Environmental Education Jobs: What Can I Expect?
The environment, and conservation of the environment, depends heavily on people with environmental education jobs. These jobs do not solely involve environment education; they are about keeping up with knowledge and how natural habitats work. Ultimately, those with environmental education jobs pass on information about behavior management, ecosystems and sustainable living.
The purpose of these jobs is to keep the general public educated and well informed – regardless of their age, race or where they live. Most of all environmental educationalists would like to see everyone make positive changes to help conserve the environment.
Primarily, environmental education can come from various fields of studies from disaster management to biology and chemistry.
Main focus of environmental education jobs
In recent years, environmental education jobs have become more important. Every organism, large and small, depends on the environment and its ecosystems. This group of professionals engages people and tries to create a common preservation goal. They research, think creatively and ethically and evaluate all issues pertaining to the environment. They educate people on the negative and positive impacts we have on the environment.
Environmental education jobs need ongoing skills development and a whole heap of personal commitment. They also need to relay information effectively, so print materials (such as posters and flyers) are used, as well as websites and media campaigns.
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Can you think of an environmental campaign going on somewhere near you? It will probably involve a lot of different people.
Examples of environmental education jobs
Environmental education jobs can be enlightening, rewarding and physical. There are avenues for career growth with comfortable pay. After college or school, students often get into internships or volunteering activities. Some environmental educations jobs can be done during the summer break as an introduction to the field. There are various openings apart from the obvious. You can teach the subject in schools or create campaigns (from festivals to small-scale local conservation) for relevant audiences.
Program managers can be responsible for carrying the vision, staying true to the objectives of campaigns and liaising with other environmental educationalists.
Environmental education jobs involve working with a huge range of other people, including digital communications managers who stay on top of websites and relevant blogs. So it is not all about classroom teaching, research or training; people in this particular profession are responsible for maintaining an up-to-date online presence that works towards a common goal.
So basically, as long as the work involves educating on some level about the environment then there are few limits.
Environmental education officers
This may be the ultimate role in the environmental education jobs portfolio. These are usually the most visible people at any environmental event. They make sure the targeted audience is aware of the current issues. Hopefully the general public will enjoy and value their environment, if they are taught about conservation, for example.
Others may have to train and inspire different age groups of people, such as very young people on a guided nature walk. This is more commonly called ‘outdoor education’.
From the scientific and statistical side, environmental educationalists are engaged in research and the collection of scientific data which is used to identify problems and generate solutions. They are also responsible for carrying out risk assessments. This branch is sometimes called ‘citizen science’ as it can involve getting people to collect data from local systems and reporting to you.
Benefits of environmental education jobs
First and foremost, environmental education jobs do not necessarily require formal training especially at entry-level. They call for passion, dedication and hard work. Internships are a good way of getting into this field and exploring the huge number of options.
Many of the positions will have a lot of work outside in a natural environment, so it is far from a straight office job. You may have heard about volunteers re-vegetating areas that have become degraded or badly impacted by pollution. Others campaign for species that are threatened and create habitats for them.
Garden-based learning is becoming a significant trend around the world and it needs environmental educationalists. A school may set up a food garden, or a community may set up a patch on a rooftop where food is grown and shared. People learn about the science of growing food locally, they improve their physical and mental health and get to eat it all too!
Children learn so much about the environment when they see it in action – how things grow, what caterpillars are and how everyone can come together to make the world a better place. It has been shown that people who grow food in a community develop a strong commitment to the environment. Imagine being an educator in that context!
Interaction with the environment can only be a good thing today. You can see what is going on firsthand and learn current thinking about conservation.
Most environmental education jobs pay reasonably well. There is always a possibility for career growth, especially if you start out volunteering or in an internship. Most of all, environmental education jobs involve meeting people, and almost everyone gets heaps of satisfaction working for a cause.