Little Rock has always embraced its role as a trendsetter in Arkansas, so it’s only befitting that its sustainability efforts are some of the coolest around.
The Heifer International Center in downtown Little Rock stands proud as a model for sustainability, featuring a platinum LEED certified building and only the most innovative environmental techniques for both energy and water conservation. Plus, it’s home to the Heifer Urban Farm, a three-acre, multi-purpose garden that serves a number of Arkansas food networks.
The Arkansas River Trail, which draws visitors to its 17 miles of picturesque trails connected by pedestrian and bicycle bridges, and the Fourche Creek Wetlands, one of the country’s largest urban wetlands, are just a few of the many conservation efforts that make Little Rock as beautiful as it is sustainable.
Even the University of Arkansas at Little Rock is an active participant in the city’s sustainability efforts, thanks to the work of the UA Little Rock Sustainability Committee, whose primary goals include making UA Little Rock a zero-waste university and awarding grants for research aimed at the development and promotion of sustainability.
Whether your interests lie in engineering, public policy, management, or technology, there’s a place for you among Arkansas’ sustainability efforts. With the right degree by your side, you’ll be able to lend your talents to some of the outstanding work being accomplished here.
Sustainability Jobs Available in Arkansas with the Right Degree
If you’re looking for organizations and agencies in Arkansas that are aimed at sustainability, you don’t have to look far. From Fayetteville to Fort Smith, organizations dedicated to conserving, preserving, and managing our natural resources are abundant.
The Arkansas Local Food Network, the Center for Agricultural and Rural Sustainability at the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, Feed Fayetteville, the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative, and the Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group are just some of the many nonprofits here dedicated to local farmers, sustainable agriculture, and community prosperity.
The Arkansas Recycling Coalition is another big name in sustainability in Arkansas. Their efforts are aimed at promoting the value of reducing, reusing, repurposing, and recycling among private businesses, nonprofits, and governmental agencies.
The Ozark Regional Land Trust works to protect the more than 28,000 acres in the Ozarks from urban development and subdivision. Their work includes creating conservation easements and nature preserves and working with other conservation agencies throughout the state to develop land trusts that serve to protect the land’s natural and geological features and preserve urban green space, historic locations, and agriculture land.
While earning potential among professions in sustainability will vary, 2018 BLS statistics reveal that that these occupations enjoy competitive salaries across the board. For example, the average salary for environmental scientists in Arkansas is $58,540, while conservation scientists here earn an average of $70,630. Engineering professionals in sustainability earn even more, with civil engineers earning an average salary of $81,780 and environmental engineers earning an average of $89,540.
Master’s in Sustainability Available Through Schools in Arkansas
A master’s degree in sustainability is where you’ll gain expertise in a specific field of study, which is why these programs are typically focused on areas like policy, business, and technology.
The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff’s School of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Human Sciences offers an MS in Aquaculture/Fisheries, the only program of its kind in Arkansas. This research-based program offers advanced study in areas like fisheries management and ecology, aquaculture engineering, fish health/pathology, and fisheries and ecological modeling.
Arkansas Tech University offers a similar grad degree in fisheries, the MS in Fisheries & Wildlife Science, which builds on the tradition of education designed specifically for the state’s wildlife professionals.
The University of Arkansas at Monticello’s MS in Forest Resources, an in-depth examination into the ecological and sociological aspects of natural resources management, offers four emphasis areas that guarantee a focused course of study: forest science, geospatial science, wildlife ecology and management, and natural resources management.
Arkansas State University’s MS in Environmental Sciences provides students with a broad examination into the field of environmental science. You’ll study a number of areas through this program, including environmental policy, law and economics, environmental chemistry/soil and water science, and more.
Sustainability Bachelor Degree Programs in Arkansas
Bachelor’s degrees in sustainability are the ideal introduction to the field and to careers in sustainability. Fortunately, Arkansas is home to a variety of these programs designed to set your career in motion.
Arkansas Tech University offers a number of undergraduate options for aspiring sustainability professionals, including bachelor’s degrees in biology, environmental science, and fisheries & wildlife.
The University of Arkansas at Monticello also offers a nice variety of sustainability bachelor’s degrees, including a BS in Natural Resources Management and a BS in Agriculture, while the University of Arkansas offers a unique bachelor’s program in agriculture with a focus in Sustainable Horticulture. This program prepares students for careers in resource management and planning, consulting, and public service.