Careers with a Human Ecology Degree

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

 

This multidisciplinary approach will help 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.

 

Although some careers related to this field require further education and training (Nutritionist and Lawyer among others), a major in it still 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 careers guide contains detailed occupational information on relevant career paths. 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!

 

 

 

 

List of Relevant Careers

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 - 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.

 

Below is a list of careers in our database that we feel are relevant to the field for the one of the above-noted reasons:


 

Adult Education Instructor

Art Director

Art Gallery Curator

Blogger

Career Counselor

Community Care Coordinator

Community Planner

Consumer Advocate

Costume Designer

Credit Counselor

Department Manager

Diversity Consultant

Elementary School Teacher

Entrepreneur

Ergonomist

Event Planner

Exhibit Designer

Fabric Designer

Facilitator

Fashion Buyer

Fashion Designer

Fashion Illustrator

Fashion Journalist

Fashion Merchandiser

Florist

Food Safety Auditor

Funeral Director

Furniture Designer

Game Tester

Geriatric Care Manager

Gerontologist

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 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 

 

 

What Types of Employers Hire 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 graduates of this field, 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

• Home builders

• 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 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 Within This Field

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

 

 

Average Salary Levels of Graduates

The salary you could earn with a Human Ecology degree varies based on a wide variety of factors, such as:

 

• The type, size, and budget of your employer

• Your level of education and experience

• Your level of certification (if applicable)

• The region in which you work 

• How much overtime you are able to work (if applicable)

• The method in which you are paid (such as commission, salary, self-employment)

• The amount of responsibility involved in your position

• Your level of experience (it’s worth noting that people with several years worth of experience can often earn substantially in their profession more than what’s listed below)

 

The salary you could earn as a graduate of this field is also highly dependent on the occupation you pursue. Below is an overview of the average earnings of people in a few career fields that are relevant to a degree in human ecology (many careers will require additional education and training). However, it should be noted that the salary information listed below is meant only to serve as a guideline. In many cases, workers in these areas of occupation can earn a much lower, or much higher salary, than what is listed below. 

 

 

Adult Education Instructor

Alberta: N/A

Canada: N/A

United States: $52,100 (BLS)

 

Art Director

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $77,947 (PayScale)

United States: ($92,500)

 

Art Gallery Curator

Alberta: $72,973 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $47,360 (BLS)

 

Blogger

Alberta: N/A

Canada: N/A

United States: $36,580 (indeed)

 

Career Counselor

Alberta: $59,291 (ALIS)

Canada: $44,169 (PayScale)

United States: $55,410 (BLS)

 

Community Care Coordinator

Alberta: $67,175 (ALIS)

Canada: $57,940 (PayScale)

United States: $59,970 (BLS)

 

Community Planner

Alberta: $96,293 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $71,490 (BLS)

 

Costume Designer

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $74,774 (PayScale)

United States: $50,545 (Glassdoor)

 

Credit Counselor

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $45,000 (PayScale)

United States: $49,460 (BLS)

 

Department Manager

Alberta: $37,117 (ALIS)

Canada: $46,540 (PayScale)

United States: $43,580 (BLS)

 

Diversity Consultant

Alberta: $68,758 (ALIS)

Canada: $70,578 (PayScale)

United States: $82,100 (BLS)

 

Elementary School Teacher

Alberta: $78,971 (ALIS)

Canada: $51,702 (PaySCale)

United States: $54,230 (BLS)

 

Ergonomist

Alberta: $81,207 (ALIS)

Canada: $63,982 (PayScale)

United States: $71,780 (BLS)

 

Event Planner

Alberta: $50,405 (ALIS)

Canada: $43,409 (PayScale)

United States: $48,290 (BLS)

 

Exhibit Designer

Alberta: N/A

Canada: N/A

United States: $59,590 (BLS)

 

Fabric Designer

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $39,526 (PayScale)

United States: $49,690 (BLS)

 

Facilitator

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $39,240 (PayScale)

United States: $38,400 (Glassdoor)

 

Fashion Buyer

(See “Retail Buyer”)

Fashion Designer

Alberta: N/A

 

Fashion Designer

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $50,128 (PayScale)

United States: $67,420 (BLS)

 

Fashion Merchandiser

(See “Visual Merchandiser”)

 

Florist

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $29,160 (PayScale)

United States: $26,350 (BLS)

 

Food Safety Auditor

Alberta: $80,949 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $71,780 (BLS)

 

Funeral Director

Alberta: $59,100 (ALIS)

Canada: $46,979 (PayScale)

United States: $93,090 (BLS)

 

Furniture Designer

Alberta: $69,260 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $65,970 (BLS)

 

Geriatric Care Manager

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $51,000 (PayScale)

United States: $98,350 (BLS)

 

Gerontologist

Alberta: $87,546 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $39,819 - $123,053 - depending on specialty (indeed)

 

Human Ecologist

Alberta: $61,605 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: N/A

 

Industrial Designer

Alberta: $69,264 (ALIS)

Canada: $55,531 (indeed)

United States: $65,970 (BLS)

 

Interior Decorator

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $35,460 (PayScale)

United States: N/A

 

Interior Design Consultant

(See “Interior Designer”)

 

Interior Designer

Alberta: $60,599 (ALIS)

Canada: $51,937 (Interior Designers of Canada)

United States: $51,500 (BLS)

 

Magazine Designer

Alberta: $58,099 (ALIS)

Canada: $44,000 (PayScale)

United States: $48,700 (BLS)

 

Multiculturalism Liaison Officer

Alberta: $55,910 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: N/A

 

Nutrition Consultant

Alberta: $85,056 (ALIS)

Canada: $59,263 (PayScale)

United Sates: $59,410 (BLS)

 

Package Designer

Alberta: $58,099 (ALIS)

Canada: $50,184 (PayScale)

United States: $48,700 (BLS)

 

Professional Organizer

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $45,000 (PayScale)

United States: N/A

 

Public Health Inspector

Alberta: $80,949 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $71,780 (BLS)

 

Public Relations Specialist

Alberta: $77,090 (ALIS)

Canada: $49,725 (PayScale)

United States: $59,300 (BLS)

 

Quality Control Specialist

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $55,114 (PayScale)

United States: $37,340 (BLS)

 

Recreation Therapist

Alberta: $71,060 (indeed)

Canada: $60,400 (indeed)

United States: $49,670 (BLS - mean salary)

 

Retail Buyer

Alberta: $45,891 (ALIS)

Canada: $56,066 (PayScale)

United States: $60,040 (BLS)

 

Safety Coordinator

Alberta: $80,949 (ALIS)

Canada: $53,357 (PayScale)

United States: $71,780 (BLS)

 

Sales Representative

Alberta: $62,683 (ALIS)

Canada: $61,624 (indeed)

United Sates: $60,340 (BLS)

 

Set Designer

Alberta: $62,683 (ALIS)

Canada: $61,624 (indeed)

United Sates: $60,340 (BLS)

 

Textiles Production Manager

Alberta: $94,698 (ALIS)

Canada: $83,494 (Glassdoor)

United States: $100,580 (BLS)

 

Toy Designer

Alberta: $69,264 (ALIS)

Canada: $49,193 (PayScale)

United States: $56,550 (BLS)

 

Urban Planner

Alberta: $96,293 (ALIS)

Canada: N/A

United States: $71,490 (BLS)

 

Visual Merchandiser

Alberta: N/A

Canada: $25,040 (Glassdoor)

United States: $42,729 (BLS)

 

Volunteer Coordinator

Alberta: $35,126 (ALIS)

Canada: $40,122 (PayScale)

United States: $34,940 (indeed)

 

Web Designer

Alberta: $67,808 (ALIS)

Canada: $45,899 (indeed)

United States: $67,540 (BLS)

 

Wedding Planner

Alberta: $50,405 (ALIS)

Canada: $43,409 (PayScale)

United States: $40,407 (PayScale)

 

The name in brackets next to the salary data for each region refers to the sources from which the data was obtained. Please note, that unless otherwise stated, the salary data that is sourced from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) represents median salary figures, rather than average or mean salary figures. 

 

Please Note: The figures from the sources of BLS and ALIS are representative of the larger occupational group that the occupation is part of. For example, “Nutrition Consultants” are part of the larger occupational group “Nutritionists” for the purposes of the salary information provided.

 

 

Salary Data References

ALIS: Alberta Learning and Information Service (alis.alberta.ca), sponsored by the Government of Alberta. For an overview of their salary survey methodology, please visit here.

 

PayScale: Private organization owned by PayScale Incorporated (payscale.com). For an overview of their salary survey methodology, please visit here.

 

BLS: United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov), sponsored by the federal government of the United States of America. For details regarding their salary survey methodology, please visit here.

 

Glassdoor: Glassdoor is a private organization owned by Glassdoor incorporated (glassdoor.com). For an overview of their salary survey methodology, please visit here.

 

Interior Designers of Canada: Founded in 1972, Interior Designers of Canada (IDC) is the national advocacy association for the interior design profession. For an overview of their salary survey methodology, please visit here.

 

 

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Gaining Relevant Career Experience 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 Good 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.

 

 

Relevant 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

To find out more about careers directly related to this field, 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.

 

Canada

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

International Textile and Apparel Association

The Society for Human Ecology

 

 


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