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Jobs and Graduate School with the Baccalaureate Degree in Environmental Science

With a baccalaureate degree, graduates are prepared to advance to graduate school or seek entry-level employment in the diverse and vigorous environmental job market. Environmental technology has quickly become one of the largest sectors of the U.S. economy. Government policies have yielded cleaner air and water. Industry is rapidly adopting sustainability as a driver of its corporate strategies and is adopting new technologies that have added to the bottom line, generated or saved jobs, and greatly improved the environment. The Environmental Science degree prepares graduates to be involved in career and personal activities that emphasize the management of all components of the bio-physical environment. This includes a strong emphasis on the relationships of the human environment (social, cultural, economic) with the bio-physical environment. Graduates with the Environmental Science degree are engaged in such activities as pollution control, waste management, remediation, land and water use and management, endangered species, urban and regional planning and many others. Prospective employers often include the words “interdisciplinary experience desired” in job advertisements.


Employment History of SNRE Graduates with the Baccalaureate Degree

More than 40% of our Environmental Science graduates go on to graduate or professional school, engaging in a range of fields including interdisciplinary ecology, law, urban and regional planning, natural resource management, earth and life sciences and journalism/communications. Generally these individuals seek to develop mastery in these advanced fields, or they intend to enter the job market at a level that maximizes income and leads to a policy or management role with the employer.

Many of our baccalaureate students enter the private sector, which hires approximately 44% of our graduates. Most graduates are employed as environmental engineers or as environmental consultants. Others are employed in a wide range of positions, including real estate, small business and other professional companies. About 32% work in government agencies with most working in state agencies, followed by federal agencies and then local governments. Most state and federal agencies prefer to hire at the master's or doctoral levels.

SNRE graduates have found employment in 27 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and more than 5 countries. More than 60% of undergraduates find employment in Florida. Only a very small percentage of undergraduates find employment internationally, in contrast to the SNRE graduate students who go on to advanced employment opportunities. See Graduates and their Careers for a complete and recent update of the employment history of SNRE graduates.  For more information on the success of SNRE students, read the report -- Graduates and Their Careers.


Students seeking employment after completing the Environmental Science degree might expect to see such job titles as:

  • Air Quality Analyst
  • Biologist
  • Ecologist
  • Environmental Analyst
  • Environmental Educator
  • Environmental Planner
  • Environmental Safety Specialist
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Environmental Technician
  • Field Technician
  • Hazardous Materials Specialist
  • Industrial Hygiene Specialist
  • Nature Preserve Manager
  • Risk Assessor
  • Stormwater Program Manager
  • Wastewater Treatment Specialist
  • Wetlands Scientist
  • Wildlife Ecologist
  • Zoologist
  • Aquatic Biologist
  • Botanist
  • Engineering Assistant
  • Environmental Coordinator
  • Environmental Permitting Specialist
  • Environmental Project Manager
  • Environmental Sanitarian Specialist
  • Environmental Specialist
  • Environmental Trainer
  • Greenways Coordinator
  • Hydrologic Technician
  • Natural Resource Planner
  • Research Scientist
  • Sales Representative
  • Utility Projects Coordinator
  • Water Quality Analyst
  • Wildlife Biologist
  • Wildlife Manager

Students seeking advanced study at the University of Florida might consider:

Academic Programs

  • Anthropology
  • Ecology, Interdisciplinary
  • Environmental Engineering Sciences
  • Forest Resources and Conservation
  • Landscape Architecture
  • Political Science
  • Soil and Water Science
  • Wildlife Ecology and Conservation
  • Botany
  • Entomology and Nematology
  • Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
  • Geography
  • Latin American Studies
  • Resource Economics
  • Urban and Regional Planning
  • Zoology

Professional or Business-related degree programs

  • Business
  • Education
  • Journalism and Communication
  • Law

Research Opportunities

Some of the more popular departments that our students get involved in with research include the following:

Student Testimonials

MEREDITH

I went into undergrad uncertain about whether I wanted to pursue journalism and writing or a natural science.  I spent my first two years taking a lot of different courses to try to hone in on what I wanted to do.  When I found the Environmental Science major in the SNRE, I was so excited because it allowed me to bridge the gap between all the fields I love!  I took a ton of varied courses, ranging from conservation and policy to biology and creative writing.  I received a full range of experience in the field and in the classroom that helped me pursue my own research and interests.  I also got to experience really engaging research with the Mack Lab, I worked as an intern for Florida Organic Growers, I worked as an assistant in a law firm, and I had multiple farm internships across the US.  I graduated with a B.S in Environmental Science, and I am currently traveling the US on a climbing road trip as I apply to jobs in the field, hopefully in the Boulder/Denver area. 

TYLER

My name is Tyler.  I'm from Saint Augustine, Florida, and a graduate of the School for Natural Resources & Environment.  In May 2013, I received a degree in Environmental Science and was employed full-time by September 2013.  I was brought on as an Efficiency Analyst for a private company who partnered with the Home Depot on a national basis to carry out home and business remodeling projects.  My role at the company centered around increasing waste optimization for construction & demolition materials (C&D) taken out of homes or businesses.  By increasing the company's level of recycling and consequently lowering the amount of C&D taken to the landfill, we were able to achieve cost savings of $150,000/yr within 6 months of my employment.  
After a year had passed, I learned of a Governmental Analyst opening in the Governor's Office in the Environmental Policy Unit through my Academic Advisor.  I then interviewed and accepted the position.  I have since been promoted to a Senior Analyst.  In this new role I research and evaluate environmental policy issues on a statewide basis.  This allows me to call upon my schooling to a greater extent as I was primarily focused on recycling at my prior employer.  During my time in the Governor's Office, I've worked with the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the Department of Environmental Protection in crafting the Governor's annual recommended budget.  I also evaluate potential impacts of bills filed each legislative Session. 

During my employment in both roles, I've had to call upon lessons learned from my classes taken for the Environmental Science degree.  I recalled knowledge gained from Industrial Ecology when working to increase recycling and optimize the waste stream of the home installation company.  In my role within the Governor's Office, I've relied on Hydrogeology, Soil & Water Science, and  Capstone classes to better understand the benefits of restoration projects as well as how to take complex topics, break them down and explain in brief.  The Capstone classes have also been helpful when fielding input from multiple stakeholder groups and then collaborating for the achievement of a common goal.  I also draw upon my communication skills gained as a SNRE Liaison when speaking with large groups or on conference calls.  Overall, my experience at the University of Florida and specifically the School of Natural Resources & Environment has prepared me for positions in sustainability and environmental policy, and has allowed me to succeed in both.

JUSTIN

Working with Dr. Stein on ecotourism research as an IFAS intern has been a great experience and has taught me so much about the research process. I've helped create surveys, contacted tourism professionals, distributed surveys in recreation areas in Florida, and will soon engage in data analysis. My primary project focuses on determining what kind of roles tourism operators in Collier County would like the extension service to perform, including new roles beyond traditional education. This experience has done a lot to help me grow academically and professionally and I am extremely grateful for it.

For help with developing your professional skills, visit the Career Resource Center and chech out their advice on their website: http://www.crc.ufl.edu/students/Students.html.

Last Modified: Thursday, July 20, 2017 9:32