High School Outreach

High School Outreach

The Faculty of Environmental Studies provides reach ahead resources and hands-on skill building to support and foster environmental and social justice education for the next generation. With our increasingly interconnected world and booming population, the need for environmental stewardship has never been greater. From wetland conservation and planning sustainable cities to pushing for social justice and bringing about corporate social responsibility, the resources we offer in FES will compliment your EcoSchool’s EcoMandate or assist in your planning for Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) activities.

Enhancing Environmental Education

Environmental Studies offers a series of dynamic programs to engage your students beyond the textbook by enhancing their environmental education. Whether you need an activity for your Eco-Schools’ conference, Eco-Fair, or to support your classroom curriculum, our programs can assist you in creating a dynamic learning opportunity. Sessions can be geared to support classes in Geography, Science, Philosophy & Ethics, Indigenous Studies, Social Justice, the Arts, Environment & Resource Management, Horticultural Studies and Civics & Careers. Knowing your EcoMandates and SHSM requirements are a focus for many aspects of your planning and our programming can be recognized for all levels of certification or level recognition.

At Your School

Environmental Speaker Series

Looking for a guest speaker for your classroom or conference? Our Environmental Studies Speaker Series may be the perfect solution. Our award winning professors and graduate students are experts in their field and happy to speak on a variety of topics that will fit directly into your curriculum planning. As we define the environment broadly, these lectures can be customized to fit any grade, an EcoSchool’s EcoMandate, or SHSM Categories.

Sample Guest Lectures

With Professor Leesa Fawcett, Associate Dean Students

With Professor Gail Fraser Undergraduate Program Director

With Professor Jose Etcheverry Co-Chair Sustainable Energy Initiative

With Professor Roger Keil York Chair in Global Sub/Urban Studies

Exciting Workshops

Careers in the Environment

This interactive workshop allows students to explore the environmental sector and the diverse career options available to environmental professionals through a variety of hands-on activities. A great workshop for your Careers classes looking to explore the environmental sector or your Environmental Science & Eco-Club students wondering what to do with their passion for environmental well-being and social justice.

Choose your own direction: Environmental Studies Degree at York University

This dynamic presentation explores the many benefits to studying the Environment at York University. It includes the unique features of the program itself, career outcomes, and how to get admitted.

Exhibitor at Your School Fair

Are you planning a conference, an Eco-Fair or a career fair at your school? Invite Environmental Studies to run a table in your conference’s marketplace to highlight York University’s Environmental Studies program or Environmental Career options.

At York University

YES! For a Day field trips to York University

Whether you’re teaching Canadian and World Issues, Geography, Environmental Science or Resource Management, Equity and Social Justice or covering relatable subjects in your curriculum, or just want to take your Eco-Club for a field trip, our YES! for a Day program can be tailored to your group! Learn about environmental studies and careers, foster a love of the environment, and meet SHSM and Eco-School requirements.

Your visit can include:

  • A lecture on a variety of environmental topics including resource management, sustainable energy, Geographic Information Systems, gender studies, and food policy
  • A Careers in the Environment Workshop
  • Environmental Studies Degree Information Session
  • EcoTour of York University’s Keele Campus: Explore our green campus with highlights of the University’s natural spaces (including green roof tops, community gardens and environmental lab spaces) and our award winning sustainability features such as LEED certified buildings and zero-waste management programs

Discovery Workshops

Discover our Las Nubes EcoCampus in Costa Rica

This one-hour session will take your students on a journey through the cultural and ecological beauty of the Las Nubes Forest Reservation, home to York University’s EcoCampus. Learn about species identification, Indigenous ways of knowing and community development from our Las Nubes research team.

Tend our gardens: the HNES Native Plant Garden at York University

Explore the beautiful Native Plant Garden outside the Environmental Studies building at York University, one of our green campus features. Learn about the invasive grasses, deadly nightshades and invasive weed species that flourish each year as our guide takes your class through a species identification scavenger hunt. Take back new skills to enhance or create your school’s own community garden.

Listening to the Land: An Introduction to Environmental Justice and Storytelling

Join the Indigenous Environmental Justice (IEJ) Project, led by Canadian Research Chair, Deborah McGregor, to explore stories on the land. How can Indigenous storytelling point to justice and environmental issues? How can Indigenous and non-Indigenous people move toward reconciliation through storytelling? What story can you tell?

Activities for Individual Students

What kind of environmental students are a good fit for Environmental Studies?

  • Passionate about the environment
  • Looking to make meaningful change in the world
  • Like to explore issues from a variety of perspectives including social, economic, legal, scientific, artistic, and political
  • Are interested in pursuing post-secondary education

YES! For a Day

Do you have a great student who is passionate about environmental and social change? Foster their love of the environment by encouraging them to take part in our York Environmental Studies (YES)! For a Day program which is catered to their interests.
RSVP here.

Students can:

  • Sit in on a first or second year Environmental Studies class
  • Meet with a current Environmental Studies student
  • Chat with an Admissions Representative
  • Participate in a personal environmental campus tour

Guiding Students to Post-Secondary options in Environmental Studies

Do you have a student interested in continuing their environmental education beyond high school? With so many different Environmental programs in Ontario, it can be tough to figure out which one is best for them or what to do next. Here is our quick guide:


The environment is a big topic which encompasses many perspectives and fields of interest. Students in early high school should be trying new things like taking different courses and joining clubs to fully determine what aspect of the environment (and ultimately environmental career path) interests them the most.


There are a lot of programs out there exploring the environment from scientific, economic, technical, social, political, and many other different points of view. In the later high school years, students should be starting to narrow down their interests.


Around November of grade 12, the Guidance Office will distribute OUAC pins to all graduating high school students. These pins will allow grade 12 students to log in to the OUAC and apply to the 21 Ontario universities. York University’s Environmental Studies’ OUAC code is YES.

Enhance Your Learning: Partners in Environmental Education

Ecosource's advanced teacher training: Approaches to enducating for sustainability

Are you interested in creating a vermicomposting system at your school? Do you want to learn more about growing food for your curriculum or how to build a solar oven? Do you want to understand environmental education policies in Ontario or strategies to fundraise for a school environmental project?

In 2017-2018, Ecosource and York University will once again be offering unique professional development certificate courses focused on Environmental and Sustainability Education. The program will offer hands-on learning to selected educators interested in learning about the latest tools and strategies for environmental education. Registration will begin in Fall 2017.

RSVP at ecosource.ca/certificate-course

Planet in Focus Eco-Film Lab at York U

Thursday, Feb 15 2018, 5 to 8:30PM, Educators of Grades 6 to 12

The environmental filmmaking workshops for York Region teachers and educators are back! Take part in a workshop that provides media literacy skills and support in incorporating filmmaking into the classroom. This workshop will provide an overview of film production and editing techniques as well as a context for working with students to create their own films. Extended online and in class resources are provided to participants.

Interested in joining the Eco lab workshop, visit:

Planet in Focus Student Film Festival at York U

Thursday, June 14 2018 at 10AM, Grades 6 to 12

Teachers, students and parents are invited to Planet in Focus’ red-carpet gala screening of short environmentally-themed films created by students. The screening programme is followed by a special guest speaker with an audience Q & A. The event is held in early June to commemorate United Nations World Environment Day. Potential topics include food security, climate change, waste reduction, energy conservation, water pollution or any environmental theme of your choice and are 4 minutes or under in length. Films are submitted for juried consideration in early May.

Interested in attending this PIF event, visit: