Careers: Environmental Science & Sustainability

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Careers: Environmental Science & Sustainability
Learn about "green" educational opportunities in high-demand environmental fields that can start right at your local community college.
As the government is now offering tax cuts and financial incentives for companies and individuals to “go green,” community college students are finding incredibly vast opportunities in the fields of environmental safety and studies.
The economy is predicting a new rise in “green collar workers,” and subsequently, more students are preparing for jobs in the field of renewing resources, eliminating corporate and facility emissions, and other “green” career avenues. If you want to enter into a greener career path, consider starting right at your local community college.
Green Energy Careers
As the Los Angeles Times reports, the new studies in climate change and global warming are inspiring a whole new range of careers and collegiate studies; “Concern about climate change is galvanizing more undergraduate students to turn toward a subject involving science and engineering.”
In fact, many college students feel confident that an environmental educational pathway will lead to an array of job opportunities upon graduation. As President Obama is proposing a multibillion-dollar push to stimulate clean energy standards, the President is striving to improve the environment while also hoping to create millions of new “green collar” jobs.
Presenting the statistic that college engineering programs have dropped over 5 percent from 2003 to 2005, Obama argues that new environmental studies and environmental engineering careers will be the key to boosting the country’s economic recovery. To help students pursue this career pathway, Obama’s stimulus plan includes $20 billion dollars to improve basic and applied scientific studies and research. This funding can help college students and professionals to research cheaper solar cells, greater wind turbine efficiency, and more effective and longer lasting batteries.
Community Colleges and “Green” Studies
As Green for All reveals, community colleges will continue to play an imperative role in pushing our fuel-based society towards a new reliance on renewable resources and energy. As ecological experts speak out, many believe that community college programs will be the “fulcrum” on which a transition from fuel to renewable energy will be made. More industries are continuing to evolve in the fields of solar, wind, and other natural powers, and subsequently, the workforce will continue to demand green experts, engineers, and construction workers.
Currently, there is an array of schools offering environmental studies for “green collar” career preparation. For example, Austin Community College(ACC), located in Austin, Texas, provides students with the opportunity to pursue an Associate’s Degree in environmental science and technology, in addition to other eco-based majors. While pursuing eco-based programs at ACC, students have the advantage of enrolling in diverse courses such as:
  • Issues in Environmental Science
  • Environmental Regulations Overview
  • Environmental Sampling and Analysis
  • Surface and Groundwater Collection
Adding to these classes, ACC students can even participate in an environmental engineering and environmental technology internship, as well as join eco-friendly clubs.
In addition to the opportunities at ACC, Manchester Community College (MCC), located in Manchester, Connecticut, is another one of the many schools providing students with environmental education and engineering programs. Similar to ACC, MCC students are able to enroll in various environmentally-based courses. Best of all, MCC additionally provides students with a “Pathways Program,” wherein students enrolled in an engineering-based major are provided with additional transferring support if students choose to continue their studies to pursue a four year degree at a cooperating Connecticut university.
While the starting salary and wages for the up and coming ecological careers varies, depending upon the specific job and its location, many students are hopeful that the new demand for eco-friendly experts will result in a steady rise in pay. Considering that President Obama asserts that he is dedicated to helping environmental careers and college studies, many soon to be graduates are looking forward to an open job field that is eager to hire students to change the environmental landscape.
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