Careers in Sustainability

Careers in Sustainability

Regardless of your major or intended career path, your job can be a sustainability job! The need for sustainability-minded workers will only increase as our planet and climate continue to change. 

Sustainability is a diverse field that deals with environmental, social, and economic challenges to build a more resilient and equitable future. You can contribute to positive change by helping organizations, communities, and governments adopt more sustainable practices.  

As the demand for sustainable practices continues to grow, so does the variety of career opportunities within the sustainability field! 

There are numerous resources: Your professors, advisors, the Office of Sustainability, and the Career Development Center are great places to start. You may also want to try shadowing a professional or interning with an organization you are interested in to get a glimpse into the type of work they do. 

Many of the green jobs of the future don’t yet exist or are just emerging! It is an exciting time to be starting your career.  

Resources for researching sustainability careers: 

Career maps you can use as a starting point: 


Check out the All We Can Save Project's Climate Wayfinding diagram below to find the best way to leverage your skills and interests to be part of the climate action movement!

Venndiagram_Climate Action

Getting specialized training on a variety of sustainability-related skills can help make your resume standout among the competition! Below are some of the types of trainings and certifications you can pursue. 

Check out company websites to see if they talk about sustainability. Many companies share what they care about, what they are doing now, and what they plan to do in the future. 

Questions to consider: 

  • Where does the sustainability team sit within the organization? 

  • Is it a small, independent team or are sustainable business practices important across departments? 

  • If the company doesn’t have a team, what ESG-related goals are they pursuing? 

Look for certifications, like badges or awards, on their websites and published reports. These certifications can show if a company is committed to responsible environmental, social, and governance (ESG) practices. Just remember, each certification focuses on different things, so make sure it matches what you care about. 


General Information about Sustainability Certifications 

Social & Environmental Sustainability Certifications 

  • B-Corp: A company that meets strict requirements for verifiable performance, transparency, and accountability. They must pledge to be legally accountable to all stakeholders, show excellent social and environmental performance, and openly report it. 

  • Fair Trade: Guarantees that by internationally established standards, farmers and laborers in developing nations are paid fairly and have respectable working conditions. 

  • Women Owned: Validates that a business is at least 51% owned, controlled, operated, and managed by women. 

  • Minority Business Enterprise: Required to be 51% owned, operated, capitalized, and controlled by minority group members. 

  • Disadvantaged Business Enterprise: Must be 51% owned, capitalized, controlled, and operated by individual(s) who are socially and economically disadvantaged.  

  • 1% for the Planet: Companies commit a minimum of 1% of their annual revenue to vetted environmental nonprofits. 

  • ROC: Is a collection of practices that focuses on regenerating soil health and the full farm ecosystem. 

Job Boards and Career Resources 

Searching for a job can be time consuming! Below are a list of job boards specifically catered to positions in sustainability-related fields.  

  • Good Food Jobs 

  • Green America 

  • Green Jobs Board 

  • Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) 

  • Career Development Center- There are many great resources at the Career Development Center including resume and cover letter review, interview practice, job search help, and guides for what you can do with your major. 

  • Beach Sustainability Newsletter 

  • Don’t forget that you can search standard job websites like LinkedIn, Indeed, using keywords such as “sustainability”, “green”, “climate action,” “environmental,” or “ESG.” 


Searching for a job can be time consuming! Below are a list of job boards specifically catered to positions in sustainability-related fields.  

Does Sustainability Really Relate to My Major?

Sustainability is not limited to specific majors or disciplines. There are countless ways to contribute to sustainability, whether you are studying business, engineering, or even the arts. The key is to approach your chosen field with a mindset of environmental and social responsibility, finding innovative ways to make a positive impact.

Below are just a few examples of ways that sustainability could apply to disciplines within each college. 

Infuse sustainability into artistic expression by incorporating eco-friendly materials and promoting environmental themes, fostering a culture of environmental responsibility within the artistic community. 


  • Filmmakers: Learn about ways to make production more sustainable through programs like the Green Film School Alliance
  • Fine Artists: Use repurposed, non-toxic, and eco-friendly materials to make your art and consider sustainability related themes as subject matter
  • Interior Designers: Source eco-friendly materials and furnishes and find create ways to incorporate natural elements and light into your designs

 Embed sustainable business practices into the company, encouraging corporate social responsibility and eco-friendly policies.


  • Entrepreneurs: Take a lead role in creating a company and/or products that have a positive impact on the environment and communities
  • Marketing Specialists: Use marketing to promote sustainable behaviors and norms among consumers
  • Supply Chain Managers: Consider and seek out innovative ways to minimize the impacts of goods production and movement

Lead by integrating environmental education and climate literacy into your curriculum and collaborate to promote sustainability initiatives within the broader education community.


  • Teachers: Develop lesson plans that teach students about sustainable behaviors they can do at home with their families
  • Counselors: Support students who are experiencing climate anxiety or the impacts of environmental injustices in their own communities

Prioritize sustainability in engineering projects and emphasize eco-friendly technologies while minimizing environmental impact.


  • Construction Managers: Learn about green building best practices and the benefits of integrating them into building projects
  • Civil Engineers: Keep environmental and social impacts in mind when designing and constructing infrastructure projects
  • Environmental Engineers: Develop and implement solutions to address and mitigate environmental challenges

Connect human well-being with environmental health by integrating sustainability into health programs, implementing eco-friendly practices in healthcare settings, and promoting sustainable lifestyles.


  • Healthcare Professionals: Seek out opportunities to adopt sustainable practices in a healthcare setting or utilize nature to promote patient wellbeing
  • Hospitality and Tourism Managers: Promote sustainable practices within hotels and resorts, including ecotourism opportunities
  • Policymakers: Advocate for public policies that protect the environment and public health
  • Fashion Designers: Source sustainable textiles and promote ethical clothing manufacturing practices 


Incorporate sustainability by integrating environmental themes such as advocating for eco-friendly practices through research and writing and engaging in environmental awareness and positive change.


  • Journalists: Write articles that raise awareness about environmental issues and social injustices
  • Communications Specialists: Help conscious companies craft a communications strategy to tell their "sustainability story"
  • Geographers: Help urban planners create plans for sustainable community development 
  • Environmental Consultants: Advise organizations on environmental issues and help develop plans for mitigating negative impacts

 Advance scientific solutions for sustainability by emphasizing eco-friendly research and integrating ecologically conscious principles.


  • Biologists: Study the impacts of changing environments and the climate on specific species and develop plans to help preserve them
  • Chemists: Explore the exciting field of Green Chemistry and be on the leading edge
  • Geologists: Research past conditions on Earth to help inform responsible decision making in the present and plans for the future

Implement sustainable practices into any of these diverse degrees. One degree offered at CSULB in CPaCE is the Master of Science in Sustainability Management and Policy. Learn more.