Dip into Sustainable Design this summer!

About the MA Program

Looking to take a dip this summer — into sustainable design? We’re offering three sustainability-focused courses this summer!

If you’re considering joining our fully online MA in Sustainable Design program, this it is a good chance to engage with us and see what it’s like to learn online.  If not, it’s a wonderful way to learn more about sustainability!

Introduction to Biomimicry: A Sustainable Design Methodology

Course Description

Nature offers boundless inspiration for sustainable design, but how do we access the wealth of biological information available and apply it effectively to design? This course provides an introduction to biomimicry, a new discipline that emulates nature’s best ideas and blueprints in order to solve human design challenges. Each week you’ll get outside to explore nature and learn a key biomimicry design concept that you’ll then apply to develop a novel biomimetic design.

This is a 4-week no-credit course (you have 5 weeks to complete) that will take 4-8 hours per week. Class starts June 7.

ISSP-SEA (Sustainability Excellence Associate) Test Prep

Course Description

The demand for skilled sustainability practitioners has grown exponentially in the past three decades. As businesses, nonprofits, and governments worldwide have adopted sustainability-focused practices, the need for professionals with the expertise to guide them has never been greater. To build sustainability professionals’ credibility in the eyes of clients, colleagues, employers, and the public, the International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP) developed standards of practice for sustainability professionals. This course will help prepare professionals applying sustainability to their industries for the ISSP-SEA (Sustainability Excellence Associate) exam.

This is a 5-week no-credit course that will take 4-8 hours per week. Class starts June 7.

Better Business through Sustainability: Strategies for Positive Impacts 

Course Description

Bring your small business or organization up to speed, sustainably speaking. This course will help students develop confidence in making decisions and setting goals around sustainability for businesses or organizations. Participants will learn to think in life-cycles of a product or business; better understand the community and customer’s needs through empathy; compare certifications and claims to avoid greenwashing practices; and better communicate their efforts around sustainability as a business. 

This is a 7-week no-credit course. Class starts June 16.


While you’re there, check out the (fully online) Sustainable Design courses we’re offering this fall!

If you have questions about the MA in Sustainable Design program, feel free to email me. Applications for Fall 2021 are due June 1.

Denise DeLuca / Director

Denise DeLuca is the Director of MCAD’s Sustainable Design program. She was co-founder of BCI: Biomimicry Creative for Innovation, a network of creative professional change agents driving ecological thinking for radical transformation. Denise is author of the book Re-Aligning with Nature: Ecological Thinking for Radical Transformation, which was illustrated by MASD alum Stephanie Koehler. She also teaches with the Amani Institute.

Denise’s previous roles include Education Director for the International Living Future Institute, Project Manager for Swedish Biomimetics 3000, and Outreach Director for The Biomimicry Institute. Denise is a licensed civil engineer (PE) and holds a master’s degree in civil and environmental engineering with a focus on modeling landscape-scale surface and groundwater interactions.  In addition, Denise is a Biomimicry Fellow and a member of the Advisory Council of The Biomimicry InstituteBoard Member of the International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP), on the editorial board of the Journal of Bionic Engineering, and an Expert with Katerva. Denise is based in Oregon.

contact:  [email protected]