About the College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture

The College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture at the University of Maine is a hub for discovery, education and collaboration in the social, health, life and environmental sciences. 

Since our inception in 1868, faculty at the college have spearheaded the University of Maine’s land, and now sea and space grant missions. And since 1885, the Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station has powered use-inspired research to fuel innovation in Maine’s businesses and communities. Today, this interdisciplinary hub supports faculty in half our school and departments, and embodies our state’s largest applied research unit.

In addition to our base in Orono, the college has a network of farms, forests, marine labs and facilities across what is now known as the State of Maine. There, our faculty experts partner with individuals, agencies, tribes, NGOs and others to develop practical, locally-based solutions to the most pressing issues and grand challenges of our time. 

Our students develop real-world perspectives with hands-on opportunities in Maine’s forests, farms, fisheries, hospitals, schools, communities and businesses. From labs on campus where undergraduate students advance scientific discovery as a part of their coursework, to Alaska’s glaciers through the Juneau Icefield Research Program, our faculty help students develop the skills they need to thrive in their future careers. 

We believe our faculty, staff, and students are our greatest asset. We strive to create an environment where each person’s unique attributes and perspectives are celebrated. We recognize and stand against systemic racism, violence and injustice, and are committed to the University of Maine’s core values of inclusion, diversity and anti-racism. We continually examine our organization, our actions and our role in rebuilding systems that are fair and equitable for all. Through this effort, we aim to create an environment where everyone can thrive. 

We appreciate your interest in our work and hope you will explore our website to learn more about science and student experiences that inspire our community.

Our impact

  • Our faculty generate nearly half of UMaine’s total sponsored research.
  • Active research projects in all 16 of Maine’s counties.
  • The college and its programs have nearly 500 public, private, and industrial partners. 
  • Our programs have hundreds of legal affiliation agreements with healthcare agencies across Maine to provide clinical experiences for students while serving the communities of Maine.
  • The Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station is the largest applied research unit at the University of Maine and in the state of Maine with ~90 faculty scientists, who lead >100 research programs and are members of 20 USDA multistate research teams.
  • The college is home to UMaine’s largest cohort of undergraduate students—more than 2,500 in total.
  • Most natural resource and environmental programs have strong out-of-state demand with some at >60% non-resident students.  
  • We generate ~35% of UMaine’s graduate student credit hours.
  • The college has a long history of nurturing alumni and other potential donors. Support from these friends typically adds up to $3.2 to 4 million per year, a testament to our value among some of UMaine’s most dedicated supporters. 

Watch 5-minute snapshots from our programs to explore the science and student experiences the inspire our work.