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 Department of Earth Science  Career Opportunities in Earth Science
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Professional geoscientists are found in many fields, some of which are relatively new to the discipline. In Ghana, the mineral industry hires nearly one-third of all geoscientists. Products of the Department are currently leading mineral resources exploration projects in more than 15 African countries. Water companies and related agencies employ/contract geoscientists for groundwater development. With the recent discoveries of oil and the increase in the intensity for the search for oil and gas along the shores of Ghana, it is expected that the many oil companies will contract or employ many geoscientists.

The search for economic mineral deposits must continue as Ghana continues to develop. Mining companies actively employ geoscientists for known ore body reserve evaluations and for the exploration for new deposits. Geoscientists are also employed by railroads, sand and gravel companies, chemical companies, cement and ceramics industries, by construction firms, and by geotechnical and engineering companies.

The common perception of a geoscientists is someone who hunts for oil, groundwater or gold. While petroleum and mining geologists are the highest paid and most recognized field within geology, they are outweighed by the many geoscientists employed in business, industry, educational and research institutions across the country and internationally. Many geoscientists work with governmental agencies to conduct research in earth sciences or to implement and manage environmental regulations and public policy.

State institutions are another major employer; examples include the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), Ghana Geological Survey Department, Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA), Minerals Commission, and Water Commission. Products of the Department make up more than 80% of core geology staff of many of these institutions.

There are many geological and environmental consulting firms in Ghana; many of these are small operations that employ less than 20 people, and almost all of them employ multiple geoscientists. Environmental consultant firms often assist in construction planning and site development, locating water resources, directing environmental clean-ups, and performing environmental risk
management and assessment. In addition, multi-national agencies such as World Vision International also employ geoscientists for groundwater exploration and development.

Teaching and research are also active pursuits of geoscientists. Advanced degrees (MPhil and PhD) are usually required. The Department’s products are playing leading roles in teaching and research in universities and other research institutions such as the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research.

The private business section also includes many geoscientists who serve as consultants to many and varied clients. According to recent analyses of the available job markets by private and governmental agencies the field of geoscience is one of the top professions for employment and is predicted to remain so for some time. Pay scales are above average. The need for basic energy supplies and raw materials for mineral based industries will continue to increase and thus the need for geoscientists will remain high.

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