Metropolitan Food & Environmental Systems, BS

for the degree of Bachelor of Science Major in Metropolitan Food & Environmental Systems


department website: https://mfst.illinois.edu/


overview of college admissions & requirements: https://academics.aces.illinois.edu/prospective-students

college website: https://aces.illinois.edu/


program director: Megan Dailey, Ph.D., mdailey5@illinois.edu

program office: 215 Mumford Hall, 1301 W. Gregory Dr., Urbana IL

program phone: (217) 244-5567


The Metropolitan Food & Environmental Systems (MFST) program uses an interdisciplinary approach to understanding and implementing solutions in the area of urban food and environmental systems to ensure the sustainability of readily available nutritious foods for metropolitan populations. The students in this major will learn to understand the science and practice of food production and security across urban environmental, economic, social, and health contexts, while maintaining environmental sustainability. Students in this program will be prepared for jobs in impact areas related to food systems, such as government, non-governmental organizations, institutional food buyers, investment firms, financial and insurance companies, industry, retail, and food service. Alternatively, students may choose to pursue post-baccalaureate education, including law school and graduate school in food systems or in specific areas of the food system. Because the MFST curricula includes required training in STEM education, critical thinking, scientific literacy, communication and leadership, students will obtain the skills necessary to traverse an ever-changing job market and have the freedom to choose from many career-life options.


A minimum of 127 credit hours are required for graduation, including General Education Requirements and the MFST Core Curriculum. Because the core curriculum includes many College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES) departmental course requirements, the students in MFST have the unique opportunity to minor in many of the ACES departments or to delve deeper into a food system area of interest in addition to the core courses, including (but not limited to) advanced nutrition, plant or animal production, food processing, food safety, environmental sustainability, climate change, or landscape architecture.

for the degree of Bachelor of Science Major in Metropolitan Food & Environmental Systems


Prescribed Courses including Campus General Education

Composition I4
Writing and Research
Advanced Composition3
Leadership Communications
Cultural Studies9
Leadership Ethics & Society: Addressing Contemporary Challenges (US Minority)
The World Food Economy (Non-Western)
The Global Food Production Web
Western - select one course from campus approved list
Humanities & the Arts6
Humanity in the Food Web
Select one course from campus approved list
Natural Science and Technology8
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry Lab I
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry Lab II
Quantitative Reasoning I3-5
Select one course from campus approved list
Quantitative Reasoning II3-4
Applied Statistical Methods
Intro to Applied Statistics
Social & Behavioral Sciences7
ACE 100Introduction to Applied Microeconomics4
ACE 255Economics of Food and Environmental Justice3

Core Curriculum

Required Introductory Courses6-8
ACES 101Contemporary Issues in ACES0 or 2
or ACES 200 ACES Transfer Orientation
ACES 102Intro Sustainable Food Systems3
MFST 101Experiencing Food Systems3
Understanding Abiotic-Biotic Interactions Necessary for Food14-15
ANSC 100Intro to Animal Sciences4
CPSC 112Introduction to Crop Sciences3 or 4
or HORT 100 Introduction to Horticulture
NRES 102Introduction to NRES3
NRES 201Introductory Soils4
Human Nutrition
FSHN 120Contemporary Nutrition3
or FSHN 220 Principles of Nutrition
Economics I and II7
ACE 100Introduction to Applied Microeconomics (fulfills SBS requirement)4
ACE 255Economics of Food and Environmental Justice (fulfills SBS requirement)3
Food Production I and II - Choose two from the following list:5-8
Food Animal Production, Management, and Evaluation
Meat Production and Marketing (If you take ANSC 309, you must take a 4-hour upper-level course here or from another list)
Dairy Herd Management
Beef Production
Sheep Production
Pork Production
Poultry Science
Crop Growth and Management
Principles of Agroecology
Greenhouse Mgmt and Production
Vegetable Crop Production
Horticultural Physiology
Urban Food Production
Soil Fertility and Fertilizers
Urban Planning I - Choose one from the following list:3
Introduction to City Planning
Urban Informatics I
Urban Sustainability
Cities: Planning & Urban Life
Chicago: Planning & Urban Life
Ecology & Environmental Sustainability
Social Inequality and Planning
Urban Planning II - Choose one from the following list:3-4
The Modern American City
Planning for Healthy Cities
Economic Development Planning
Watershed Ecology and Planning
Urban Ecology
Housing & Urban Policy
Real Estate Development Fundamentals
Policy I - Choose one from the following list:3
Undergraduate Open Seminar (Food Ag & Pol)
Ag Policy & Leadership
Farm, Food & Environmental Policy
Local Planning, Gov't and Law
Policy II - Choose one from the following list:3-4
Food Law
Agricultural Law
Environmental Law
Energy Economics
Environment and Development
Agr and Food Policies
US Environ, Justic & Policy
State and Local Public Finance
Technology I - Choose one from the following list:2-4
ABE Principles: Biological
ABE Principles: Machine Syst
ABE Principles: Soil & Water
ABE Principles: Bioenvironment
ABE Principles: Bioprocessing
Life With Animals and Biotech
Introduction to Weed Science
Biotechnology in Agriculture
Genetic Engineering Lab
Data in Biology and Agriculture
Materials and Construction Sys
Wiring, Motors and Control Sys
Technology II - Choose one from the following list:2-3
Meat Science
Integrated Pest Management
Weed Mgt in Agronomic Crops
Weed Science Practicum (If you take CPSC 428, you must take a 4-hour upper-level course from another list)
Ugrad Bioinformatics Seminar (Intro to R Programming - if you take CPSC 491, you must take a 4-hour upper-level course from another list)
Food Processing Engineering
Principles of Food Technology
Package Engineering
Land and Water Mgt Systems
Residential Housing Design
Environ Control & HVAC Systems
Project Management
Elec Computer Ctrl Sys
Renewable Energy Applications
Chemical Applications Systems
Precision Agric Technology
Grain Bioprocessing Coproducts
Advanced Scientific Literacy - Choose one from the following list:3-4
Agri-food Strategic Management
Applied Animal Genetics
Math Modeling in Life Sciences
Applied Statistical Methods I
Community Nutrition
Inequality, Public Policy, and U.S. Families
Family Life Education
Quantitative Methods in NRES
Modeling Natural Resources
Environ Social Sci Res Meth
Urban Informatics II
GIS for Planners
Scenarios, Plans & Future Cities
Small Town/Rural Planning Workshop
Community Development Workshop
Social Ecology - Choose one from the following list:3
Food Marketing and Behavior
Inequality, Public Policy, and U.S. Families
Valuing Nature
Social Impact in Practice - Choose one from the following list:3-9
Collaborative Leadership
Applied Research Methods
Social Impact Learning Experience (MFST 450 & MFST 397 can only equal a total of 12 hours)
Experiential Learning Series7-16
MFST 301Experiential Learning Preparedness & Planning1
MFST 397Experiential Learning3 to 9
MFST 401Experiential Learning Review and Reflection3
Capstone3
MFST 498Metropolitan Food & Environmental Systems Capstone3
Total hours127