THE TRAINER

The Courier-Mail - Career One - - Learning Curve -

Name: Dr Peter Brooks Po­si­tion: Se­nior lec­turer in Chem­istry, School of Sci­ence and En­gi­neer­ing, Univer­sity of the Sun­shine Coast Skill tips: All good sci­en­tists need to have a broad skills base, be open minded to in­quiry with an eye for finer de­tails and have a dogged de­ter­mi­na­tion in see­ing the task through.

They can work for years re­search­ing com­plex prob­lems that re­quire team skills. The abil­ity to col­lab­o­rate with sci­en­tists from other fields is im­por­tant so as to gain the ev­i­dence that will lead to in­formed and bet­ter de­ci­sion mak­ing. En­vi­ron­men­tal sci­ence is a multi-dis­ci­pline field with in­ter­ac­tions be­tween bi­ol­ogy, botany, chem­istry, ecol­ogy and math­e­mat­ics.

A good en­vi­ron­men­tal sci­en­tist has a pas­sion for the en­vi­ron­ment, draw on di­verse skills and adapt to new chal­lenges. All en­vi­ron­men­tal­ists want to pro­tect the en­vi­ron­ment – the sci­en­tist pro­vides the proof that in­forms and drives change.

Univer­sity en­vi­ron­men­tal sci­ence de­grees have a broad sci­ence base so grad­u­at­ing sci­en­tists un­der­stand how earth, wa­ter, air, plants and an­i­mals in­ter­act and how the big pic­ture is de­pen­dent on all parts. Choices, di­ver­sity and spe­cial­i­sa­tions de­velop as the de­gree pro­gresses. Any­one con­sid­er­ing a ca­reer in en­vi­ron­men­tal sci­ence will re­quire a good bal­ance of pas­sion and an­a­lyt­i­cal think­ing.

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