Behavior, Education, and Communication career services information

“I believe that we cannot create truly sustainable change without addressing the human component of sustainability. SNRE sets itself apart by offering a program that looks specifically at Behavior, Education, and Communication, and I’ve found my coursework to be both interesting and valuable.” -Ryan Whisnant, SNRE BEC Alum

"In addition to all the good knowledge and experience students have by virtue of graduating from SNRE, BEC students bring a perspective of the people side of the issues -- at the individual as well as group levels.  Affecting change requires an understanding of how people function -- what do they need to know, why are so many efforts to provide them with the information ineffective, how do you incorporate their perspective in trying to affect change..." -Rachel Kaplan, SNRE Faculty

Favorite BEC Job Search Websites What Exactly is the Study of Behavior, Education and Communication (BEC)?
Employers of SNRE Graduates and Interns Why Should Employers Hire BEC Students?
Job Titles and Employment Sector of SNRE Alumni Examples of BEC Coursework
Other Employers of Interest Conferences of Interest
BEC Focused Master's Projects
Professional Organizations to Join
Interested in BEC Focused Internships? Need Help Finding a Job?
eRecruiter BEC Highlights Need Help Finding an Internship?

Favorite BEC Job Search Websites

Environmental Career Opportunities (Please go to eRecruiter to obtain the password for the job subscription)
Environmental Educators Link 
Environmental Education Resources - Job Board
Environmental Jobs
eRecruiter 
govtjobs.com
Green Careers Journal (Please go to eRecruiter to obtain the password for the job subscription)
North American Association for Environmental Education Jobs Posts
Schmeeckle Reserve
SNRE Job Posting Websites
State of Michigan Vacancy Posting Page
USA JOBS

Employers of SNRE Graduates and Interns*

Check out the SNRE Group on LinkedIn to network with SNRE students & alumni who have professional experience in the field. 

Accenture
Alliance for the Great Lakes
Ann Arbor YMCA 
ANN INC.
Ashoka
Centre for Environment Education, India
Centro de Polí­ticas Públicas UC
Chesapeake Bay Trust
Children's Day School
Chinese Association of Zoological Gardens
City of Omaha, NE
City of Seattle, WA
Cuyahoga Valley National Park Association
Deep Portage Conservation Reserve
De Montfort University
Detroit Conference, United Methodist Church
Elmhurst Park District
Environmental Concern Inc.
Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)
Environmental Defense Fund's Climate Corps Program   
Fair Food Network
FoodWiki, LLC  
Ford Motor Company
FrontRange Earth Force
Gathering Waters Conservancy 
Global Alliance of Artists
Gorman Heritage Farm
Great Lakes Observing System
Greenbelt Alliance 
Green Mountain College
GreenOrder
Growing Hope
Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy
KPMG Global Center for Sustainability and Climate Change 
Lowcountry Local First
Massachusetts Riverways Program 
Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum
McKinsey
Michigan Department of Agriculture
Michigan Groundwater Stewardship Program 
Michigan Nature Association
Michigan State University
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
National Wildlife Federation
Nature Kenya - The East Africa Natural History Society
Near East Foundation
NetApp
One Block Off the Grid (1BOG)
Orange County Public School 
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
Piedmont Environmental Council
Public Architecture
Siemens
SE Michigan Regional Energy Office
South Platte River Environmental Education (SPREE)
Stokes Nature Center
Strategic Energy Innovations 
SunGard
SunGard (internship through the EDF Climate Corps Fellowship)
Tahoe-Baikal Institute
Tahoma School District
TerraCycle
Tetra Tech, Inc 
The Boeing Company
The Keystone Center
The Nature Conservancy
The Parks and People Foundation
The World Women Want, LLC
Thornapple Grand Conservation District
Tilian Farm Development Center
University of California Santa Cruz, Office of Sustainability
University of Michigan, Program in the Environment
University of Montana
Upstate Forever
Urban Ecology Institute 
US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service
US Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory
US Department of Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service
US Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Business Plan Initiative 
US Environmental Protection Agency
US Office of Management and Budget 
Valles Caldera Trust
Walt Disney Company, Animal Kingdom
Waste Ventures
Western Michigan University, Science and Mathematics Program
White Mountain School
Wildlife Conservation Society
Wildlife Habitat Council, Great Lakes Regional Office
Worldwatch Institute
WRD Environmental
Youngstown State University 

Job Titles and Employment Sector of SNRE Alumni*

Please note that some positions may require a PhD.

Non-Profit   

Administrative Coordinator
Campus Field Coordinator (global warming solutions outreach)  
CEO
Communications Assistant
Director of Admission & Communication
Director, Great Lakes Regional Office
Director, Outdoor & Retreat Ministries
Documentation Specialist
Environmental Education Instructor
Environmental Educator   
Executive Director    
Lead Naturalist
Outreach and Policy Coordinator  
Outreach Specialist 
Pacific West Program Manager
President
Project Officer
Program Associate
Program Coordinator   
Program Networker 
Program Manager 
Regional Stewardship Organizer
Senior Associate
Teacher
Watershed Project Director
Wetland Educator
Youth Volunteer Corps Program Coordinator 

Academic

Adjunct Professor
Assistant Director of a Center
Assistant Professor of Natural Resource Management and Environmental Studies
Chair, Sustainability Studies
Graduate Research Assistant
Lecturer
Recycling Coordinator
Research Assistant Professor
Senior Research Fellow
Sustainability Internship Coordinator

Government

AmeriCorps Groundwater Educator
Assistant Program Coordinator
Executive Director
Interpretive Assistant
Presidential Management Fellow
Program Administrator
Program Coordinator
Natural Resource Specialist
Science Teacher

Private (Consulting and Industry)

Chief Technology Officer
Consultant
Corporate Social Responsibility Specialist
Director of Sustainability
Employee Environmental Engagement Leader
Founder & CEO 
Public Outreach Specialist

Click here for some sample BEC Career Opportunities

Other Employers of Interest

These are just a handful that have been suggested by faculty, students, or are registered employers on eRecruiter...many more are out there! Check out eRecruiter for a complete listing of Behavior, Education and Communication employers that are registered with SNRE.

Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF)
Colorado Youth Corps Association 
Disney's Animal Kingdom
Earthwatch Institute Education Fellowship Program (only for K-12 teachers)
Environmental Resources Center (ERC)   
Hidden Villa Environmental Education Program (HVEEP)
Kids For The Bay
Land's Sake
Michigan Alliance for Environmental & Outdoor Education
Montclair State University's School of Conservation 
National Environmental Education Foundation
New Hampshire Project Learning Tree
Place-Based Education Evaluation Collaborative
Project WILD
Sustain Dane
The Detroit Science Center 
The Environmental Magazine
United Nations Environment Program
Wildlife Clubs of Kenya
Zoo Atlanta's Conservation Education Initiative in China
This database consists of organizations in the Environmental Education field in Asian countries

 BEC Focused Master’s Projects

“People, Parks and Partnerships”
“This Masters project was inspired by research showing the benefits of nature on human behavior. Access to natural settings is difficult for inner-city residents and funding is limited, thus, the goal of this project was to provide specific, practical
recommendations for partnership opportunities between community-based organizations and the National Park Service to affordably provide access for urban residents to nearby wilderness areas.”
-Zach Fried, SNRE BEC Alumni

Current BEC Students and Master’s Projects

Interested in BEC Focused Internships? 

Go to the SNRE Internship Website to view BEC student internship reports.

eRecruiter BEC Highlights

  • Search for BEC related jobs/internships
  • Find career events on campus
  • Search for Employers who hire BEC students
  • Apply for BEC jobs/internship on-line
  • View our Document Library, full of helpful career related resources

What Exactly is the Study of Behavior, Education and Communication (BEC)?

The Behavior, Education and Communication field of study serves as a focal point for the study of the socio-behavioral aspects of natural resource and environmental issues. It views the science of behavior through an environmental prism and examines the role of education and communication in advancing a sustainable society for the individuals involved.  

Why Should Employers Hire BEC Students?

Skills that BEC students can offer employers:  Negotiation, dispute resolution, knowledge of human behavior and psychology in relation to the environment, ability to plan and execute educational programming, outreach and communication of environmental issues, and an ability to create buy-in for environmental policies and programs.

Some students have the opportunity to work in the Environmental Psychology Lab located on the University of Michigan Campus in the Dana Building.  

Examples of BEC Coursework:

The curriculum builds broad comprehension of the causes, dynamics and consequences of decisions and actions that impact natural resource and environmental values and concerns. Students will study human behavior in the context of the environment, both present and evolutionary, and learn to design educational, communication and motivational techniques for promoting environmental sustainability. 

Courses

Natural Resources Conflict Management
This course builds an understanding of the causes, dynamics and consequences of natural resource and environmental conflicts as well as the range of possible procedural interventions that can be used to manage these conflicts.
Negotiation Skills in Environmental Dispute Resolution
This course is a module that develops skills in bargaining and negotiation as they can be applied to the resolution of
environmental disputes. It will help a student prepare for and carry out a negotiation, become a more effective communicator, and understand the psychological dimensions inherent in negotiation processes.
Behavior & Environment
Environmental problems are people problems requiring an understanding of how people think, what they care about, and the conditions under which they behave. Human behavior makes the most sense when studied in the context of the environment. The course builds a model of human nature based upon research in the field of environmental psychology.
Psychology of Environmental Stewardship
One of the enduring challenges of crafting a sustainable society is to create one in which people will want to live. The issue here is how to reframe and then promote such a future so that people not only willingly accept it but actually seek it out.  To meet this challenge behavior change tools and strategies are developed - there is emphasis on informational and motivational means of changing behavior.
Public Opinion and the Environment
This research seminar will examine trends in public opinion on the environment, influences on people’s concerns about the environment, and how such concerns affect personal behaviors and the political process.
Advanced Environmental Education
An advanced seminar with topics that include: assumptions and pitfalls implicit in different EE approaches, the challenge of reaching multicultural and urban audiences, the expanding scope of EE, EE in the international setting.
Cognitive Function
This course provides an integrated approach to perception, thought and emotion. In it we will examine such topics as problem solving, intuition, expertise, rationality and the maintenance of mental effectiveness. We will consider both theory and
application, using the constraints provided by psychology, evolution, neurophysiology, and human-environment relationships.

Students can also reach out to other schools and departments on campus to find faculty members interested in Behavior, Education and Communication. Faculty members in Health Behavior and Health Education in the School of Public Health, Psychology, and the Taubman College of Urban and Regional Planning offer courses and conduct research in Behavior, Education and Communication.  

Conferences of Interest

Conferences are great avenues for resource sharing, presenting papers/poster, networking, and meeting possible future employers!

Behavior, Energy and Climate Change Conference
Clinton Global Initiative Annual Conference 
The Cloud Institute (see event listing - right hand side of page) 
Conference Alert (listing of upcoming environmental conferences)
Etech Germany Conferences (multiple conferences related to sustainability and the education of sustainability)
Food System Economic Partnership (FSEP) Conference (check with FSEP for future conference opportunities)
Good Jobs, Green Jobs National Conference (search the internet for workforce, labor development, or other green job conferences)
International Conference on New Horizons in Education 
Michigan Recycling Coalition Annual Conference and Trade Show
National Environmental Health Association, Annual Educational Conference and Exhibition (6.19-20.2011)
Pierce Cedar Creek Institute's Annual Renewable Energy Conference (3.19.2011)
Women in Green Forum  (8.30-31.2011)
View the SNRE Conference Website

Many of the Professional Organizations listed below hold annual conferences, visit their websites for more information.  There are also many state and local chapters that hold conferences in which you may have interest.  The benefits are that the conferences are close to home and usually are less crowded than national conferences.

Professional Organizations to Join


Air & Waste Management Association
American Psychological Association (APA)
APA Division 34 (Society for Environmental, Population and Conservation Psychology)
Association for Psychological Science (APS)
Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA)
International Association for Society and Natural Resources(IASNR) (2011 Symposium 6.4-8.2011)
Michigan Alliance for Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE) (2011 Annual Conference 10.7-9.2011)
Michigan Wetlands Association
National Association of Environmental Professionals
National Environmental Health Association (Annual Educational Conference and Exhibition 6.28-30.2012)
North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) (2011 Conference 10.12-15.2011)
Other state-associated EE organizations, depending on plans for geographical location of desired employment (e.g., in Wisconsin, The Wisconsin Association for Environmental Education
Society for Human Ecology (SHE) 
Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI)

Need a help finding a job?

Email snre.careers@umich.edu to request an appointment with a SNRE Career Services staff member.  

Lisa Yee-Litzenberg: Coordinator of Student Career Services
Room 1520 Dana Building
(734) 615-1633, yeeha@umich.edu

Marika McCann: Career Counselor and Internship Coordinator, 734-764-8088, katzma@umich.edu

Need help finding an internship?

Email snre.careers@umich.edu to request an appointment with a SNRE Career Services staff member.  

*Data taken from 2006-2011 surveys of SNRE students/alumni and from our eRecruiter system