We’ve got a gorgeous state here in New Mexico, a hidden treasure that has somehow remained hidden from much of the country despite our diverse hiking, skiing, fishing, and biking opportunities.
Those environmental elements that make New Mexico great for all those activities and more exist in a fundamental tension with how we make a living here, though. Oil drilling, mining, and cattle ranching are big industries, and all require a careful balance of ecological necessity against profit motive.
Ensuring that New Mexico remains not only a great place to live but a good place to make a living is in the hands of our sustainability experts. Well-trained, highly-educated men and women working in government, non-profits, and private industry are all responsible for striking the right balance.
Getting the education required for such positions is a snap at New Mexico’s universities.
Sustainability Jobs Available in New Mexico With the Right Degree
While it’s true that we have more higher education institutions with sustainability degrees scattered around the state than most people suspect, we’re still a little under-gunned when it comes to sustainability jobs. There are occasional openings for sustainability professionals at non-profits such as the Land Conservancy, or at commercial construction and consulting firms either based or operating here.
One saving grace for sustainability experts seeking employment in New Mexico, though, may be the high-quality jobs that come from our significant federal installations. White Sands and Los Alamos National Laboratories both have vast tracts of land that is protected under national laws, and also a legacy of experiments that have created some sustainability challenges. Consequently, jobs are often available that take advantage of the skillsets that come with a sustainability education.
Master’s in Sustainability Available Through Schools in New Mexico
Although we’re not one of the more populous states, New Mexico has a lot more universities than you might imagine. There are some excellent sustainability programs running here at both the big schools you are familiar with and some of the smaller ones you might not be.
New Mexico State University is the place to go for a master’s degree in sustainable agriculture practices. The Agricultural Economics and Agricultural Business master’s program covers the elements of sustainability from an economic perspective as well as with a sensitivity to environmental realities.
Architecture and Development
The Master of Landscape Architecture offered but the University of New Mexico is the premier sustainable architectural and development degree in the state. You’ll learn about the principle and theory behind the field as well as the practical elements of architectural design and implementation in the larger context of social, environmental, and evolutionary influences on landscapes.
UNM comes at sustainability issues from a business angle, too, with their Master of Arts in Economics with International/Development and Sustainability Economics. It’s a masterclass in a neglected aspect of sustainability that is ultimately important to every other part of the field, namely, how much does sustainability cost and how much can it save? You’ll find the answers here!
In Socorro, you can get one of the state’s finest Master of Science in Environmental Engineering degrees courtesy of the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology. You’ll find a unique educational and research experience here, customized to each individual to cater to your personal career goals and the expertise available at NMT. With both thesis and independent study options, you should have no trouble putting together a curriculum ideally suited to your capabilities.
Sustainability Bachelor Degree Programs in New Mexico
To get you started on the right foot toward either a graduate degree in the field or a lucrative position working in sustainability, you need to start off with a bachelor’s degree. The BA/BS in Sustainable Development from Western New Mexico University in Silver City is a good bet for either purpose.
Studying the interconnection between environment and society, the degree prepares you for a career as a steward of sustainability in aspects ranging from urban planning to research to resource management.