The Certificate in Sustainable Food Systems is available to students interested in taking an interdisciplinary approach to understanding, communicating and participating in finding solutions to the grand challenges we face for sustainable food production, access and utilization. Advances in agricultural and environmental sustainability, public health and nutrition, and economic and social well-being call for systemic and interdisciplinary research, which in turn require mechanisms for developing partnerships and collaboration. In response to these needs, the interdisciplinary graduate certificate program in Sustainable Food Systems (SFS) will expand opportunities for graduate training and faculty collaboration across several related units across campus.

If you would like to apply for the graduate certificate in Sustainable Food Systems, fill out the SFS Certificate Program of Study Form and the Curriculum Change Request Form (found on the Registrar’s Office webpage) and return both documents to the Certificate Coordinator at


Students are required to take a minimum of 13 credit hours to earn the Certificate in Sustainable Food Systems. Of these credit hours, at least 7 hours will be acquired from core courses in three different areas of emphasis: Foundational/ Systems Learning, Food Systems Service-Learning, and Professional Development.  At least 6 credit hours will be acquired from elective courses outside of the student’s home department. The certificate consists of the following components:


1. Foundational/Systems Learning Course: Students will be introduced to the concept of the food system as a complex adaptive system and explore additional concepts of scale, resiliency, connectivity, and interaction of the various parts of the system. The course will explore how different lenses and perspectives from different disciplines come together in solving problems and the importance of transdisciplinary approaches needed to solve these complex problems. Finally, the course will explore how mental and mathematical modeling approaches are used to facilitate holistic approaches to problem solving.

  • AESC 8310 – Food Systems Sustainability, Security and Resilience (3 cr)

2. Food Systems Service-Learning Courses: Choose one of the two courses; the alternate course can be used as an elective. Both courses aim to help students develop awareness of key food system issues in the local community and engage students in efforts to increase the sustainability of the local food system.

  • GEOG 6890 – Athens Urban Food Collective (3cr)
  • CRSS 6020S – Social Sustainability in Ag & Food Systems (3 cr)

3. Professional Development Course:  Choose one of the following courses, which support students to develop the skills necessary to address real-world problems and to communicate their understanding of food system processes to diverse audiences.

  • AGCM 8700 – Communicating Agricultural and Environmental Scientific Innovation (3 cr)
  • AGCM 8710 – Agriculture and Environmental Science Communication Theory (3cr)
  • AGCM 8750 – Effectively Communicating about Emerging Agricultural and Environmental Science Issues (3 cr)
  • GRSC 8200 – Communicating Research and Scholarship (1-2cr)

SFS Certificate Core Course Availability

Fall 2023AGCM 8750 (3cr)
Spring 2024AESC 8310 (3cr)
CRSS 6020s (3cr)


Student must complete two courses outside of home department (Select from the list of electives below, or seek approval for alternatives from the certificate coordinator):


Course Prefix & NumberTitle
AAEC 6640Food and Fiber Marketing and Merchandising
ADSC 6000Sustainability of Resilient Global Food Systems
AGCM 8100Culture Centered Communication and Engagement
AGCM 8710AES Communication Theory
ALDR 6600Global Issues in Agriculture and the Environment
ALDR 6710International Agricultural Development
ALDR 8080SCommunity Research Methods
ANTH 8515Institutional Dimensions of Sustainability
CRSS 6010Sustainable Agricultural Management
CRSS 6020SSocial Issues in Sustainable Agriculture
CRSS 6030Sensors in Precision Agriculture
CRSS 6050GIS for Nutrient and Energy Efficiency
CRSS 6060Advanced Topics in Precision Agriculture
CRSS 6220Sustainable Agriculture Systems
CRSS/HORT 6400Agro-ecology
CRSS/HORT 6590Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition
CRSS/ENTO 6740Integrated Pest Management
CRSS/HORT/ANTH/GEOG 6931Agroecology of Tropical America Field Trip
CRSS 8410Adv. Topics in Sustainable Agriculture Management
ENTO 6500EBiological Control of Insects (asynchonous course)
ENVM 6650Environmental Economics
ENVM 6800Water Resource Economics and Management
FANR 6020Sustainable Development
FANR 7860Natural Resource and Environmental Economics
FCID 6200Sustainability Seminar
FDST 6100Government Regulation of Food Safety & Qualty
FDST 7180EMarketing of Value-Added Foods
FISH 6550Sustainable Aquaculture
GEOG 6810Conservation Ecology and Resource Management
GEOG 6860Industrial Agro-Food Systems and Its Alternative
GEOG 6890Athens Urban Food Collective
HORT 6030SSustainable Community Food Production
HORT 6050Greenhouse Management I
HORT/ENTO 6125Organic Agricultural Systems
HORT 6440Environmental Physiology
HORT 6990Environmental Issues in Horticulture
HPAM 7050(E)Health Policy and Obesity
NUTR 6540Public Health Nutrition
NUTR 6630Cultural Aspects of Nutrition
NUTR 6640(E)Food Sanitation and Safety