Graduates of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment are required to take a ‘capstone course,’ which helps students integrate their classroom instruction, extended field experience, internship and applied research experiences. For NRES majors the capstone experience is NRE 471, Senior Problem in Natural Resources. In this course, students examine in detail a natural resource or environmental issue in Kentucky. Through a team-approach, students conduct extensive field work, research, analysis, and prepare a report which includes recommendations to address the targeted issue. Their work culminates in one or more publications and an oral presentation to other UK students, faculty, and off-campus stakeholders. The capstone course gives students the opportunity to work closely with natural resource professionals and community stakeholders in a pre-professional context, providing a bridge between the classroom and the workplace. During this experience, NRES students enhance their workplace skills, professionalism, teamwork, and technical expertise.

Natural resource capstone classes have covered a myriad of topics over the years, including elk reintroduction in Eastern Kentucky, campus sustainability, solid waste management at UK, and environmental impacts of the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.


2018 Floracliff Nature Sanctuary

Publications: 2018 Captsone Report 


2016 Bluegrass Greensource

Publications: 2016 Captsone Report

2015 McConnell Springs Nature Park: An Urban Gem of Ecological Diversity

Publications: 2015 Captsone Report

2014 Evaluating the UK-LFUCG Arboretum and State Botanical Garden

Publications: 2014 Capstone Report

2013 "Urban Forestry in Lexington, KY"
Publications: 2013 Capstone Report


There was not a course in calendar year 2012 because the meeting pattern changed from Fall to Spring.

2011 "Assessing Water Quality in the Inner Bluegrass"

Publications: 2011 Summary

2010 “Improving Habitat for Native Wildlife in Fayette County, Kentucky”

Publications: 2010 Summary