Careers and Opportunities

ESS Department Resources

Undergraduate Opportunites

Looking for a job or internship in the Earth system or environmental sciences? The Undergraduate Opportunities site is a great place to start! Students should check the site on a regular basis. It is frequently updated with opportunities specifically for ESS students.

Earth System Science Club

The Earth System Science Club at UCI was formed for undergraduate students interested in the Earth system and environmental sciences. The club is run by students and supported by faculty and staff. Club members are invited to participate in activities like bi-weekly club meetings, volunteer opportunities, field trips, speaker presentations, career workshops, networking events and more.

ESS Study Abroad Petition

Interested in studying abroad? Use this petition to a substitution of an Earth System Science (B.S.) or Environmental Science and Policy (B.A.) major requirement with a course offered abroad.

Industry Networking Night

The Industry Networking Night is a networking event in Spring Quarter designed to introduce employers to undergraduates in the Department of Earth System Science. The event gives students the opportunity to learn about various career paths and job roles, and it offers companies exposure to the next generation of professionals who are actively seeking internships and entry-level jobs in the field.

ESS 192: Careers in ESS

Careers in ESS provides an opportunity for students majoring in Earth System Science or Environmental Science & Policy to learn about and develop the necessary skills needed to transition successfully from college to career.

ESS 197: Independent Study

Independent Study gives students the opportunity to earn academic credit for internships (field work, educational outreach, or other independent projects) under faculty direction.

Physical Sciences Mentoring Program

The Physical Sciences Undergraduate Mentoring Program pairs students with science professionals who assist them in developing the professional, interpersonal and networking skills critical to their career success.

ESS Employer Partners

We invite employers to join our team as ESS Employer Partners. Please click here to learn more.

UC Irvine Career Center Resources


ZotLink is UC Irvine’s job and internship listing database with over 22,000 jobs listed each year.

Career Fairs

A career fair is a one day event that provides students an opportunity to meet employers looking to hire for full- or part-time positions. The Career Center hosts a career fair every quarter.

Drop-in Advising at the Division of Career Pathways

The Division of Career Pathways offers drop-in 10 minute career consultations and resume critiques Monday - Friday from 11 am - 4 pm. No appointment necessary - first come, first served.

Workshops, Career Panels, Company Information Sessions, On-Campus Interviews & More!

Career Planning Tips and Tools

Professional Associations

The Oceanography Society: A non-profit organization founded to disseminate knowledge of oceanography and its application through research and education, to promote communication among oceanographers, and to provide a constituency for consensus-building across all the disciplines of the field. Student Membership: $30

The Women's Environmental Council: A non-profit association of women professionals in various environmental fields. Student Membership: $40

Earth System Science and Environmental Science Career Pathways

  • air/water quality management
  • atmospheric scientists (including meteorologists)
  • city and state environmental and natural resource regulators
  • college and university professors (graduate school required)
  • conservation scientists and foresters
  • consultants (with previous government / private sector experience)
  • environmental law
  • environmental policy and planning
  • environmental science and protection technicians
  • environmental scientists and specialists
  • forest and conservation technicians
  • geographers
  • geoscientists
  • hydrologists (graduate school required)
  • oceanography
  • planning and conservation
  • pollution cleanup specialist
  • public school earth science teachers
  • soil science
  • waste management

Career Exploration

Resource Reading Material

4 Ways To Use Facebook To Find A Job (Forbes, February 2014)

4 Non-Annoying Ways To Follow Up After An Interview (Forbes, May 2012)

5 Ways Your Resume is Screaming "Unprofessional" (OC Register, March 2014)

The Right Degree for the Job

A bachelor’s degree will qualify one for work as a laboratory assistant, technician, technologist or research assistant in education, industry and government. A bachelor’s degree is also sufficient for nontechnical work in writing, illustration, sales, photography and legislation.

A master’s degrees allow for greater specialization in a field and more opportunities in research and administration. Some community colleges will hire Master’s level teachers.

Doctoral degrees are necessary for advanced research and administrative positions, university teaching and independent research.


Department of Earth System Science
(949) 824-8794
3200 Croul Hall

UC Irvine Career Center
100 Student Services 1



The Department of Earth System Science acknowledges our presence on the ancestral and unceded territory of the Acjachemen and Tongva peoples, who still hold strong cultural, spiritual and physical ties to this region.