Energy Studies


From Energy/Future 2030, Yale Climate & Energy Institute Fifth Annual Conference, organized by Yale Energy Scholars


Thirty-six students from the Yale Class of 2019 were accepted into the Energy Studies Multidisciplinary Academic Program during the fall enrollment period. This incoming group of sophomores is the largest class of energy scholars since the program started in 2013, and will be the first to pass through the new Energy Studies gateway course, Energy Technology and Society (APHY 100b).  Information about the gateway course, including a syllabus, is now available on Yale Classes*v2. 

The spring term exit seminar for seniors in Energy Studies will be the graduate seminar, G&G 746b, Seminar in Climate & Energy, which will be devoted to the topic, “Quantifying risks and opportunities of climate change.” The seminar will meet on Wednesdays from 1 to 2:45 p.m. in Kline Geology Lab and will feature a number of guest lectures open to all Energy Studies scholars.  

The Spring Term information session for Energy Studies was held on Thursday, January 19, from 4:30 to 5 p.m. in the Kline Geology Lab Auditorium (KGL 123). Slides presented at the session can be downloaded at the link under GENERAL INFORMATION. 

Please SAVE THE DATE of April 6 on your calendar: Energy Studies and the Political Science Department will host correspondent Coral Davenport that day under the Poynter Fellowship in Journalism. Ms Davenport covers energy and climate change policy for The New York Times

The Yale Fossil Fuels Field Trip will take place on March 23-24. The field trip will leave from New Haven by chartered bus early on the morning of Thursday, March 23, and on the first day will visit a surface coal mine in Tamaqua, Pennsylvania, operated by Lehigh Anthraciteand an underground coal mine museum in nearby Lansford. On Friday, the trip will visit shale-gas production sites in Susquehanna County near Montrose, PA, and a natural-gas compressor station operated by the energy company Williams. If there is sufficient time on Friday, the trip will visit Marcellus, NY, to see the Marcellus Shale formation where it outcrops at the surface. The trip will be back in New Haven Friday evening. All student costs will be covered by the Energy Studies program. If you would like to join the trip, please send a message to with the subject line: 2017 Fossil Fuels Field Trip.

Energy Studies hosts a bi-weekly dinner for students and faculty every other Monday, from 6:30 to 8pm, in the Saybrook College Fellows Lounge. The series started on January 30, and will continue throughout the term. You can sign up for one of the dinners by e-mail to


The Energy Studies Undergraduate Scholars program was started in the Fall of 2013 by Yale Climate & Energy Institute. With the closing of the institute in June of 2016, Energy Studies continued as a multidisciplinary academic program in Yale College. A brief description of the background and content of the program is given below (under ENERGY STUDIES). The following links contain information about the academic requirements for the program and instructions for applying, along with the 2016-17 program brochure and slides presented at the Fall 2016 Energy Studies information session. 

Courses & Capstone Projects
Instructions for Applicants
Energy Studies 2016-17 Brochure
Energy Studies Spring 2017 Information Session

Spring Term 2017 Office Hours [NEW]: Tu 2 to 4pm and Th 10am to noon in KGL 308

For appointments or questions, contact with the subject line: ENERGY STUDIES


Energy Studies is a multidisciplinary academic program (MAP) in Yale College. The curriculum is designed to provide selected undergraduates with the knowledge and skills needed for advanced studies, leadership, and success in energy-related fields. A major challenge for the world in the 21st century is to develop and deploy a more sustainable energy system: one that can provide convenient, affordable energy for all of the world’s population, in ways that are less harmful to health and the environment than today’s systems based largely on the combustion of fossil fuels. According to the International Energy Agency, about 1.2 billion people around the world remain without electricity, and 2.7 billion put their health at risk by the traditional use of solid biomass for cooking. Moreover, carbon-dioxide emissions from the world’s energy systems remain by far the leading contributor to man-made climate change. Multidisciplinary study of these and other issues of the past, present, and possible futures of the world’s energy systems forms the content of Energy Studies.

In addition to their participation in the program, Energy Studies Scholars must complete the requirements of a Yale College major. Yale College does not offer a major in energy studies.

Admission to the Energy Studies program is by application, normally in the sophomore year. See the Instructions for Applicants link at the top. For the 2016-17 academic year, the application process will be run in the fall, in coordination with the other multidisciplinary academic programs. Information about the enrollment process will be announced by the Yale College Dean’s Office. Accepted students are assigned a mentor from one of the departments associated with Energy Studies. Upon successful completion of the requirements, students receive a document at graduation, acknowledging their completion of the Energy Studies program; this becomes part of a student’s academic record at Yale and is recorded by the Registrar’s Office. Graduates of the program are invited to join the Yale Alumni in Energy organization.

Undergraduate scholars in Energy Studies are expected to complete one course in each of the three tracks defining the multidisciplinary curriculum, plus three electives from a list of eligible courses (see the link Courses and Capstone Projects at the top of this page). Of these six courses, three must be outside the department of the student’s major. For double majors, this requirement is modified as follows: three courses from each of the student’s two majors can be used to satisfy program requirements, provided that the courses meet the distributional requirements across the three areas (tracks) of Energy Studies.

The capstone of the program is a senior project, which may take the form of a traditional senior essay (with permission, the student’s senior essay in the major may fulfill this requirement); a group project culminating in a substantial report; or a summer job or internship in an energy-related field with a written report. Jobs and internships are coordinated through the Energy Studies director of undergraduate studies, the student’s Energy Studies mentor and the Yale College Center for International and Professional Experience.

Energy Studies courses are organized into three areas or tracks:

(I) Energy Science and Technology,

(II) Energy and the Environment, and 

(III) Energy and Society: Economic, Political and Social Issues.

Students normally complete electives in at least two of the three areas.