About the department

Natural Resource Management Department is one of the seven departments in College of Agriculture and Environmental Science, Arsi University, which runs three important academic programs, namely Natural Resource Management (NRM), Soil Resource and Watershed Management (SRWM) and Forestry (FOR) at undergraduate level.

Natural Resources are the fundamental building blocks of human civilization. They are driving force for economic development and societal well being. The responsibility of this department in economic development and societal well being is much more critically important for developing countries like Ethiopia whose populations are predominantly rural dwellers and directly dependent on natural resources for subsistence. The department thus prepares students not only to care for the natural resources (soil, forest, land and water resources), but also to serve the people whose well-being depends on these resources. Therefore, launching of these programs under the department has been significantly contributes to sustainable management of natural resources and thus contributes towards poverty alleviation and livelihood improvement of rural population as well as urban dweller.


The overall goal of the department is to develop competent and skilled natural resource management, forestry and soil resource and watershed management experts who will be able in conducting demand driven research and development activities in the area of soil, forest, land and water, and disseminating research results through well-coordinated extension program.
The specific objectives of the programs are:

  • To produce graduates with sufficient, relevant, technical, productive and entrepreneurship skills who will be involved in development, research and entrepreneurship in the aspect of natural resource (forest, land, soil, water, etc.), and other environmental conservation activities,
  • Offer an up-to-date and multi-disciplinary education that produce competent and qualified professionals in forestry, natural resource management, and soil resource and watershed management to address the manpower needs of the country,
  • Provide technical advices and tailored short term training to development agents and other stakeholders working in forestry, natural resource management, and soil resource and watershed management areas,
  • Conduct basic and applied research in forestry, natural resource management, and soil resource and watershed management paying special attention to the problem of the country and to disseminate research findings through extension programs to relevant institutions and individuals,
  • Produce graduates working effectively and play leadership role in multi-disciplinary teams, and have an understanding of professional and ethical responsibilities.

List of Programs 

  1. Undergraduate programs
  2. Regular in BSc Degree in Natural Resource Management
  3. Summer in BSc Degree in Natural Resource Management

Existing student’s profile

The total numbers of students enrolled currently in the department are 380 to attending their first degree both in regular and winter program. Out of these, (97) are regular sent from MOE and (283) are winter from Oromia Bureau of Agriculture (OBA). See the student population in table below.