Every fall and every spring, the skies over the Cape Cod National Seashore and other coastal areas are awash in a flurry of birds. As a major pit stop on the Atlantic Flyway, Massachusetts sees species from all across the eastern half of the continent as they go on their biannual migrations through our scenic state.
That also means that our ecology here has major ramifications for other parts of the United States, Mexico, and Canada, since those species can't go on to survive and thrive in their summer and winter nesting grounds if they can't pass safely through our state. Environmental activists and scientists have taken up the cause of protecting vital feeding and rest areas in the state through the Wetlands Protection Act.
And since we're hip deep in Ivy League and other top-ranked American universities, those scientists and activists have access to the finest education in environmental science that money can buy.
What Can I Do with an Environmental Science Degree in Massachusetts
The commonwealth itself, through MassDEP, is a big employer of environmental scientists in Massachusetts, but we're also a state with plenty of commercial and non-profit opportunities as well. The Nature Conservancy and Audubon both have active chapters here, while consulting firms like U.S. Ecology are also frequently hiring.
There are also high-prestige programs that will be looking for the cream of the crop in environmental science professionals, places like the Woods Hole Research Center, world-famous for its oceanography research.
That kind of presence drives up salaries, so that conservation scientists here can expect to earn around $72,200 annually according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And that's at the low end of the range in environmental professions-foresters make almost $77,000, while environmental scientists and geoscientists make anywhere from $82,000 to $87,000 a year.
Master's in Environmental Science in Massachusetts
If you plan to earn a master's in environmental studies in Massachusetts, you'd better sit down and start making a list, because you've got a lot of options to choose from.
At the top of that list, naturally, is going to be Harvard's environmental science concentration in engineering science. As the number three ranked environmental school in the nation, the program meets its goal of training students to understand, predict, and respond to human-induced environmental change.
If you find Harvard a little on the spendy side, though, you can always turn to the excellent public universities here, like the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. There, you'll find an MS in Environmental Conservation that has similar priorities and perspectives, but with even more focus on the natural environment, rather than engineering. With five concentration areas and a thesis option, you can get the full measure of environmental education here at a fraction of the private program cost.
Bachelor's in Environmental Science in Massachusetts
The riches keep coming at the undergraduate level, too. Tufts offers a multidisciplinary Environmental Studies Program that focuses on study of natural surroundings and training students in design principles to minimize the degradation of those surroundings… including the social and political tools necessary to build consensus around preserving and improving the environment.
Online Environmental Science Degree Options from Schools in Massachusetts
Choosing an online degree makes perfect sense from both the environmental and practical viewpoints these days… you eliminate commutes, relocation, and other impactful issues revolving around studying in the traditional classroom environment, and at the same time gain the flexibility to study on your own time, while meeting commitments in other aspects of your life.
So it's great news for Massachusetts students that Northeastern University's College of Science offers an online Master of Science in Biotechnology. The innovative, non-thesis program offers interdisciplinary training in seven different concentration areas that can prepare you for further studies or a career in everything from biotech enterprise to regulatory environments.