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Career and Education Opportunities for Soil Scientists in Cheyenne, Wyoming

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for soil scientists in the Cheyenne, Wyoming area. The national trend for soil scientists sees this job pool growing by about 15.5% over the next eight years. In general, soil scientists conduct research in breeding, physiology, and management of crops and agricultural plants, their growth in soils, and control of pests; or study the chemical, physical, and mineralogical composition of soils as they relate to plant or crop growth.

Soil scientists earn approximately $20 hourly or $42,670 yearly on average in Wyoming. Nationally they average about $28 hourly or $58,390 annually. Incomes for soil scientists are not quite as good as in the overall category of Life Sciences in Wyoming, and not quite as good as the overall Life Sciences category nationally. Jobs in this field include: arboriculturist, viticulturist, and agronomy research manager.

The Cheyenne area is home to four schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Cheyenne where you can get a degree as a soil scientist. Given that the most common education level for soil scientists is a Bachelor's degree, it will take about four years to learn to be a soil scientist if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Soil Scientist

In general, soil scientists conduct research in breeding, physiology, and management of crops and agricultural plants, their growth in soils, and control of pests; or study the chemical, physical, and mineralogical composition of soils as they relate to plant or crop growth. They also may classify and map soils and investigate effects of alternative practices on soil and crop productivity.

Soil scientists communicate research and project results to other professionals and the public or teach related courses or workshops. They also design ways of altering soils to suit different types of plants. Equally important, soil scientists have to investigate responses of soils to specific management practices to establish the use capabilities of soils and the effects of alternative practices on soil productivity. They are often called upon to investigate soil problems and poor water quality to establish sources and effects. They are expected to furnish data and recommendations to farmers and other landowners regarding ways in which they can best use land, promote plant growth, and avoid or correct problems such as erosion. Finally, soil scientists perform chemical analyses of the microorganism content of soils to establish microbial reactions and chemical mineralogical relationships to plant growth.

Every day, soil scientists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they think through problems and come up with general rules.

It is important for soil scientists to conduct experiments investigating how soil forms and interacts with land-based ecosystems and living organisms. They are often called upon to furnish advice regarding the development of regulatory standards for land reclamation and soil conservation. They also confer with engineers and other technical personnel working on construction projects about the effects of soil problems and possible solutions to these problems. They are sometimes expected to formulate and supervise land conservation and reclamation programs for industrial development projects, and waste management programs for composting and farming. Somewhat less frequently, soil scientists are also expected to study insect distribution and habitat and recommend methods to inhibit importation and spread of injurious species.

Soil scientists sometimes are asked to identify and classify species of insects and allied forms. And finally, they sometimes have to conduct experiments investigating how soil forms and interacts with land-based ecosystems and living organisms.

Like many other jobs, soil scientists 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 Cheyenne include:

  • Biologist. Research or study basic principles of plant and animal life, such as origin, relationship, and functions.
  • Chemist. Conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or chemical experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
  • Food Technologist. Use chemistry, microbiology, and other sciences to study the principles underlying the processing and deterioration of foods; analyze food content to determine levels of vitamins, fat, and protein; discover new food sources; research ways to make processed foods safe, palatable, and healthful; and apply food science knowledge to determine best ways to process, package, and distribute food.
  • Natural Resource Manager. Research or study range land management practices to provide sustained production of forage, livestock, and wildlife.
  • Park Ranger. Plan, develop, and conduct programs to inform public of historical, natural, and scientific features of national, state, or local park.
  • Soil Conservation Technician. Plan and develop coordinated practices for soil erosion control, soil and water conservation, and sound land use.
  • Zoologist. Study the origins, behavior, and life processes of animals and wildlife. May specialize in wildlife research and management, including the collection and analysis of biological data to determine the environmental effects of present and potential use of land and water areas.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Soil Scientist Training

Laramie County Community College - Cheyenne, WY

Laramie County Community College, 1400 E College Dr, Cheyenne, WY 82007-3299. Laramie County Community College is a small college located in Cheyenne, Wyoming. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 4,250 students. Laramie County Community College has an associate's degree program in Agriculture which graduated two students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Crop Advisor: The American Society of Agronomy's Certified Crop Adviser Program (CCA).

For more information, see the American Society of Agronomy - ARCPACS website.

Certified Professional Agronomist: This certification is designed for the agronomist that advises growers on agronomic practices, conducts training programs for other agronomists, conducts research, manages other agronomists, or provides technical support to field agronomists and can meet the standards of the program.

For more information, see the American Society of Agronomy - ARCPACS website.

Certified Professional Soil Scientist: Certification programs offered by SSSA are voluntary, but offer similar benefits to the public as licensing programs.

For more information, see the American Society of Agronomy - ARCPACS website.

Accredited Agricultural Consultant: The Accredited Agricultural Consultant (AAC) designation was developed and first offered by the ASFMRA in 1997.

For more information, see the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers website.

Associate Certified Entomologist: The Entomological Society of America, long the industry leader in certification through its Board Certified Entomologist (BCE) program, is pleased to announce a new certification option geared specifically toward the pest management industry.

For more information, see the Entomological Society of America website.

Arborist / Municipal Specialist: This credential was developed by the ISA and the Society of Municipal Arboriculture for those involved in managing the complex aspect of trees in an urban environment.

For more information, see the International Society of Arboriculture website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Cheyenne, Wyoming

Cheyenne, Wyoming
Cheyenne, Wyoming photo by CommonsHelper2 Bot

Cheyenne is situated in Laramie County, Wyoming. It has a population of over 56,915, which has grown by 7.4% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Cheyenne, 85, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Cheyenne are priced at $129,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, one hundred sixty new homes were constructed in Cheyenne, down from three hundred eleven the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Cheyenne are health care, public administration, and educational services. For men, it is public administration, construction, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 15 minutes. More than 24.5% of Cheyenne residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.5%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Cheyenne is 6.7%, which is less than Wyoming's average of 6.8%. About 8.8% of Cheyenne's residents are below the poverty line, which is better than the state average.

The percentage of Cheyenne residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 47.7%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Calvary Church, Morrie Avenue Church and Full Gospel Church are some of the churches located in Cheyenne. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Cheyenne is home to the Wyo Plaza and the Cheyenne Country Club as well as Cahill Park and Pioneer Park. Shopping malls in the area include Indian Hills Shopping Center, Frontier Mall and Frontier Square Shopping Center. Visitors to Cheyenne can choose from Quality Inn Cheyenne, Motel 6 and Cheyenne Super 8 Motel for temporary stays in the area.