Environmental careers, which focus on how to best use and preserve the world's limited resources, can be very rewarding because they give you a chance to do something that benefits everyone. There are numerous careers within the environmental sector; the majority of them are with the federal government. These are spread out among the different environmental agencies such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Forest Service.
Geoscientists study the geologic history of the earth. They analyze rocks and use various sophisticated tests to determine the earth's composition. They often collaborate with other scientists like hydrologists to find natural resources that modern society can utilize. There are numerous sub-disciplines within the field of geoscience. These disciplines include geochemistry, petroleum geology and mineralogy. The job outlook for geoscientists is expected to be particularly good through 2018. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the number of jobs to increase by 18 percent by then. A bachelor's degree is adequate for entry-level positions within the field, but consulting positions with companies or the government usually require a master's degree. A doctorate is usually necessary to teach at the collegiate level. As of May 2008, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the median annual salary of geoscientists was $79,160.
Conservation scientists and foresters play an integral role in the preservation and management of America's forest land and other natural resources. Employment in this field is expected to increase by about 12 percent by 2018, according to the BLS. The minimum education required to work in this particular field is a bachelor's degree. Common fields of study for environmental scientists include environmental science, natural resource management and agricultural science. Those planning to work in the world of academia and conduct advanced research usually need a master's degree or a Ph.D. As of May 2008, according to the BLS, the median annual salary of conservation scientists was $58,720.
Biologists or biological scientists study living organisms and perform research to understand how the environment and environmental changes affect various animals. The death of a wildlife species can signal the end of an entire ecosystem. Biologists work with other scientists like conservation scientists and geoscientists to help preserve the delicate life balance on the earth by understanding how human actions affect the natural environment. While some entry-level research positions are open to those holding a bachelor's or master's degree, a Ph.D. is the preferred degree for advanced positions in research and teaching. The BLS predicts that the number of jobs for biologists will increase by 21 percent from 2008 to 2018. Pay varies by sub-discipline within the field. According to the BLS, as of May, 2008, the highest paying positions in the field were in the areas of biophysics and biochemistry with a median annual salary of $82,840.
- Photo Credit Forest image by Jody Vrugteveen from Fotolia.com
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