Career Information for a Degree in Natural Resource Management

Natural resource management professionals create, plan, monitor, direct and evaluate programs that preserve the environment. Degree programs train students to work in the fields of resource conservation and environmental management.

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Career Information

Some areas of specialty within natural resource management are range management, soil conservation and forestry. These professionals often work for government agencies and non-profit organizations and focus on environmental law, public policy and land use. Their job is to maintain a balance between human interests and environmental health.

Range Manager

Range managers are responsible for the efficient use and management of rangeland ecosystems, such as the grasslands, deserts and tundra. While primarily employed by government agencies, range managers may also work in the private sector. They sometimes have job titles like range conservationist, ranch manager, agricultural product sales or land reclamation specialist. Common duties include:

  • Maintaining clean air and water
  • Monitoring food supply and habitat for wild animals
  • Recommending and enforcing livestock regulations
  • Protecting and rebuilding biodiversity
  • Accommodating hunting and recreation

Soil Conservationist

Soil conservationists evaluate and maintain soil health. They work for government agencies and for private landowners, ranchers and farmers. These conservationists develop land use practices that prevent soil from becoming stripped of nutrients or contaminated with chemicals. They also identify and correct sources of erosion, write descriptions of soil composition and consult for construction and community planning industries.

Forester

Foresters have been educated to oversee the use of publicly and privately owned woodlands. They work for such entities as state and federal governments, logging companies and environmental agencies. Some common job titles are forest manager, wilderness and trails specialist, forestry consultant, forest ranger and timber investor. Depending on their specific position, foresters can have varying duties; however, general forestry responsibilities include:

  • Planning and overseeing the regeneration of forests
  • Maintaining forest wildlife and ecosystems
  • Monitoring forests for disease
  • Executing controlled burns
  • Inventorying timber for procurement and contracting with loggers

Job Outlook and Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), conservation scientists and foresters can expect to see a five percent job growth rate between 2010 and 2020 (www.bls.org). The BLS also notes that while wildfire management and urban revitalization will account for much of the demand for natural resource managers, the timber industry will see a decline in job creation. As of May 2012, conservation scientists, which includes range managers and soil conservationists, earned a median annual salary of $61,100 while foresters received $55,950 per year.

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 21 years of age or older and have completed some college or 24 years of age or older and a high school graduate for a Bachelor's degree
    • Masters degree applicants must have a Bachelors degree
    • Doctorate degree applicants must have a Masters degree
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • Arizona (1 campus)
    • California (1)

    Online and Classroom-Based Programs

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • All degree applicants must have a Bachelors degree or higher
    • Post-Master's Certificate degree applicants must have a Masters degree or higher
    School locations:
    • Maryland (1 campus)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    • Master
        • MS in Environmental Sciences & Policy

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

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Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Harvard University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Physical Sciences
      • Chemistry Sciences
      • Forestry and Wildlands Management
      • Natural Resources Conservation
      • Natural Resources Management
      • Physical and Environmental Science
      • Physics
  • School locations:
    • Pennsylvania (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Pennsylvania include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Physical Sciences
      • Chemistry Sciences
      • Natural Resources Conservation
      • Natural Resources Management
        • Wetlands and Marine Resource Management
      • Physical and Environmental Science
      • Physics
  • School locations:
    • North Carolina (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Duke University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Physical Sciences
      • Chemistry Sciences
      • Forestry and Wildlands Management
      • Natural Resources Conservation
      • Natural Resources Management
      • Physical and Environmental Science
      • Physics
  • School locations:
    • New York (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Cornell University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Physical Sciences
      • Chemistry Sciences
      • Natural Resources Conservation
      • Natural Resources Management
        • Natural Resource Economics
      • Physical and Environmental Science
      • Physics

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Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics