Career and Education Opportunities for Hydrologists in Anchorage, Alaska
There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for hydrologists in the Anchorage, Alaska area. The national trend for hydrologists sees this job pool growing by about 18.2% over the next eight years. Hydrologists generally research the distribution, circulation, and physical properties of underground and surface waters; study the form and intensity of precipitation, its rate of infiltration into the soil, movement through the earth, and its return to the ocean and atmosphere.
Hydrologists earn about $36 hourly or $76,350 annually on average in Alaska and about $34 hourly or $71,450 yearly on average nationally. Incomes for hydrologists are better than in the overall category of Physical Sciences in Alaska, and not quite as good as the overall Physical Sciences category nationally. Hydrologists work in a variety of jobs, including: hydrologic engineer, water resources program director, and seismologist.
There are four schools of higher education in the Anchorage area, including two within twenty-five miles of Anchorage where you can get a degree to start your career as a hydrologist. Given that the most common education level for hydrologists is a Master's degree, you can expect to spend about six years training to become a hydrologist if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years if you have a Bachelor's degree.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Hydrologist
In general, hydrologists research the distribution, circulation, and physical properties of underground and surface waters; study the form and intensity of precipitation, its rate of infiltration into the soil, movement through the earth, and its return to the ocean and atmosphere.
Hydrologists study and document quantities, distribution and development of underground and surface waters. They also evaluate research data in terms of its impact on issues such as soil and water conservation, flood control planning, and water supply forecasting. Equally important, hydrologists have to design or modify methods of conducting hydrologic studies. They are often called upon to answer questions and furnish technical assistance and data to contractors or the public regarding issues such as well drilling and geology. They are expected to study public water supply issues, including flood and drought risks, water quality and impacts on wetland habitats. Finally, hydrologists evaluate data and furnish recommendations regarding the feasibility of municipal projects, such as hydroelectric power plants, irrigation systems, flood warning systems, and waste treatment facilities.
Every day, hydrologists are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they write clearly and communicate well.
It is important for hydrologists to investigate properties, origins, and movements of glaciers and permafrost. They are often called upon to layout civil works associated with hydrographic efforts and supervise their construction and maintenance. They also conduct research and communicate data to promote the conservation and preservation of water resources. They are sometimes expected to compile and evaluate hydrologic data to ready navigational charts and maps and to predict atmospheric conditions. Somewhat less frequently, hydrologists are also expected to compile and evaluate hydrologic data to ready navigational charts and maps and to predict atmospheric conditions.
Hydrologists sometimes are asked to direct and supervise the work of professional and technical staff, including research assistants and technicians. They also have to be able to administer programs designed to insure the proper sealing of abandoned wells And finally, they sometimes have to design or modify methods of conducting hydrologic studies.
Like many other jobs, hydrologists must have exceptional integrity and be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Anchorage include:
- Chemist. Conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or chemical experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
- Environmental Health and Safety Specialist. Conduct research or perform investigation for the purpose of identifying, abating, or eliminating sources of pollutants or hazards that affect either the environment or the health of the population. Utilizing knowledge of various scientific disciplines may collect, synthesize, and take action based on data derived from measurements or observations of air, food, and other sources.
- Geological Specialist. Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the earth. May use geological, physics, and mathematics knowledge in exploration for oil, gas, or underground water; or in waste disposal, land reclamation, or other environmental problems. May study the earth's internal composition, atmospheres, and its magnetic, electrical, and gravitational forces. Includes mineralogists, crystallographers, and seismologists.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Hydrologist Training
University of Alaska Anchorage - Anchorage, AK
University of Alaska Anchorage, 3211 Providence Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508. University of Alaska Anchorage is a large university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,649 students and an admission rate of 68%. University of Alaska Anchorage has a bachelor's degree program in Geology/Earth Science which graduated two students in 2008.
Alaska Pacific University - Anchorage, AK
Alaska Pacific University, 4101 University Dr, Anchorage, AK 99508. Alaska Pacific University is a small university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 795 students and an admission rate of 93%. Alaska Pacific University has a bachelor's degree program in Geology/Earth Science.
Certified Water Technologist: The Certified Water Technologist (CWT) program represents the highest professional credential in the industrial and commercial water treatment field.
For more information, see the Association of Water Technologies website.
Certified Ground Water Professional: The Ground Water Professional certification program began for AGWSE members in 1986.
For more information, see the National Ground Water Association website.
Erosion and Sediment Control Certification: This certification program was designed for engineering technicians engaged in all phases of erosion and sediment control work.
For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.
Licensing agency: Alaska Department of Commerce, Community & Economic Development
Address: Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing, Attn: Geologists, P.O. Box 110806, Juneau, AK 99811-0806
LOCATION INFORMATION: Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage is located in Anchorage Municipality County, Alaska. It has a population of over 279,243, which has grown by 7.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Anchorage, 89, is well below the national average.
The top three industries for women in Anchorage are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 28.9% of Anchorage residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.2%, is higher than the state average.
Anchorage is home to the Chugach and the Black Bear Campground as well as Baxter Bog Park and Alaska Railroad Power Reserve. Visitors to Anchorage can choose from Courtyard Anchorage, Creekwood Inn and The Voyager Hotel for temporary stays in the area.