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Academics at Colorado State

August 2012

With more than 150 programs of study in eight colleges, Colorado State University offers a world-class education at one of the nation’s top research universities.

Colleges, Schools and Academic Programs

Academic programs at CSU are among the best in the nation in quality, innovation, and achievement, with internationally known programs in infectious disease, agriculture, cancer research, atmospheric science, sustainability and clean energy, and much more.

Degree Programs

Academic and Co-curricular Programs

The University

Colorado State has received accolades as one of the top public universities in the United States for its outstanding education and affordability from U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, Forbes, and The Fiske Guide to Colleges. [read more]

Colleges, Departments and Programs

In March 2011, U.S. News and World Report ranked CSU's veterinary medicine professional doctorate program in the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences in the top three for programs of its kind throughout the United States.

In its 2011 "Education" issue, Popular Science listed the Engines and Energy Conversion Laboratory in CSU's College of Engineering as one of the 25 Most Awesome College Labs.

CSU's College of Business offers one of the best MBA programs in the nation, according to an October 2011 announcement by The Princeton Review. CSU's MBA program also was ranked No. 4 in The Princeton Review's Top 10 "Most Family Friendly" category.

The 2012 U.S. News and World Report "America's Best Colleges and Universities" edition named CSU in the top 20 for a university that makes writing a priority as a critical element of student success.

The graduate program in the Department of Occupational Therapy in the College of Health and Human Sciences was ranked No. 6 in the country in 2012 according to U.S. News and World Report. It moved up two spots from No. 8 in 2011.

The university ranks sixth in the nation for the number of graduate alumni serving in the Peace Corps and in the top 15 for undergraduates, according to the volunteer organization's 2012 rankings.

Colorado State's Department of Atmospheric Science is ranked No. 1 in the nation by the National Research Council for departments of atmospheric sciences, meteorology, and oceanography.

The Princeton Review named CSU as one of the nation's top colleges with a strong commitment to sustainability initiatives and activities because of its green initiatives, including a new minor in sustainability, a 5.3-megawatt solar plant, and biomass boiler.

More rankings and accolades

Faculty Spotlights

Colorado State faculty provide an enriched learning environment by working side-by-side with students and encouraging participation both in and outside the classroom. Our faculty are more than just experts in their fields — they’re committed to the personal and intellectual growth of their students and challenge them to achieve their highest potential.

June Medford
College of Natural Sciences

June Medford

Professor June Medford and her team in the Department of Biology are working to understand plants and their knowledge for human and environmental use. In 2012, her lab developed "plant sentinels" that detect environmental contaminants. In other words, her lab enabled a computer-designed detection trait to work in a plant by rewiring its natural signaling process so the plant turns from green to white when chemicals are detected in air or soil. This work — an important step in a long process — could eventually be used for a wide range of applications such as security in airports or monitoring for pollutants. [more]

James Pritchett
College of Agricultural Sciences

James Pritchett

James Pritchett, associate professor in the College of Agricultural Sciences' Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, is developing strategies for growing crops for small and medium sized farms with limited water resources. His research and outreach efforts target applied economic issues important to stakeholders in Colorado agriculture and throughout the West. Most recently, he's focused on water resources including how farms might make the best use of limited water resources, the economic activity generated by irrigated agriculture in rural regional economies, and the perceptions that households have for water use. His research also examines if crop insurance is an effective risk management tool for dryland wheat farmers, the economics of animal disease, and creating business plans for small and medium sized businesses. [more]

Scott Earley
College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

Scott Earley is a professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences. His studies have significant importance for understanding blood flow regulation and how to treat cardiovascular-related diseases, the leading cause of death in the United States. Earley's laboratory is developing a greater understanding of how transient receptor potential channels influence the function of smooth muscle cells, endothelial cells, and astrocytes, as part of his overall studies in cardiovascular physiology. He also is interested in how blood vessel function is influenced by factors produced by the the thin layer of cells that lines the interior surface of blood vessels. A great understanding of these aspects of cardiovascular physiology may help to develop new therapies for heart disease. [more]

Laura Bellows
College of Health and Human Sciences

Laura Bellows

Laura Bellows, Assistant Professor and Extension specialist in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, specializes in researching childhood obesity. Bellows is committed to exploring the behaviors and interventions that can provide positive influences — and ultimately chronic disease prevention — beginning in early childhood. In addition to dietary intake, physical activity, and weight status, Bellows looks at two additional behaviors — food preference and motor performance. Bellows' work is centered on two CSU-based interventions — Food Friends and Mighty Moves — that have successfully demonstrated increases in both children's willingness to try new foods and motor performance in preschool-aged children. She was recognized by President Obama in 2011 with the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. [more]

David Randall
College of Engineering

David Randall

Atmospheric Science professor David Randall was recognized in the spring of 2012 as one of two of the university's distinguished professors by CSU's President Tony Frank. Randall's research focuses on modeling studies of clouds and their role in the global climate system using numerical simulation. Randall is helping scientists who, for decades, have struggled to improve the way clouds are represented in climate models. Since the 1960s, scientists have used climate models to understand and predict future systematic changes in weather that affect the planet and in particular farmers, utilities, insurance companies and government agencies. Randall created a peer-reviewed major scientific journal for cloud modeling — JAMES or the Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems — with support from the National Science Foundation Center for Multiscale Modeling of Atmospheric Processes based at CSU. [more]

Maria Fernandez-Gimenez
Warner College of Natural Resources

Maria Fernandez-Gimenez

Maria Fernandez-Gimenez, Associate Professor in Forestry Rangeland Stewardship, researches both ecological and social dimensions of wildland ecosystems, focusing primarily on rangelands. Current and past projects have addressed community-based and collaborative natural resource management; traditional and local ecological knowledge; pastoralism and pastoral development; participatory research; effects of livestock grazing and other disturbances on the structure and function of rangeland ecosystems. Fernandez-Gimenez continues to do research and advise NGOs and government organizations on rangeland management and policy issues in Mongolia, as well as in the western U.S. [more]

Doug Hoffman
College of Business

Doug Hoffman

Doug Hoffman is a Professor of Marketing in the College of Business who specializes in services marketing. Hoffman has been recognized for his teaching innovation and excellence with 14 teaching awards. Hoffman founded the College of Business' Master Teacher Initiative, which embraces professional development opportunities and enhances the quality of teaching within the college. His institute model has been adopted by all other colleges on campus and has been singled out by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) as a benchmark program for other universities to follow. [more]

Christopher Fisher
College of Liberal Arts

Christopher Fishe

Anthropology professor Christopher Fisher is using LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) technology to document thousands of architectural features from an ancient city in western Mexico dating back to A.D. 1000 to A.D. 1520. LiDAR technology allows Fisher and his team to "see" beneath the tree canopy at the site, revealing more than 20,000 architectural features and a highly organized city that is far more complex and included more people than previous research in the region suggested. The technology also accelerates the surveying process, provides insights into the formation of the pre-Hispanic Purépecha (Tarascan) Empire and unravels connections between complex societies and climate change. [more]

Leading in Research and Discovery

As one of the nation's leading research universities, Colorado State sets the standard in scholarship and discovery. Our faculty are researching and tackling critical global issues and our students have the opportunity to work alongside faculty and participate in cutting-edge research as early as their freshman year.

Research Highlights

Robin Reid, director of the Center for Collaborative Conservation, and her co-authors were awarded the 2012 ESA Sustainability Science Award. The award is given annually to authors of a peer reviewed paper published in the past five years that makes the greatest contribution to the emerging science of ecosystem and regional sustainability through the integration of ecological and social sciences. Her work was featured on 60 Minutes: Into the Wild in 2012.

University veterinarians are offering a new, mobile service that provides unique, holistic and tailored veterinary care to equine athletes from birth through retirement. The Equine Sports Medicine program, a pioneer in this new veterinary field, offers clients state-of-the-art diagnostics and treatment for musculoskeletal, respiratory, cardiovascular, endocrine and medical issues. In addition, the program offers CSU veterinary students exciting learning opportunities.

Amy Prieto, professor of chemistry, was honored at the White House with a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for her work to develop new methods to create a battery that could revolutionize the hybrid/electric vehicle industry.

University tuberculosis researchers received five Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grants, totaling about $3.65 million, for projects that span research areas from developing research models that better mimic the impact of tuberculosis infection in humans, to developing tuberculosis-detecting tests that can be used in countries with few resources.

Alan Knapp, a biology professor and senior ecologist with the Graduate Degree Program in Ecology, is the principal investigator on $3.7 million National Science Foundation project hat will experimentally impose severe drought in Great Plains grasslands and evaluate how the landscape responds - the first large-scale project of its kind. The project is an outcome of a research working group supported by Colorado State’s School of Global Environmental Sustainability.

Diana Wall, University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Biology, was one of only four scientists tapped for the U.S. Antarctic Program's Blue Ribbon Panel, established by the Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Science Foundation, on the future of the U.S. role in Antarctica. The panel’s final report was released in July 2012.


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