Careers with a Human Ecology Degree

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What You Can Do with a Human Ecology Degree

Human ecology programs often incorporate elements of social sciences, as well as design and technology in their curriculum.


This multidisciplinary approach helps prepare you to become an effective professional in careers where you will be solving complex problems that help meet the changing needs of individuals, families, communities, and consumers.


For example, with a human ecology degree, you will have the foundation to succeed in career fields that vary from graphic design, to cultural diversity consulting, to fashion merchandising.





Job Board for Human Ecology Students & Grads





Although some careers related to a human ecology degree require further education and training (Nutritionist and Lawyer among others), this degree serves as excellent preparation for advanced study in areas related to these careers, such as Nutrition, Law, Social Sciences, Public Policy, Family Studies and many others.


So, if you want to know more about where this degree can take you, read on below. This human ecology careers guide contains detailed occupational information on career paths relevant to this degree. Included are job descriptions, expected salaries, educational requirements and other pertinent information related to these careers. We’ve also included human ecology-specific scholarships to help you pay for school!




Career Guides Related to a Human Ecology Degree

The knowledge and skills you can gain by studying human ecology at the university level serve as an excellent foundation for a variety of careers.


Below, we’ve chosen careers that we feel relate to a human ecology degree, either because the subject matter of the degree relates to the occupational field, or because the skills you’ll need to be an effective employee can be gained in a human ecology degree program. Please note, this is not an inclusive list:


Adult Education Instructor

Art Director

Art Gallery Curator


Career Counselor

Community Care Coordinator

Community Planner

Consumer Advocate

Costume Designer

Credit Counselor

Department Manager

Diversity Consultant

Elementary School Teacher



Event Planner

Exhibit Designer

Fabric Designer


Fashion Buyer

Fashion Designer

Fashion Illustrator

Fashion Journalist

Fashion Merchandiser


Food Safety Auditor

Funeral Director

Furniture Designer

Game Tester

Geriatric Care Manager


Home Economist

• Industrial Designer

Interior Decorator

Interior Design Consultant

Interior Designer

Layout Designer

Magazine Designer

Multiculturalism Liaison Officer

Nutrition Consultant

Package Designer

Professional Organizer

Project Assistant

Public Health Inspector

Public Relations Specialist

Quality Control Specialist

Recreation Therapist

Retail Buyer

Retail Sales Associate

Safety Coordinator

Sales Representative

Set Designer

Textiles Production Manager

Toy Designer

University Professor

Urban Planner

Visual Merchandiser

Volunteer Coordinator

Web Designer

Wedding Planner


Please Note: Some of the above listed careers require additional education, training and/or experience. Click on careers that are of interest to you to find out more about the qualifications you’ll need.



Employable Skills of Human Ecology Graduates

As a result of the classroom and hands-on work in human ecology, you’ll be armed with a knowledge base and skill set that you can apply to a wide variety of careers. These skills include:


• Knowledge of consumer interests and related marketing techniques

• Able to create effective merchandising strategies

• Proficiency in Computer Aided Design (CAD) techniques

• Able to create and disseminate consumer related data and information

• Able to effectively integrate scientific, aesthetic and social values into complex decision-making concerning public issues

• The ability to develop and deliver programs related to topics such as human relationships, family systems, food, nutrition, clothing/textiles and financial management 



Who Hires Human Ecology Graduates?

Human Ecology graduates are equipped with a unique and diverse skill set. Most graduates have at least a basic level of knowledge in areas as diverse as nutrition, interior design, graphic design, family sciences, communications, marketing and many other areas.


That’s a lot to bring to the table as an employee, wouldn't you agree? As a result of these diverse skills, many different types of employers are interested in human ecology graduates, including:


• Arts organizations

• Community based organizations

• Credit counseling services

• Family counseling services

• Financial sales agencies

• Food manufacturers, retailers and marketers

• Government agencies

• Health services

• High schools and universities

• Homebuilders

• Human services agencies

• Interior design firms

• International development agencies

• Museums and galleries

• Non-profit organizations

• Nutrition consulting agencies

• Philanthropic organizations

• Recreation groups/organizations

• Retail goods manufacturers, outlets or marketers

• Self-employment

• Textile manufacturers and distributors

• Utility companies




Human Ecology Jobs!

Whether you're a geology student looking for a job to help you pay for school, or a graduate looking for an entry or mid-level job, our job board has opportunities directly and indirectly related to your human ecology degree.


Find Human Ecology Job Opportunities







Areas of Focus in Human Ecology

Human ecology programs typically offer areas of focus you can pursue within the general degree. Pursuing a specialty is a great way to sharpen your skills in a specific area if you have a definitive career path in mind. These areas typically include, but are not limited to:


• Family & Child Studies/Sciences

• Nutrition & Dietetics

• Merchandising & Consumer Studies/Science

• Design Studies

• Clothing, Materials & Textile Culture/Studies

• Non-Profit Leadership

• Community Education



Human Ecology Graduate Salary

The salary you could earn as a human ecology graduate first entering the workforce can vary drastically, and is heavily dependent on the following factors (not an inclusive list):


• Your level of education (such as if you went on to graduate studies)

• The industry in which you find work

• The type of job you have, and your level of responsibility

• The size and type of your employer

• The region in which you work

• Other work experience you may have accrued

• Other skills you may have


Human Ecology Graduate Salary Ontario: According to a study in 2011 conducted by the Ontario Council of Universities, $50,760 CAD* is the average salary earned by “Other Arts and Science” graduates, 2 years after graduating from Ontario universities in 2010.


*This figure is a composite of all graduates who earned a Bachelor’s degree in “Other Arts and Science”, not specifically for Human Ecology graduates. Unfortunately, similar statistics for other Canadian provinces and the United States cannot be found from reputable sources.



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Gaining Experience in Human Ecology Careers Before Graduation

Pursuing an internship (for our purposes also known as a practicum, field placement, or co-op work opportunity) in a career field related to your human ecology degree is the best way to gain relevant work experience while you’re still in school. These opportunities allow you to gain professional competencies, while simultaneously offering employers valuable temporary team members.


An internship position can also result in being hired by the sponsoring organization upon graduation. If you’ve done quality work and made a good impression, chances are that organization will want to retain you on a full-time basis once you’ve graduated. They will already be familiar with you and your work ethic, and they will save a great deal of time and expense trying to recruit someone else.



How Do I Find a Human Ecology Internship?

If these opportunities are an academic requirement, you will likely have the opportunity arranged for you, or at least a variety of potential options presented to you. If it is not a requirement, speak with your professors, other human ecology department staff as well as your school’s guidance and career counselors to help you find a suitable opportunity.


Please Note: Be extremely cautious if pursuing an opportunity that is not directly arranged or facilitated by your school. You may not receive proper school credit for your work, or financial compensation, as many of these opportunities operate in the grey area of the law, and seek to exploit students.



Human Ecology Scholarships

If you’re a human ecology major looking for help in paying for school, then you’re in luck! Our scholarships database has Canadian and American scholarships that are specific to human ecology, as well as scholarships that are open to any field of study.


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any and all scholarships for which you qualify, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships in Canada and the United States that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants.



Professional Associations for Careers in Human Ecology

To find out more about careers directly related to your human ecology degree, consult the following professional association websites. They offer career-related information, and many have opportunities for student membership, as well as job placement and mentoring opportunities.



Canadian Art Museum Directors Association

Canadian Association of Credit Counselling Services

Dietitians of Canada

The Society of Graphic Designer of Canada


United States

AIGA - The Professional Association for Design

American Society for Nutrition

Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA)

National Association for Museum Exhibition

National Association of Personal Financial Advisors



International Textile and Apparel Association

The Society for Human Ecology



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