The Environmental Sector: or, I Did Not Realise There Were So Many Options!

Recent graduate Elanor Alun has put together a guide to possible careers that you could persue after studying Environmental Conservation at UWTSD. 

You might be thinking it’s all trees and rare bunnies or something, and that would be fair enough; the tree-hugging hippy stereotype is well-earned. Many of us do exactly that. Some of us are doing it at the same time as writing these words. But! To give you a broader idea, here are just some of the fields you can go into with an Environmental Conservation degree:

 

Environmental Conservation Your Future Career

Your Future Career

Quick Facts

1. The environmental sector is growing, and also incredibly varied.
2. You can do more outdoorsy work if you hate offices and/or people, or more indoors work if you hate rain.
3. There are certain skills that almost guarantee you’ll never be out of a job.
4. This course has a 95% employment rate.
5. No really.
6. 95%.
7. That’s loads.

Coastal Zone Management
Where you try to stop the sea from eroding away the beach/people, and decide which bits should be kept for swimming and which bits for jet-skis, and where to let tourists visit and where to rope off to protect some unique form of sea-unicorn living in the rockpools. That stuff.
 
Community Engagement
Are they recycling? Do they know they can use that greenspace? Do they know it’s even there? Do they know badgers are protected and they shouldn’t be shooting them? Do they know they can go cycling/walking/running for free?
 
Ecology
Where you survey places to find out what’s living there, in a bid to stop corporations from trying to build 80 houses on top of the last breeding colony of the Lesser Spotted Vampire Bat in Wales, or something similar. And if you get a bat license, or become a botanist? Jobs for life, yo.
 
Education
Of children, or just of the general public. What does your organisation do? How are you protecting the pygmy shrews? Why is this important?
 
Environmental Impact Assessment
If you want to build a thing, first you must know what environmental things will be damaged by the thing. Step in EIA writers! A good job for those who like bits of practical survey work and lots of written work. Also, there’s good money in this one.
 
Environmental Law
As you might expect, environmental law has its own practitioners, being its own special area involving things like torts and the phrase Common Law.
 
Flood Risk Assessment
Welcome to Wales, land of rain and slopes and therefore floods. How vulnerable is a community to getting flooded? How likely is that river to burst its banks? In what way can the community be protected from the Oncoming Waters? This is one field with a pretty solid future, and good money.
 
Forestry and Agriculture
Both of these industries are increasingly trying to move towards greater sustainability so that they can still have jobs in twenty years. This means lots of scope for some whippersnapper to come and tell angry farmers with guns that they’ve been doing everything all wrong; which is to say, this is an excellent field for diplomatic people.
 
Habitat Management
This one is largely land management, where you try to manage a site to improve conditions for the dormice or whitebeam trees or what have you without other people getting annoyed because you won’t let them take their 50 trained rhinos on a walk through the site anymore. It’s all about compromise…
 
Marine biology
Where you try to learn about/conserve all the stuff that’s living in the oceans without breaking down crying at 2.30 every single day at how bleak and hopeless everything is.
 
Policy Advice to Companies
Many companies now hire environmental advisors to suggest to them how they might make their operations less polluting/destructive. The probably then ignore these advisors, but it does pay nicely, and you get an office.
 
Research Science 
If you just love academic research, there’s always more to study in the fields of environmental sciences, and you can largely pick your topic.
 
Warden of a Remote Island
No, really. These contracts run for about nine months at a time, and you go and live on an island in the sea and manage the island and its wildlife and possibly chase pirates away. The ultimate job for the “I hate people” crowd.
 
Waste Management and Recycling
It may sound unglamorous, but it’s a fascinating process, turning waste into a saleable, useable product to reduce pollution. Like… they can turn glass bottles into a fine sandy aggregate for the building industry! Amazing! There’s also very, very good money in it.
 
We have a Taster Day in Environmental Conservation on Wednesday, 22nd March 2017: Book Now: