The Appropriate Technology (AT) concentration has been a program in the Technology Department since 1984 and for six years was known as Earth Studies, formerly under the Interdiciplinary Studies Department. It is currently the only program of its kind in the United States and is the oldest continuing operating university program for the study of appropriate technology in the country. It offers both undergraduate and graduate students a broad education in many technical areas. Students develop an in-depth understanding of solar, wind, and hydro power technologies, biofuels, sustainable transportation, resource management, and organic agriculture. Hands-on activities are emphasized. A strong technical foundation also includes the study of material processing, construction, CAD/drafting, design, manufacturing, computer technology, and electronics.
The AT Program offers:
Bachelor of Science in Technology with a concentration in Appropriate Technology
Undergraduate minor in Appropriate Technology
Master of Arts concentration in Appropriate Technology
Working in conjunction with the Appalachian State Appropriate Technology program is a student organization called the Appalachian Sustainable Energy Society (ASUSES). This club is affiliated with the United States' largest solar organization, the American Solar Energy Society(ASES). Club members sponsor, organize, and conduct a very successful solar home tour each year. They also offer free workshops and have been active introducing renewable energy into the public schools in Western North Carolina. Club members have the opportunity to attend the national ASES conference each year at a discounted price, and also have the opportunity to meet leaders in the field of renewable energy; making valuable contacts for internships or employment.