Sustainability Leadership


College of Architecture & the Built Environment




East Falls


On Campus




6 Months

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The Sustainability Leadership Certificate at Thomas Jefferson University prepares forward-thinking professionals to design and deliver sustainability initiatives in their current or future organizations. With our curriculum’s project-based approach, you will build vital skills in problem scoping, systems modeling, solution framing and change management and immediately apply them to the sustainability challenges facing your own organization or an assigned client.

As you progress through the program, your project advances with you, moving through stages from identifying and prioritizing key environmental challenges to developing and pitching an implementation plan for addressing them. Our faculty are prominent sustainability professionals ready to share their conceptual knowledge and practical experience as you master the strategies and tools needed to produce positive change in your field.

Scholarships are available.


This program is best suited to working professionals with at least 5 years of experience. Other applicants will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

The Sustainability Leadership Certificate is a STEM designated program (CIP Code 04.0902). 


FALL SEMESTER: 6 credits

What is sustainability and why is it essential for the future of humanity? Learn how to analyze and articulate the sustainability imperative across four dimensions—ecology, economy, experience, and equity—while examining sustainability considerations at multiple scales in the built environment, from cities and regions to individual buildings and interiors.

Learn how to apply systems thinking and modeling to analyze the dynamics of various environmental issues and to identify leverage points for effective interventions. Selected case studies provide an overview of current patterns of global environmental degradation and allow students to practice systems modeling. After developing these analytical skills, students are ready to complete a final assignment defining the dimensions of a real-world environmental issue facing their own organization or a client selected by the faculty.


Review and assess a variety of current business strategies and models for reorganizing companies, organizations, and governments around more sustainable practices. Students consider how strategies such as B Corporations, circular economies, and Triple Bottom Line Accounting and metrics such as life cycle assessment and greenhouse gas inventories can be combined to produce and measure progress towards sustainability. Drawing on these concepts and assessment options, students design a strategic approach to an environmental challenge facing their own organization or a client selected by the faculty.


Master the concepts, tools, and practices needed to advance a sustainability initiative from an initial plan to tangible results. After training in topics that range from project management to intrapreneurship to behavioral economics, students develop a detailed implementation plan and a compelling pitch to gain the support of key stakeholders in their own organization or of the clients in their assigned project.