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Old 07-10-2008, 08:27 AM
4 posts, read 38,803 times
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My husband is currently employed as a Geologist for a mid-size quarrying company. He has a B.S. and 3 years of experience. He commutes 1.5 hours each way every day to get to work. The city that the company is located in is an industrial town (low-income, not v. good schools, etc.) and we don't want to move there. When he has searched for other jobs, there really aren't any for a geologist in our state (Iowa). We are young and adventurous and willing to move pretty much anywhere in the U.S., as long as the town is comfortable and safe, with good schools for our daughter. Does anyone know of a state with a lot of jobs for geologists, or have any job leads for a mid-size town with a quarrying company? Thank you!
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Old 07-10-2008, 08:44 AM
Location: Orange, California
1,573 posts, read 5,648,606 times
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I don't have any specific recommendations for you, but the thought occurred to me that, in addition to rock quarrying companies, the oil & gas industry might have a strong and consistent need for geologists. Oil and gas are taken from the ground, hence the need for geologists. When I think about oil and gas in the U.S., I think about Texas and Alaska. There might also be some opportunities in Canada -- the world's largest exporter of oil to the United States.
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Old 07-10-2008, 09:02 AM
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Thanks for the advice. He has thought about the oil/gas industry, but the problem in those fields is that most jobs for geologists are exploration jobs that require travel to foreign countries. While that would have been exciting when we were younger, it doesn't really work for us now that we have a 2 year old. Also, the working degree for a geologist in those industries is a Master's...
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Old 07-10-2008, 10:17 AM
Location: Middleton, Wisconsin
4,229 posts, read 15,404,059 times
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I would check out Wisconsin. We have many many areas I could see a Geologist needed. The driftless area of SW should offer some sort of information regarding. Or as another poster said check out Texas?
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Old 07-10-2008, 12:39 PM
Location: west Omaha
475 posts, read 2,040,189 times
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Old 07-10-2008, 02:59 PM
Location: Road Warrior
2,015 posts, read 5,004,008 times
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Colorado or Montana. The mayor of Denver is a former geologist turned brewer turned mayor. Personally if you want some sort of city a Big one I would go with Denver, Boulder region, something smaller I would go with Fort Collins, Helena, Missoula, Bozeman all great places. We all know the Rockies are historically the place for quarrying and currently are the Saudis of oil shale and might also be "the last best place to live" according to Montanans.
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Old 07-10-2008, 06:55 PM
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Nevada. UNR has a really good geology department...and if you can't find jobs through the school, the state itself has tons of research going on constantly (especially the northern part of the state).

I'll second (or third, actually!) Texas.
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Old 07-10-2008, 08:04 PM
Status: "0-0-2 start!" (set 13 days ago)
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley, Oregon
7,287 posts, read 15,336,812 times
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As your husband knows, geology jobs are few and far between, and the entry level degree is usually a Master's, if not a PhD. I have degrees in engineering as well as grad degrees in geology (and anthropology), and worked in hazards (earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, landslides) and environmental remediation. A lot of my classmates went to work for the various highway departments and the BLM/Forest Service. in addition to remediation. A few went into extraction, but not many, as the jobs just weren't there.

A few places (usually Schools of Mines) still teach hard rock and petroleum, but the last time there was a market for oil employment was prior to the early 80s - after that, a petroleum-related degree came with an offer to work in fast food. A lot of schools dropped hard rock and petroleum at that point. Most of the (American) oil exploration geologists are in their 60s and up, because younger ones have not been graduating into the field. The problem with moving to Colorado or Nevada or Texas is that he'd be competing with grads from Colorado School of Mines, UNR's program and a couple others.

The other thing it sounds like you're looking for is an "in town" job. That situation and geology aren't all that compatible. Check with some of the state highway departments (websites) and see who is hiring - although a recession means that might be scarce.

Were I going back to school again with the idea of a job in mind, one that kept me outdoors and near rocks, I'd be looking at civil engineering.
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Old 07-10-2008, 08:15 PM
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Finding a job in geological sciences isn't always necessarily contingent upon how "scenic and mountainous." a place is. There is geology everywhere.

My degree is in physical geography. I went to grad school in a small western town and have worked a couple short term jobs in the midwest. Right now I teach community college in Illinois.

My thesis involved mapping out buried soil horizons at an archaeological site in Colorado and have worked a couple short term positions doing archaeological surveys in places that had a high probability of having some pieces of flint/pottery shards that would have been damaged by development.

Does your husband have any experience with groundwater, groundwater flow/hydrogeology? Thats always a big field.
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Old 07-10-2008, 08:18 PM
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
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Try Rapid City or nearby Wyoming. Rapid City is home to the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, a prestigious engineering and geology school. Homestake Mine is in the Black Hills and has been converted from the world's largest gold mine into a neutrino and research facility.

Might be a place worth looking into!
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