Center for Sustainable Energy at Notre Dame

Energy Studies Minor


The Energy Studies Minor is open to undergraduate students in all majors and colleges at the University of Notre Dame. This minor is intended to prepare students to become successful leaders who understand the complexities of our energy challenges. Students may draw from both technical and non-technical resources to learn how to help move our country and the world toward a more sustainable energy future.

Two required courses (6 credits total), a capstone class (1 credit), and three elective courses (9 credits) are required to complete the minor. Approved electives will have the ENST attribute. Energy related courses studied abroad are acceptable with pre-approval.

Required Courses:

  • ENER 20101: Energy and Society - A course developing the basic ideas of energy and power and their applications from a quantitative and qualitative viewpoint.
  • ENER 20202: Business of Energy - A survey of energy resources, global climate change, basics of energy business and finance, energy economics, national and global energy policy, the psychology and ethics of energy consumption and behavior, and new urbanism.
  • Capstone requirement: Students should fulfill this one-credit requirement junior or senior year. There are two choices:
    • ENER 37001: Students complete an energy-related, hands-on experience prior to or during the capstone semester. Examples include a summer internship, work in a lab, research with a professor, an internship with the city of South Bend, or any other pre-approved activity. The capstone class includes monthly meetings to discuss energy topics, several short papers, and presentations by students about their experiences at the end of the semester.     
    • CSC Seminars: Students may enroll in an energy-focused seminar with the Center for Social Concerns with pre-approval. An example of this is CSC 33985, Energy, Climate, and Social Change. Some CSC Appalachia seminars may also qualify. 
  • Elective Courses:  A detailed listing of courses being offered for the Spring 2016 semester and historical offerings.

To search for current ESM class offerings, go to the Registrar's Office Class Search, click and hold down the SHIFT key (PCs) as you select all of the choices in the “subject” section of Class Search. Select the ENST attribute to see the flagged courses for restrictions and prerequisites. Other courses, including those taken abroad, may be acceptable with pre-approval.

For more information about the Energy Studies Minor (ESM), please contact Anne Berges Pillai, Education and Outreach Program Coordinator, at 574-631-9106 or

The ESM Academic Advisor is Dr. Peter Burns, The Henry J. Massman Professor of Civil Engineering and Geological Sciences, Director of the Energy Frontier Research Center, and Director of ND Energy. If you have questions for Dr. Burns, please contact Anne Berges Pillai to arrange a time to meet with him.

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