Military Lands Training

Training and maintaining our nation’s fighting force is the primary mission of the Department of Defense. However with nearly 30 million acres, containing thousands of known archaeological sites, and over half the historic assets in the Federal real property portfolio, DoD has considerable regulatory and stewardship responsibilities for the vast array of historic properties under its care.

The breadth and complexity of military land management dictates that current and future professionals be knowledgeable of the rapidly evolving practices, technologies and analytical tools that support this critical national defense mission. Yet shrinking budgets and shifting national priorities require DoD Cultural Resources Managers to continuously “do more with less,” and develop strong partnerships both inside and outside of DoD, to have the tools and resources to get the job done.

The Sustainable Military Lands Management (SMLM) Training and Certification Program conducted by the Center for Environmental Management of Military Lands (CEMML) at Colorado State University fills this knowledge gap by offering expert training, testing and certification conducted by MilCHAG team leaders and subject matter experts in a cost- and time-efficient course. Those who complete the program:

  • Gain an overview of military lands in the United States in historical, geographical, and environmental contexts.
  • Learn the general practices and theory of land management, as well as cultural anthropology.
  • Study the ecological principles of military training and testing areas and the impacts of disturbances caused by these activities.
  • Explore cultural resources laws, policies, management, and preservation as they apply to military lands.
  • Prepare to lead stewardship-related matters on military lands.
  • Apply your knowledge and skills to a wide array of federal, state, and foreign land management agencies.


The Department of Defense’s commitment to integrating training readiness with the long-term environmental stewardship of military lands requires that professional military land managers, both civilian and military, be knowledgeable in a wide range of natural resources and environmental disciplines. To address critical issues in federal lands management, the Center for Environmental Management of Military Lands (CEMML) at Colorado State University offers three new online courses in Sustainable Military Lands Management, through a partnership with the Warner College of Natural Resources (WCNR). Click the image above to view a course description.

A post baccalaureate certificate in Sustainable Military Lands Management is available for those completing the following SMLM courses:

  1. Introduction to Sustainable Military Lands Management (NR 550)
  2. Cultural Resource Management on Military Lands (NR 551)
  3. Ecology of Military Lands (NR 552)

After completing this certificate, the student will have an enhanced command of military land management and understanding of the cultural and ecological significance of sustaining military lands, which are critical assets for training and testing activities, but they also harbor diverse (and often rare) flora and fauna and cultural resources that must be protected.

The SLML Program is a one-of-a-kind online education offering makes the conservation and sustainable management of natural and cultural resources on DoD lands accessible to civilian and military land management professionals throughout the world. For more information about SMLM, please download this PDF.

This program and many other efforts, CEMML supports the national defense mission by providing a range of technical services and environmental professionals experienced in the conservation and sustainable management of natural and cultural resources on Department of Defense lands.