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Career and Education Opportunities for Geological Specialists in Nashville-Davidson, Tennessee

If you want to be a geological specialist, the Nashville-Davidson, Tennessee area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 320 people are currently employed as geological specialists in Tennessee. By 2016, this is expected to grow 11% to about 360 people employed. This is not quite as good as the national trend for geological specialists, which sees this job pool growing by about 17.5% over the next eight years. In general, geological specialists study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the earth.

Income for geological specialists is about $23 hourly or $48,880 yearly on average in Tennessee. Nationally, their income is about $38 per hour or $79,160 yearly. Earnings for geological specialists are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Physical Sciences in Tennessee and better than general Physical Sciences category earnings nationally. People working as geological specialists can fill a number of jobs, such as: geomorphologist, geophysical laboratory director, and geophysical prospector.

There are fifty schools of higher education in the Nashville-Davidson area, including two within twenty-five miles of Nashville-Davidson where you can get a degree to start your career as a geological specialist. Geological specialists usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years training to become a geological specialist if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Geological Specialist

In general, geological specialists study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the earth. They also 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.

Geological specialists analyze and interpret geological, geochemical, and geophysical data from sources such as survey data and aerial photos. They also analyze and interpret geological data, using computer software. Finally, geological specialists search for and review research articles or environmental and technical reports.

Every day, geological specialists are expected to be able to read and understand documents and reports. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for geological specialists to formulate and conduct geological, geochemical, and geophysical field studies and surveys or drilling and testing programs used to collect data for research or application. They are often called upon to locate and estimate probable natural gas and mineral ore deposits and underground water resources, using aerial photographs or research and survey results. They also identify deposits of construction materials, and assess the materials' characteristics and suitability for use as concrete aggregates or in other applications. They are sometimes expected to ready geological maps, cross-sectional diagrams and reports concerning mineral extraction and resource management, using results of field work and laboratory research. Somewhat less frequently, geological specialists are also expected to assess ground and surface water movement to furnish advice regarding issues such as waste management, route and site selection, and the restoration of contaminated sites.

Geological specialists sometimes are asked to layout geological mine maps, monitor mine structural integrity, or advise and monitor mining crews. They also have to be able to communicate geological findings by writing research papers, participating in conferences, or teaching geological science at universities and design applied software for the analysis and interpretation of geological data. And finally, they sometimes have to measure characteristics of the Earth, such as gravity and magnetic fields, using equipment such as seismographs and magnetometers.

Like many other jobs, geological specialists must be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Nashville-Davidson include:

  • Astronomer. Observe, research, and interpret celestial and astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge and apply such information to practical problems.
  • 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.
  • Hydrologist. 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.
  • Scientist. Study the chemical composition and physical principles of living cells and organisms, their electrical and mechanical energy, and related phenomena. May conduct research to further understanding of the complex chemical combinations and reactions involved in metabolism, reproduction, and heredity. May determine the effects of foods, drugs, and other substances on tissues and vital processes of living organisms.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Geological Specialist Training

Middle Tennessee State University - Murfreesboro, TN

Middle Tennessee State University, 1301 East Main Street, Murfreesboro, TN 37132. Middle Tennessee State University is a large university located in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 23,872 students and an admission rate of 65%. Middle Tennessee State University has a bachelor's degree and a postbaccalaureate certificate program in Geology/Earth Science which graduated twelve and one students respectively in 2008.

Vanderbilt University - Nashville, TN

Vanderbilt University, 2101 West End Avenue, Nashville, TN 37240. Vanderbilt University is a large university located in Nashville, Tennessee. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 12,093 students and an admission rate of 25%. Vanderbilt University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Geology/Earth Science.

CERTIFICATIONS

ACSM Hydrographer Certification: ACSM - THSOA Hydrographer Certification is well-recognized and considered by many Federal, State and local agencies as well as private firms, seeking subcontractors when evaluating technical proposals for marine engineering, surveying, and construction.

For more information, see the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping - National Society of Professional Surveyors 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.

LICENSES

GEOLOGIST

Licensing agency: Geology Registration Section
Address: Division of Regulatory Boards, Department of Commerce and Insruance, Davy Crockett Tower 2d Floor, 500 James Robertson Pkwy, Nashville, TN 37243

Phone: (615) 741-3449
Website: Geology Registration Section Division of Regulatory Boards Department of Commerce and Insruance

PROFESSIONAL GEOLOGIST

Licensing agency: Geology Registration Section
Address: Division of Regulatory Boards, Department of Commerce and Insruance, Davy Crockett Tower 2d Floor, 500 James Robertson Pkwy, Nashville, TN 37243

Phone: (615) 741-3449
Website: Geology Registration Section Division of Regulatory Boards Department of Commerce and Insruance

LOCATION INFORMATION: Nashville-Davidson, Tennessee

Nashville-Davidson, Tennessee
Nashville-Davidson, Tennessee photo by Kaldari

Nashville-Davidson is located in Williamson County, Tennessee. It has a population of over 596,462, which has grown by 9.3% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Nashville-Davidson, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Nashville-Davidson are priced at $196,100 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, 1,483 new homes were constructed in Nashville-Davidson, down from 3,070 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Nashville-Davidson are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, health care, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 29.7% of Nashville-Davidson residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Nashville-Davidson residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 55.2%, is more than both the national and state average. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.