Insight News

Feb 13th

(Plan Your Career) Gearing up for tomorrow’s green jobs

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Anna Pesola is an artist, welder and savvy career planner.  Constantly striving to improve her marketability, she is applying this summer to engineering schools, hoping to achieve a degree in Renewable Energy Engineering.  Only one school offers this degree at this time, but Anna sees this program as not the Only, but the First, of its kind.  Anna is on the pulse of what America’s next wave of jobs are going to be about.   According to one survey, the current 8 million green jobs could grow to as much as 30 million positions over the next 20 years.  That’s something to get excited about – and to plan for.

According to the publication Occupational Outlook, research shows the scope of America’s jobs changing significantly over the next decade.  An aging population means we can expect more work in professional services including accounting, estate planning and wealth management , and a changing world is driving a demand for clean energy. 

While utilities companies will improve their use of technology, requiring fewer workers, these companies will need more knowledgeable workers to develop their technology (think anything computers) and skilled professionals to physically design and build and install green improvements.  If your expertise is in computers, architecture or engineering, it is time to green-up your toolbox.   If you are talented in construction, your skills will be in high demand. 

Other jobs gaining traction as a result of growing awareness of the environment include ecotourism, agriculture, research, alternative energy product development and even bicycle repair. 

Finding green jobs may require some effort.  Many companies focusing on renewable energy are start-ups or relatively young companies.  They may not have the financial or staffing resources to advertise their positions on traditional job boards.  Networking into the renewable energy community is a good place to start.  Pay attention, too, to companies winning awards for their efforts in renewable energy.  These are the organizations that will be successful – and hiring – down the road.
President Obama wants every American to go back to school.  Financial Aid packages have improved, and many people have the time on their hands to do this right now.  But those who cannot fit formal education into the picture right now should find other ways to align their skills with the jobs that are on the horizon. 

Please send your career planning questions to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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