Green Careers Resource Guide 2014
I want a green career! So where do I get trained, or what do I major in?
By Jim Cassio, Workforce and Economic Development Consultant, Author and Career Expert
First, please understand that green jobs represent a wide variety of career choices and are found in virtually all industries (although not with all employers). Also, there are literally hundreds of occupations (well, about 300) that can lead to green jobs and green careers.
Second, those hundreds of occupations all have their own hiring requirements, including knowledge, skills, abilities, education and training, and experience. Not only that, but employers don’t always have the same hiring requirements for jobs within the same occupational classification, so expect that there will be some variation. As a result, there is no green training program or major that prepares you for all the green jobs! You have to look at the hiring requirements at the occupational level, and sometimes at the job level, and then you can identify the training or education you need.
Third, no matter what field you go into, you need to find your career niche. It needs to be a good fit for you, your values, aptitude, knowledge, skills and abilities. It doesn’t matter if it’s the best choice for others. It only matters that it’s a great choice for you, that it will provide adequate employment opportunities in the future, and that it will make you want to get up every morning to go to work.
Fourth, please understand that green jobs are not huge in overall numbers. Currently they represent only 1-5% of all jobs – depending on the local area or region. But is it a growing field? Absolutely! Even during the Great Recession, green jobs were one of the few areas of the economy that continued to expand. But that growth in green jobs couldn’t keep up with the number of people who wanted a green job. As a result, green jobs were not only small in number, but they were extremely competitive. Not only are young people interested in green careers, but also many baby boomers are finding the idea of a green job to be very appealing as a twilight career.
About the Author:
Jim Cassio is a workforce and economic development consultant, author and career expert who has been commissioned to conduct hundreds of labor market studies and has published numerous research reports, as well as career resource books.
Jim is also the author of:
Green Careers: Choosing Work for a Sustainable Future (New Society Publishers)
Green Careers Resource Guide (free ebook from cassio.com)