Energy Business and Finance

Energy business and finance students working on a class project


The solutions to society's existing and emerging energy challenges require interdisciplinary approaches integrating economics and business with the technical knowledge of energy systems and implications for our environment. The Energy Business and Finance (EBF) program in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences offers such a transformative approach by integrating the study of energy economics and decision-making within an engineering department. The John and Willie Leone Family Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering is one of the few in the world to place both engineering and energy economics education under the same academic roof. Our commitment to interdisciplinary study was recently advanced by John and Willie Leone's gift of $5 million to support joint education in energy economics and engineering.

The EBF program emphasizes risk analysis and decision-making related to energy systems and environmental issues. Students are challenged to examine problems using rigorous quantitative analysis. Students entering the EBF major can choose either the general option or the energy land management option. EBF graduates who do well in the program have strong employment opportunities in the energy sector, and are well trained to enter both law and business school. The EBF program has already had substantial success. Building upon the long and respected tradition in EMS for Mineral Economics, in a few short years EBF has become one of the largest majors in the College. We believe, however, that our interdisciplinary educational approach has only begun to scratch the surface of EBF's potential. Our alumni now work in a variety of energy and consulting companies, as well as financial trading houses and federal agencies.

Our graduate option in Energy Management and Policy (EMP) has also attracted a strong pool of applicants from around the world. Together with our international faculty cohort, we are producing policy-relevant technical and economic research addressing major energy and environmental challenges faced by society. The utilization of any energy resource involves environmental consequences, thus effective energy policy requires a systems-level approach and understanding of the tradeoffs between energy utilization and avoided impacts on our environment. The EMP option admits students with technical backgrounds in science and engineering, and exposes them to a fast-paced and rigorous curriculum of energy economics, policy analysis and quantitative methods. EMP students undertake research that combine energy economics with scientific and engineering analysis under the supervision of an interdisciplinary committee. Our mission for the EMP option is simple: We seek to produce M.S. and Ph.D. graduates with deep technical knowledge and broad analytical skills, enabling them to be the energy policy leaders of tomorrow.

Insider's Guide to EBF

The Insider’s Guide to the EBF major contains detailed information about program requirements, strategies for success in the EBF program and a complete listing of courses that will count towards EBF degree requirements. All students are urged to review this document! There are three versions of the Insider’s Guide for the general option depending upon when a student entered Penn State and one version for the ENLMN option – please make sure you are using the right guide!

EBF Insider’s Guide for the General Option for students who entered Penn State between Summer 2015 and Spring 2017

EBF Insider’s Guide for the General Option for students who entered Penn State Summer 2017 or later

EBF Insider’s Guide for the Energy Land Management Option (ENLNM)

EBF Study Abroad Guide for students in the General Option

In addition, check out the List of Summertime Courses that EBF students can take during the summer sessions.

>> Helpful Tips from EBF Scheduling Night

A list of all the required courses for the program are available on the Recommended Academic Plan/Scheduling Guide for Energy Business and Finance.

Check Sheets

Instructional video for filling out EBF checksheets

EBF General Option Check Sheet for Program Year 2014 or earlier (without minor or term abroad)

EBF General Option Check Sheet for Program Year 2015 or later (with minor or term abroad)

Business Fundamentals Certificate offered by the Smeal College of Business

The Smeal College of Business has recently decided to allow students majoring in Energy Business and Finance to enter their Certificate in Business Fundamentals program. More information about the certification is available below.

EBF and Smeal Business Certificate