5 College Degrees That Can Help You Make the Earth Greener and Cleaner

Creative students with a strong environmental interest are encouraged to explore these options to benefit both themselves and the planet.

The sorry environmental state that our planet is in is too bad, but there’s nothing that you can do about it, you think? Not so fast! There are an increasing numbers of professions out there that not only are environmentally oriented, but that pay well, also.

Best of all, these are jobs that are going to be much in demand throughout the twenty-first century and beyond. These positions call for everything from policy writing, to inspections, to landscaping for projects ranging from back yards to urban parks.

But one thing that all of these “green” positions require is at least an undergraduate college degree. Some of the more exciting degrees are described below.

1. “Green” Architecture

Students learn everything from designing buildings with recycled materials, like plastic beams and girders, to using computer-generated 3-D Building Information Models (BIMS) instead of paper blueprints and as-built, to incorporating living plants into the design to improve air quality and reduce utility costs.

2. “Eco” Tourism

This hospitality-oriented major doesn’t just show students neat places to take tourists on safari. Students not only learn how to shepherd tourists around the world in the least intrusive ways possible, they’re taught how to train and guide native groups through forming their own environmentally friendly tourist businesses as well. This helps to create sustainable, self-supporting businesses that draw less on vulnerable natural resources.

3. “Green” Fashion Design

The production of clothing is more labor and resource intensive than one would think. Much of this is dictated by decisions made by the fashion designer. Students here learn how to create new looks working with recyclable items and innovative production methods, in addition to developing new types of textiles.

4. Master of Laws (LLM) Program

For law students, obtaining the LLM degree allows them to practice law internationally, as well as in the United States. Law schools are now offering programs that offer environmental law LLM degrees, which means that such degree holders can work for global companies in terms of writing policy, advising, and doing regulatory work. In addition to traditional brick and mortar schools, it is possible to get an online LLM degree as well.

5. Sustainable Cooking

Like their future clients, students attending colleges with culinary arts programs didn’t used to worry where the food came from, as long as it tasted good. “Green” culinary arts programs now teach students everything from planning “locally sourced” menus, to food preparation in the most energy efficient ways possible, to composting.

These are just a few of the degrees which can be pursued that can lead to careers in the ever-expanding “green industry”. Creative students with a strong environmental interest are encouraged to explore these options to benefit both themselves and the planet.

Lizzie Weakley, the author of this article, is a freelance writer.


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