Forestry/environmental science?
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13-12-2015, 07:14 PM
Forestry/environmental science?
Anybody know anything about forestry?

My sister is looking at going to school for forestry or environmental science, to be a park ranger. From what I've read, the job outlook is really bad, and not good pay. Does anybody know other things you could do with a forestry or env. science degree in which you could reliably get a job? From what the internet has told me, she could do some kind of "conservation management" type occupation, but I can't figure out what that entails. Any ideas/experiences?

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13-12-2015, 07:25 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
I am teaching a class next semester where there will be some Environmental Science majors. Hit me up next semester and I can ask them what they plan to do. Better, yet, have your sis email a professor (maybe a couple) in a couple of schools where she plans on attending and have her present herself as a potential student and ask them about it.
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13-12-2015, 07:32 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
The only thing I know about it is the job outlook is bad and it doesn't pay well.

Instead of environmental science maybe focus on civil engineering with an environmental sciences minor. I have a friend who does environmental engineering. He looks at how groundwater flows and helps cities plan civil works so as to minimize environmental impacts and contaminating drinking water and similar types of issues.

He doesn't make a fortune but he does ok. The recession a few years ago hurt him and he had difficulty finding work for a while. When cities and towns start cutting budgets, those types of expenditures are considered luxury items.

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13-12-2015, 09:03 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
I'll make a note of that Inigo, thanks. It seems like an ok degree to have but the prospects for park ranger is not as good as what you talked about with civil engineering or a similar thing. Not sure how interested she will be though. Thanks

A man should not believe in an ism, he should believe in himself. -Ferris Bueller

That's what a ship is, you know. It's not just a keel and a hull and a deck and sails, that's what a ship needs but what a ship is... what the Black Pearl really is... is freedom. -Jack Sparrow
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13-12-2015, 09:47 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
Park ranger positions are ridiculously competitive. Her typical competitor will have both the degree and previous law enforcement experience and/or environmental management experience. The supply greatly outweighs the demand. The degree itself can be useful if she's willing to look for other jobs in the field besides being a ranger and is willing to continually move to different undeveloped places (i.e. following logging operations that are by default not static).

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13-12-2015, 09:59 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
If park ranger is the goal then yes her job opportunities are going to be ridiculously limited. But forestry is not limited to park rangers and a graduate degree could open up a lot of different options in environmental science.

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13-12-2015, 11:40 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
I worked for the Kansas Department of Health & Environment, on the Environment side, as a field biologist, doing river systems analysis, chemical testing, species trapping/identifying, and surveying. Tell her to pad her degree with lots of chemistry and biology courses in addition to whatever requirements she has for the Enviro degree.

The pay wasn't great, but it was decent ($35K/yr plus Per Diem) and I had to spend 3 out of every 5 days on the road, sleeping in hotels 2 nights a week in the middle of nowhere, but I loved every minute of it.

I'd recommend the career to anyone. I don't know anything about being a Park Ranger, but working directly for environmental protection was fantastic work (if a bit depressing-- you wouldn't believe the damage we're doing to the environment, just to sustain our lifestyles), and I think it could make a satisfying career. She should take a low-level job in the field, especially if it's in government, with an eye toward attaining higher degrees which will help the income. The job itself can help her get paid entry into a good graduate school.

Best of luck to her.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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14-12-2015, 06:27 PM
RE: Forestry/environmental science?
Many of our local Game Commission types do conservation management things. There's a 12,500-acre state game lands here, and these guys do everything from deciding when to cut timber, in which area, to creating feed lots (open grassy areas) for the deer, to deer population management, to chasing the assholes riding ATVs, to fire prevention. Not quite a park ranger, but pretty close. Have her check out your states' Game Commission.

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