Message from the Director

Dr. Allen RutherfordWelcome to the LSU School of Renewable Natural Resources!  We are always in search of students that are looking for unique educational experiences and are passionate about the environment. Alumni of the School work in a variety of natural resource-related professions, including state and federal agencies, non-governmental organizations, and industry.  Many of our students go on to graduate, law, or veterinary schools.

The School offers a diversity of undergraduate and graduate degree programs including forest resource management, forest enterprise, forest products, fisheries and aquaculture, wildlife ecology, conservation biology, watershed science, and pre-veterinary medicine. We have a faculty that is student-oriented and dedicated to student professional development. Our programs offer learning environments that include classroom and laboratory instruction, and because most of our careers are out of the office, our students spend much of their time in the field.  We also encourage students to take part in our undergraduate research program, which allows you to work with a research professor to design and conduct research.

Since March 2020 we have had to alter our curriculum due to the Covid-19 outbreak. At that time, we transitioned most of our in-person classes to an online format. We have always urged RNR students to take part in experiences that suit their interests and support their professional career goals. Integral to all our programs have been hands-on experiences that, we feel, help students connect with activities beyond the traditional classroom. We urge students to take part in internships, independent research, local and national conferences, and community-oriented activities. Given the current health concerns, we have had to carefully examine what we can continue to do safely.  In response, we have continued most of our historic teaching activities by creating smaller laboratory classes, doing field work closer to campus, and creating virtual field experiences. We look forward to a time when we can resume our historic teaching and research activities.

Even with these limitations, we still face global natural resource challenges that range from climate change to resource sustainability. Water pollution and eutrophication continue to create problems for downstream users. The potential for climate change to alter biodiversity, along with land-use changes associated with increasing population densities will continue to stress natural resources worldwide. These, and other natural resource challenges, require a well-trained professional workforce for the foreseeable future. We believe that the School is uniquely positioned to train the next generation of natural resource professionals. I invite you to explore our site to learn more about the diversity of programs we offer, and I urge you to consider becoming a part of our Renewable Natural Resources program.

We are committed to teaching, research, and service excellence. Most of our areas of concentration are accredited by the Society of American Foresters and graduates with B.S. Degrees in Natural Resource Ecology and Management are qualified to become certified Wildlife or Fisheries biologist. Our award-winning faculty members are committed mentors and educators as well as outstanding scholars in their disciplines. We are dedicated to your success.

If you would like additional information, do not hesitate to contact me. I would be happy to answer any questions you have. I wish you the best in the decisions you are making about your future and hope the LSU School of Renewable Natural Resources will be part of that future.

Exciting things are happening in the LSU School of Renewable Natural Resources!


D. Allen Rutherford