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Food Security, Sustainability, and Justice

The Master of Science in Sustainable Food Systems prepares students to tackle the social and ecological complexities that create food insecurity.

Food is a human right

Food is a fundamental human right and central to sustainable, equitable, and just community development. Food is more than nutrients – it is an ecological relationship and an expression of cultural values.

Are you ready to engage the complex social and ecological dynamics of local food systems? Are you looking for ways to contribute to innovative initiatives and social movements for food security, sovereignty, and justice?

Clark’s Master of Science in Sustainable Food Systems will help you build the knowledge, skills, and experience you need to connect your career and your values. Our graduates work across the globe – in the public, nonprofit, and private sectors – to enhance sustainability and justice within food systems.

By taking foundational courses in social and environmental science and developing expertise in project management and monitoring and evaluation, students are prepared to transform institutions and systems to produce equitable and sustainable outcomes. Our dynamic studio courses and Global Learning Collaboratives provide hands-on experiences and know-how to take action.

food marketComplex challenges require authentic community engagement

Environmentally and socially just food systems require diverse forms of knowledge and abilities. Students learn from practitioners, policy-makers, and community members to work across intellectual, professional, and individual differences toward shared visions of sustainable and equitable food systems.

STEM Designated Program. If you are an international student with a Master’s in Sustainable Food Systems, you may be eligible to work in the US for up to 36 months on Optional Practical Training (OPT).

Critical Knowledge, Skills, and Experience: The Sustainable Food Systems Curriculum

Required Sustainable Food Systems Courses
(2 units)
  • Food Systems: Place, Politics and Policy
  • Food Security and Climate Change
Sustainability and Institutional Change
(2 units)
  • Sustainability Studies: Climate Change Adaptation
  • Social Change and Transformation: Community Power, Community Change
Skills for Social and Environmental Change
(2 units)
  • Project Management
  • Monitoring and Evaluation
  • Policy Analysis
  • Finance and Management
Methods of Inquiry and Subject Matter Electives
(2-3 units)
  • Choose from a list of Qualitative, Quantitative, or Spatial Analysis and Food Systems Electives.
  • Sample electives:
    • Political Economy of Food and the Ethics of Eating
    • Cultures of Exile
Required Common Seminars
(1 unit)
  • Intersectional Justice Movements (.5)
  • Principles and Ethics in Community Engagement (.5)
Experiential Learning and Inquiry
(1-3 units)
  • Farming for Justice: Urban Agriculture Studio
  • Global Learning Collaborative in Puerto Rico
  • Field Research in Ethiopia

Choice of three program tracks

10-unit track completed in three semesters (Fall or Spring start)

12-unit research track completed in four semesters, with students conducting primary research in the summer between their two years of study (Fall start only)

12-unit practice track completed in four semesters, with students engaging in a Global Learning Collaborative, either domestically or internationally (Fall start only)

Career Outcomes

farmer in field with tabletGain access to vast network of Clark alumni working to advance sustainability and justice in our food systems.

Clark graduates hold a wide range of jobs across a range of organizations in the food security and justice arenas, including:

  • Senior Food Security Analyst, Famine Early Warning Systems Network
  • Government Partnerships Officer, World Food Programme Berlin
  • Farm Manager and Food Justice Activist, Soul Fire Farm
  • Founder and Steward, WILDSEED Community Farm & Healing Village
  • Director of Food and Climate Systems, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Associate Professor, Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY Syracuse
  • Leadership Team Member, Maine Medical Center Food Pantry
  • Food Access Manager, Agricultural Institute of Marin
  • Director of Food Operations, Mastery Charter Schools
  • Communications Associate, The Hunger Project
  • Food and Community Cultivator, Purple Frog Gardens
  • Project Support Specialist, Flats Mentor Farm
  • Senior Information Systems Advisor, World Food Programme Haiti

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