Aviation Specialization


Work in the aviation industry

Geography and Environmental Management, Aviation Specialization

Bachelor of Environmental Studies (BES)

Gain the skills and expertise you need to excel in a career in the growing aviation or aerospace industries.

Earn a three or four year Bachelor of Environmental Studies from one of Canada's top-ranked geography departments, where you'll learn how to use tools such as geographic information systems and remote sensing, interpret weather patterns, read multi-layer maps, understand the impact of tourism, and advocate for sustainable practices within the aviation industry.

Take advantage of the program’s flexibility and enroll in independent flight training near you during your studies or after graduation, or select the co-op program, and graduate with a prestigious Waterloo degree and up to 20 months of paid work experience. The choice is yours.

While no previous flying experience is required, credit may be awarded to students with a Canadian Private Pilot License.

Sample courses

  • AVIA 100: Introduction to Aviation (take in first year as your program elective)
  • GEOG 207: Climate Change Fundamentals
  • GEOG 281: Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • AVIA 270/GEOG 270: Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) Knowledge Requirements
  • AVIA 310: Human Factors in Aviation
  • GEOG 309: Physical Climatology
  • GEOG 318: Spatial Analysis


  • Required courses:
    • Six Grade 12 U or M courses, including any Grade 12 U English (minimum final grade of 70% in English is required)
  • Admissions average: Low 80s

Visit our Undergraduate Programs website for more admissions information.

Life as a Geography and Environmental Management student

Remote video URL

Co-op student of the year, Aaron, explains that if you put in the effort, your employer will trust you to go beyond the boundaries of a typical work term.

Cassandra sitting in a boat that's travelling to glaciers in the Canadian Arctic

Photo by Jeff Topham, One Ocen Expeditions

It’s not every day that you come face to face with polar bears. Or hike untouched moraines. Or stand among glaciers—witnessing first-hand the devastating effects of climate change, as Cassandra experienced while travelling across Nunavut and Greenland.