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Tips for Finding a Green Collar Job

Tips for Finding a Green Collar Job

Kath Ladipo | Guest Writer


Beneath the embers of the present day “gloom and doom” of the traditional job market flickers a new and thriving “Green Collar” job (GCJ) market. In some American towns and cities, GCJs abound. When it happens in your town, will you be ready?





What is a GCJ?

A GCJ describes locally-based employment that provides decent livable wages and opportunities for career and professional growth in an occupation that directly contributes to environmental preservation and enhancement. If any one of these factors is excluded, the job is not a GCJ.


What types are jobs are GCJs?

In many cases, GCJs are existing jobs that are being recast or expanded to reflect the demand for environmentally friendly products and services. In other cases, the job has never before existed. Examples of GCJs are: construction workers, truck drivers, sheet metal workers, machinists, environmental engineers, industrial production managers, automobile engineers and designers, mass transit employees at all levels, energy auditors, wind and turbine machinist, carpenters, roofers, building inspectors, solar panel installers, and water quality consultants.

How to snag a Green Collar Job

If GCJs are appealing, below is list of steps that can help you secure that goal:

  • Educate yourself about environmental issues and the steps, programs goals and initiatives being launched by the local, State and Federal governments to address this issues.
  • Familiarize yourself with the lingo and unmask the myth of green collar jobs
  • Research and monitor the Internet for resources that discuss trends, list job opportunities, and provide access to “green” company profiles.
  • Make a decision about what career path would make a good fit for you.
  • Contact “green” organizations and local employment agencies to inquire about and enroll in GCJ training and certification programs that match your interests.
  • Attend “green” social or political events and job fairs for the purpose of establishing a social and professional “green” network.
  • Go Direct! Volunteer with a “green” nonprofit or become an intern for a “green” company to gain experience in your chose field.
  • Identify, explore, and take advantage of pre-apprenticeship programs to more knowledge about all things “green” without going back to school.
  • Finally, if you do not already have it, develop a strong conviction for protecting the environment, as this may be the only thing that separates you from the competition.

More reading and studies about Green Collar Jobs:

(PDF) Green Cities: A Living Cities Report
(PDF) Green Cities Analysis of Berkley, CA
(PDF) Green-Collar Jobs in America’s Cities


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