A Career as an Environmental Microbiologist

Environmental MicrobiologistEnvironmental Microbiology is in vogue ever since scientists are studying microbes in the natural surroundings. It is basically the study of the changes in the environment as a result of various bacteria, parasites, fungi, viruses, algae and many others. Scientists who study about soil, ocean, and atmosphere at a micro level are often referred to as Environmental Microbiology.

Environmental Microbiology is involved with a detailed study of micro-organisms present in the environment around us. The study is primarily undertaken to find out the effect of these organisms on chemical cycles of the soil, ocean, and atmosphere. The effect of pollution is also researched along with this. They throw a light on the effect of human action on micro- organisms and their habitat. Environmental Biology collates the study of all natural systems, earth, air, water, plants and animals on one platform.

Environmental Microbiology students find jobs in varied sectors of the economy. Jobs in the field of agriculture, forestry, pollution control, environmentalist to name a few. Environmental Microbiologist also pursues marine ecologists and study aquatic animals. Some go on to become Oceanographers as well.

Eligibility Criterion to becoming an Environmental Microbiologist:

In order to become an Environmental Microbiologist, it is mandatory to have a 10+2 with Physics, Chemistry, and Biology can study B.Sc in Microbiology. B.Sc in Biological Sciences with Zoology and Botany can study M.Sc in Microbiology and Applied Microbiology from all the State and Central Universities in India.

The following universities are offering courses in Microbiology. Universities in the eastern region are:

a) University of Calcutta, West Bengal
b) University of Kalyani, West Bengal
c) Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology, Bhubaneshwar, Odisha
d) Manipur University, Univ Canchipur, Imphal

Environmental Microbiologists can also go for a Ph.D. or Post-Doctoral Level Study. Many Universities in the USA provide courses and degrees in Environmental Microbiology.

Personal Attributes of an Environmental Microbiologist:

The skills that an Environmental Microbiologist should possess are:

• adaptability to a range of different working environments.
• excellent observational skills
• creativity and problem-solving skill
• ability to gather and interpret data
• an inquisitive mind and the ability to analyze data
• presentation and writing skills
• a sense of professionalism, dedication, and enthusiasm for the work
• physical stamina to withstand fieldwork under rough conditions

Career Prospects of a student of Environmental Microbiology:

The changes that are affecting our mother earth is on the rise. Global Warming, the rise in pollution levels are affecting air, water, atmosphere, animals and humans equally. Thus the need for an Environmental Microbiologist is on a rise. Researchers who delve into Environmental Microbiology work for various state agencies, Conservation bodies, Universities, and Institutes. The job also involves writing detailed research reports, collecting data from the natural environment and analyzing it.

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