A person with a knack for science and the desire to improve the world we live in may be the perfect candidate to go to school for an environmental engineering degree. An environmental engineer uses the basic principles of varied areas of science, including but not limited to biology, ecology, chemistry, architectural engineering, computer science and mechanical engineering, to improve the environment and all of its aspects. An environmental engineering degree is often a stepping stone for those who want to work in the areas of preserving, purifying and reducing the strain on natural resources.
There is a wide array of environmental engineering programs, ranging in scope from specialty certificate programs to two-year associate degrees, four-year bachelor of science degrees and graduate school environmental engineering courses. Choosing an environmental engineering school greatly depends upon the student's own personal needs and the amount of time that a person is able to commit to a program. Someone already working in the field of environmental engineering may wish to pursue certification from the Academy of Environmental Engineers, while another person may find it necessary to obtain a higher level environmental engineering degree to improve his job prospects.
Abachelor's environmental engineering degree is required for most entry level jobs within the field. It is important to note, however, that environmental engineers are not just restricted to the fields of environmental engineering. Environmental engineers may be found working in related fields, such as agricultural engineering, civil engineering and geological engineering. The flexibility and cross-training provided by a four-year educational program allows for greater prospects for employment.
There are more than 150 colleges and universities within the United States that offer students the option to pursue an environmental engineering degree. There are an equal number worldwide. For students who are considering an alternative route for education, there are numerous online and distance learning programs. These programs are designed to give the student the maximum amount of information so that the student can work at his or her own pace and around a schedule that may already be busy. Prospective students are encouraged to thoroughly research the environmental engineering school or schools of their choice, including reading reviews and speaking with current and former students and faculty to see if the school is a good match for them.