and to the director of the Alvord Center as early in their Loomis career as possible, but no later than the beginning of winter term of their junior year. The center, along with a student’s advisor and the director of studies, will assist students in completing a plan for meeting the above requirements.


Loomis Chaffee courses that have qualified towards earning the Global Studies Certificate:

English IV: Graphic Novel
English IV: Literature and the Environment
English IV: Race, Roles, and Religion
English IV: Voices of Dissent
CL English IV: Contemporary Literature
CL English IV: Writing from the Arab World

CL Chinese V
CL Chinese VI: Modern China through Literature
CL Chinese VI: Contemporary Issues in China
French V: The Francophone World
French V: Modern Writers
French V: Cinema
CL French V
CL French VI
Latin IV/V: Augustan Poets (this and the following Latin term courses count as additional GESC courses when taken after CL Latin)
Latin IV/V: Roman Comedy
Latin IV/V: Roman Satire
Latin IV/V: Historians at Rome
Latin IV/V: Cicero 6
Latin IV/V: Catullus
CL Latin IV/V (when taken after Latin term courses, as a fifth level course)
Spanish V: Latin American Civilization
Spanish V: Latin American Short Story
Spanish V: Cinema
CL Spanish Literature V
CL Spanish VI
Global, Digital Cultures

History, Philosophy, Religious Studies, and Social Science: 
Economics: Macroeconomics
Experiential Investment and Economics
CL Economics
World History: The Making of Our Modern World
History from the Inside Out: Uncovering the Roots and Legacies of the Early Modern World
Global Human Rights: Protection and Abuse
CL European History
The Middle East: A History of Peace and Conflict
Germany and the Holocaust
Modern African History: Riot, Rebellion, and Freedom
Modern South Asia
The World at War
History of Sport in Society
International Relations
CL History Seminar: Globalization
CL Comparative Government and Politics
Ancient Philosophy
Topics in Ethical Theory
Developmental Psychology
Religious Diversity in Contemporary America
Philosophy of Nonviolence
Children of Abraham: Moses, Jesus and Mohammed
Hinduism and Buddhism


CL Environmental Science
Human Populations: Impact and Sustainability
Sustainability: Soil, Water and Agriculture
Advanced Studies in Science: Guided Research Projects in Environmental Sustainability

Visual Arts: 
Ceramics I

Acting: Shakespeare
Masks in Culture and History

Music and Social Action Worldwide
Concert Choir
Chamber Singers
World Percussion Class