What most people think of when they think about environmental jobs are scientists and researchers. They include all manner of biologists, geologists, zoologists, ecologists, and many other “-ists” who represent the science of the environment. If you have a background in any of these fields, then getting a job related to environmental science is quite possible with just a little bit of training and dedication, both as a scientific researcher and analyst.
There are also plenty of jobs available in the environmental education area as instructors or professors of courses at universities offering undergraduate and graduate studies relating to the environment. Educational seminars are also regularly held for which organizers, speakers, announcers, and so forth are always needed. Whether you want to do such work full-time or part-time, there are always plenty of openings in the education field of the environment.
Jobs in environmental health are those closely related to recycling, conservation, waste disposal, energy reusability, the development of alternative sources of energy, and so on. People with many different backgrounds, ranging from architecture to fine arts, are all valuable to the environmental sector for helping to find newer and better ways to conserve and create energy. There are naturalists who understand the ecology and the delicate balances of nature, green architects who help design buildings with energy conservation and reusability in mind, and environmental engineers to aid in alleviating problems like acid rain and air pollution, just to name a few of the professionals who contribute.
These are also the administrators, the organizers, the public relations managers, the human resource professionals, the accountants, and so on. They create and manage environmental events and seminars, hire the necessary people, keep organizations running smoothly and efficiently, and manage the various donations and funds that come in for environmental works.
There are two main places that people looking to work in the environmental field can apply. The first area includes all the environmental organizations that run largely on donations and funding and focus specifically on matters related to the environment, such as research, education, science, environmental health, and so on. The second area consists of the social and environmental responsibility branches of various corporations and multinationals. Many of these companies hire ecologists or environmental scientists, as well as environmental lawyers, to help advise them on product regulation compliance.
Anyone looking to work in the environmental field should first identify their core strengths and areas of expertise and then look for a corresponding job in the sector, whether that be in education, science, law, or elsewhere. No matter what your abilities and skills, there is likely to be an opening that suits you in some environmental organization or another.
The first place to start looking for a job in the environmental sector is on the Internet. This includes not only professional networking sites and the individual websites of various organizations, but also the online job listings of the larger news publications. There are always newspaper classifieds, of course, but there is a typically a more comprehensive version of these listings on the news publication’s website.
Your next step, after you have narrowed down your potential employer list, should be visiting the human resources department of the given organization or corporation to find out about any vacancies they might have in the area you specialize in. Another step you can take in the green direction is visiting the head of the department you’re interested in -- this works especially well in the environmental education field.
The best way to find jobs in the environmental sector, however, is through networking. Word of mouth is the most powerful source of information out there, regardless of how much information is available on the Internet. Talking to family and friends, business colleagues, co-workers, old and current bosses that you are still friendly with, and other acquaintances is the best way to get a foot in the green door.
The environmental sector has openings, and a real need, for all sorts of competent professionals, so do not hesitate to apply today. This is one of the most socially and personally satisfying sectors to work in, helping you give back to the community while appreciating and rewarding your efforts.