Have the Degrees But Not the Direction? Think Academics

by Aman Singh Das | January 06, 2010

  • My Vault

Agreed that much is being opined right now about the potential that a green career holds. However, mostly the references point to private sector desk-and-chair jobs or nonprofit trudging. What is skipped often is the academic potential of a green career. You have the corporate experience, you have the necessary degree(s), you've done the legwork but cannot seem to figure out what can be a progressive next step.

Think Professor. Think Green. Think Ecology Professor. A career in academics can mean stability, progression, a decent schedule and of course, the non-monetary benefit of doing good. And combine that with the hottest industry right now when you think of career progress, and you might have a winning formula.

Vault.com spoke to Professor Scott Herron at Ferris State University, an undergraduate college in Michigan. Professor Herron teaches botany, plant propagation, microbial ecology, integrated ecology and ethnobotany. He holds a PhD in plant biology, and has also studied anthropology. What does a typical day in his life look like? Read on.

8:00 a.m.: Kindergarten drop-off. Get up, get ready and drop off your five-year-old at kindergarten.

8:30 a.m.: Rice research. Arrive at school, drop your bag in your office and head to your research lab. You are currently doing research on traditional uses of plants by Great Lakes Indians, and on the restoration of indigenous wild rice habitats in the lower peninsula of Michigan. In fact, you are developing a "wild rice camp" where students can participate in hands-on "ricing" projects. You have hired a couple of undergrads to work on these research projects with you. You meet them in your research lab and work with them for the next couple of hours.

10:30 a.m.: Advise, advise, advise. Back at your office, you try to make some phone calls to organize your rice research and the upcoming camp. You are regularly interrupted by student advisees, who drop in to your office, send you emails and call you.

Continue reading on Vault's Articles homepage where you can find many more Day in the Life(s), career advice, questions answered by our experts, industry overviews and much more.

Filed Under: CSR

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