Photograph of a geologist holding a pick and looking at some hills.

Earth science careers

Earth scientists (or, geoscientists) work in industry, government agencies, non-profit organizations, universities, and museums. There are many subfields of Earth science. Some Earth scientists search for mineral or energy resources. Others work to keep drinking water safe or help to plan construction projects to protect people from natural disasters. Still others conduct research to understand Earth's history and how the planet works, and then share this information with their students. As noted by the American Geosciences Institute (AGI), "Geoscience jobs are plentiful, salaries are robust, and the demand for young and enthusiastic geoscientists is expected to continue growing." Resources to help you learn about different educational and employment pathways in the Earth sciences are shared below.

Image above: Geologist in the Park intern at John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon. National Park Service photo by Geoscientists-in-the-Parks (Flickr;  public domain; image cropped and resized).

Page last updated Feb. 23, 2024

American Geosciences Institute (AGI) Geoscience Careers Brochure

This is a quick introduction to geoscience college majors, the fields in which geoscientists works, and salary information. A corresponding video is also available.

Explore AGI Geoscience Careers Brochure

Geoscience Resources on Opportunities in the Workforce (GROW)

Overview of varied career paths for college students who are exploring non-academic jobs.

GROW website

United States Bureau of Labor Statistics

The following links from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics provide overviews of different Earth science fields, including career prospects.

I Want to be a Paleontologist! A Guide for Students

This page provides some information about the field of paleontology and some of the pathways that lead people to a career in this field.

Image showing a diversity of different types of fossils.

Earth Science Career Videos

These videos highlight different types of jobs in the Earth sciences.

"Geocareers in Government" by the Geological Society of America. YouTube.

"Geocareers: Industry" by the Geological Society of America. YouTube.