Environmental Restoration Planners
About 85,000 environmental scientists and specialists, a group that includes environmental restoration planners, are employed in the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Forty-two percent work for federal, state, and local government agencies. Many others work in the private sector for architectural, engineering, scientific, management, and technical consulting companies.
Environmental restoration planners often get started in their careers through internships or part-time jobs at environmental restoration planning consultancies. They find opportunities through professional associations such as the American Planning Association and the National Association of Environmental Professionals, as well as by contacting companies directly.
Environmental restoration planners with five or more years of experience advance by taking on more complex projects. Senior-level planners may be promoted to management roles, in which they oversee the work of others while handling larger projects. They may become division or district managers, responsible for larger regions. Full-time environmental restoration planners may leave their positions to start their own consulting businesses. Others may go back to school to earn an advanced degree or get certified to improve their skills and knowledge in certain areas of environmental restoration planning. Lecturing at professional associations' events and conferences, teaching in colleges, and writing for trade publications are other ways that planners share their expertise and advance in their field.
Tips for Entry
Keep up with news and developments in the field by reading publications such as Planning (http://www.planning.org/planning) and Restoration Ecology (http://www.ser.org/page/RestorationEcology).
Visit https://www.planning.org/jobs/search and https://naep-jobs.careerwebsite.com for job listings.
Find industry publications, educational workshops, networking opportunities, and other resources through membership to professional associations, such as the American Planning Association, https://www.planning.org, and the National Association of Environmental Planners, http://www.naep.org.
Get an internship or part-time job at an environmental restoration planning consultancy. Ask your school's career services office for help with locating opportunities.
Attend events and conferences, such as the APA’s National Planning Conference (http://www.planning.org/conference), for opportunities to meet and learn from planning professionals.