Business and government need more environmental science

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BANGOR, MAINE, Nov. 19, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — As public concern over global warming, environmental dangers and population growth increases, the demand for educated and skilled professionals in the sciences of environment also increases. Added to this demand are companies that believe they must act in an environmentally responsible manner to satisfy the interests of their customers and stakeholders.

The next decade will see significant growth in this career field. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook, employment of environmental scientists and professionals is expected to grow 8% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations.1

With the goal of helping Husson students better understand the career opportunities available to them in environmental science; the University hosted a STEM careers webinar on Tuesday, November 10, 2020 at 4 p.m. The Zoom event brought together a panel of three prominent environmental science professionals.

Samuel Kunz, Assistant Director of Career Services, believes events like this are essential for any student considering entering today’s job market. “Students who attended this event had the opportunity to connect with alumni who were once as they were – undergraduate students at Husson University,” Kunz said. “At the end of the event, our students realized that they too could have successful careers in this field. The only obstacles to their success are those they create for themselves.

Events like this offer other benefits as well. In addition to learning what it takes to succeed, students were able to make valuable contacts that can potentially lead to internships or job opportunities after graduation.

The three eminent business professionals who participated in the roundtable of the event came from various types of environmental science organizations. They included:

Cara Belanger, a project scientist at Stillwater Environmental Engineering, Inc. (SEE). This company provides a full range of civil engineering, environmental engineering and regulatory compliance assistance to municipal, industrial and institutional entities.

Bélanger graduated from the University of Vermont with a degree in environmental science and a minor in chemistry. His undergraduate research focuses on the impact of road salt on aquatic life in waterways. At SEE, Belinger performs rainwater sampling, infrastructure inspections and site inspections. She also helps plan education and awareness events and helps develop compliance plans.

Brandon Delano, a water systems operator at Water Quality & Compliance Services. This company specializes in servicing Maine’s private and public water and wastewater systems.

Delano attended Husson University from 2013 to 2017 and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and a minor in Biology. In the fall of 2017, Maine Coast Laboratory and Water Quality & Compliance Services of Wiscasset, Maine hired him.

In the laboratory, he assists as an analyst. His responsibilities include the processing and analysis of drinking water and wastewater samples. Outside of the lab, he works as a field technician, managing the operations of drinking water and wastewater systems throughout Maine to keep them in compliance with state/federal regulations. Additionally, Delano is also leading fieldwork for a stormwater phosphorus monitoring project with the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). It has its Class 2T2D state license to operate regulated drinking water systems. Delano has also achieved National Radon Proficiency Program (NRPP) certification from the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST). He is currently working towards obtaining his Biological License I to operate regulated wastewater systems.

Johanna Szillery, Senior Project Scientist at CES Inc. CES Inc. is an engineering, environmental and surveying consulting firm. Szillery works in the Bangor office. She has a technical background in botany, wetland science, soil science and water chemistry. Szillery holds a Bachelor of Arts from Drew University in New Jersey and a Master of Science in Plant, Soil, and Environmental Science from the University of Maine. She has held positions in the federal government, the National Park Service and the United States Department of Agriculture, as well as in various consulting firms.

In her current role, she heads the natural resources division at CES and oversees project planning, natural resource assessments and permits. Szillery continues to enjoy the variety of his work, from working in beautiful parts of the state of Maine, to developing relationships with customers and regulators, to training and mentoring younger staff.

The event was only open to members of the Husson University community. Students did not need to be looking for a job to participate. This online event was open to students of all levels who wanted to learn more about career opportunities in environmental science.

Robert Northington, PhD, assistant professor in the College of Science and Humanities at Husson University believed that this online event offered important insight into the careers of the future. “The world population continues to grow. As a species, we must better understand the natural and physical processes that affect the functioning of our planet, if we are to survive.

“The demand for people with knowledge of environmental science will only grow,” he said. “I am proud to be able to contribute to the development of the next generation of environmental scientists. Their ability to find creative solutions to our climate problems will save lives.

For more than 120 years, Husson University has prepared future leaders to meet the challenges of tomorrow through innovative undergraduate and graduate degrees. With a commitment to providing affordable classroom, online, and experiential learning opportunities, Husson University has become a top value in higher education. Our Bangor campus and off-campus satellite education center in Northern Maine both provide advanced business knowledge; health and education; pharmacy studies; sciences and humanities; as well as communication. Additionally, Husson University has a strong adult learning program. According to a recent analysis of tuition and fees per US News and World Report, Husson University is one of the most affordable private colleges in New England. For more information on educational opportunities that can lead to personal and professional success, visit Husson.edu.

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1 Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook, ‘Environmental Scientists and Specialists’, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/environmental-scientists-and-specialists.htm

  • Robert Northington – 2

  • STEM Career Panel – Environment – Leaflet – 2


        
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