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Become A Senior Hydrogeologist

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Working As A Senior Hydrogeologist

  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Deal with People

  • $70,221

    Average Salary

What Does A Senior Hydrogeologist Do At Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

* Key responsibilities will be to define new and distinctive opportunities, develop compelling proposals, and establish internal and external collaborations that will grow programs, strengthen capabilities, expand business areas, and meet long-term strategic goals of the organization.
* Specifically, the successful candidate will:
* Identify, develop, and demonstrate systems-based approaches for environmental characterization, monitoring, and remediation in the subsurface.
* Provide recognized technical leadership via national and/or international authority and promote collaboration with key institutions, organizations, and partners.
* Advance state-of-the-art concepts, approaches, and technologies through experience and thought leadership around intractable environmental problems.
* Regularly publish key scientific findings in high-impact peer-reviewed journals and at major conferences.
* Review the work of others across the Laboratory.
* Organize and chair sessions at conferences and participate in professional society meetings at the regional and national level.
* Serve on external review committees and influence scientific or engineering standards and procedures.
* Mentor and train multiple scientific staff at all levels in business development and technical leadership.
* Comply with and influence PNNL’s policies regarding environmental safety and health and protection of business-sensitive material.
* Minimum Qualifications
* BS/BA with 9 years of experience; MS/MA with 7 years of experience, or PhD with 5 years of experience.
* Preferred Qualifications
* Preferred education is a PhD in hydrogeology, environmental engineering, or related field with 7 years of experience, or MS in hydrogeology, environmental engineering, or related field with 10 years of experience.
* Recognized and sustained experience leading research and developing business, particularly with the Department of Energy, Department of Defense, and Department of Interior.
* Familiarity with environmental cleanup associated with nuclear waste disposal, and the petroleum and mining industries highly desirable.
* Demonstrated record of interdisciplinary research and collaboration with sponsors, other organizations, and scientists in the areas of geologic characterization, hydrologic testing, and environmental engineering in various hydrogeologic regimes.
* Extensive knowledge in both laboratory and field applications in environmental remediation, particularly technology demonstrations.
* Outstanding written and verbal communication skills with experience in technical writing, presenting, and marketing/sales.
* Equal Employment Opportunity
* PNNL is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer that is committed to hiring a diverse, talented workforce.
* EOE Disability/Vet/M/F/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity.
* Staff at PNNL must be able to demonstrate the legal right to work in the United States.
* Other Information

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How To Become A Senior Hydrogeologist

Environmental engineers must have a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering or a related field, such as civil, chemical, or general engineering. Employers also value practical experience. Therefore, cooperative engineering programs, in which college credit is awarded for structured job experience, are valuable as well.


Entry-level environmental engineering jobs require a bachelor’s degree. Programs include classroom, laboratory, and field studies. Some colleges and universities offer cooperative programs in which students gain practical experience while completing their education.

At some colleges and universities, a student can enroll in a 5-year program that leads to both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. A graduate degree allows an engineer to work as an instructor at some colleges and universities or to do research and development, and some employers prefer candidates to have a master’s degree.

Students interested in becoming an environmental engineer should take high school courses in chemistry, biology, physics, and math, including algebra, trigonometry, and calculus.

Many engineering programs are accredited by ABET. Some employers prefer to hire candidates who have graduated from an accredited program. A degree from an ABET-accredited program is usually necessary for a person to become a licensed professional engineer.

Important Qualities

Imagination. Environmental engineers sometimes have to design systems that will be part of larger ones. They must be able to foresee how the proposed designs will interact with other components of the larger system, including the workers, machinery, and equipment, as well as with the environment.

Interpersonal skills. Environmental engineers must be able to work with others toward a common goal. They usually work with engineers and scientists who design other systems and with the technicians and mechanics who put the designs into practice.

Problem-solving skills. When designing facilities and processes, environmental engineers strive to solve several issues at once, from workers’ safety to environmental protection. They must be able to identify and anticipate problems in order to prevent losses for their employers, safeguard workers’ health, and mitigate environmental damage.

Reading skills. Environmental engineers often work with businesspeople, lawyers, and other professionals outside their field. They frequently are required to read and understand documents with topics outside their scope of training.

Writing skills. Environmental engineers must be able to write clearly so that others without their specific training can understand their plans, proposals, specifications, findings, and other documents.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Licensure is not required for entry-level positions as an environmental engineer. A Professional Engineering (PE) license, which allows for higher levels of leadership and independence, can be acquired later in one’s career. Licensed engineers are called professional engineers (PEs). A PE can oversee the work of other engineers, sign off on projects, and provide services directly to the public. State licensure generally requires

  • A degree from an ABET-accredited engineering program
  • A passing score on the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam
  • Relevant work experience, typically at least 4 years
  • A passing score on the Professional Engineering (PE) exam

The initial FE exam can be taken after one earns a bachelor’s degree. Engineers who pass this exam are commonly called engineers in training (EITs) or engineer interns (EIs). After meeting work experience requirements, EITs and EIs can take the second exam, called the Principles and Practice of Engineering.

Several states require continuing education in order for engineers to keep their licenses. Most states recognize licensure from other states if the licensing state’s requirements meet or exceed their own requirements.

After licensing, environmental engineers can earn board certification from the American Academy of Environmental Engineers and Scientists. This certification shows that an environmental engineer has expertise in one or more areas of specialization.


As beginning engineers gain knowledge and experience, they move on to more difficult projects and they have greater independence to develop designs, solve problems, and make decisions. Eventually, environmental engineers may advance to become technical specialists or to supervise a team of engineers and technicians.

Some may even become engineering managers or move into executive positions, such as program managers. However, before assuming a managerial position, an engineer most often works under the supervision of a more experienced engineer. For more information, see the profile on architectural and engineering managers.

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Senior Hydrogeologist jobs

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Senior Hydrogeologist Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • Greek

  • Portuguese

  • Lithuanian

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Senior Hydrogeologist

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Senior Hydrogeologist Education

Senior Hydrogeologist

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Top Skills for A Senior Hydrogeologist


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Top Senior Hydrogeologist Skills

  1. Groundwater Contamination
  2. Site Investigations
  3. Project Hydrogeologist
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Consulted with industry and government regarding soil and groundwater contamination issues primarily in the state of Florida.
  • Trained county managers on environmental compliance.
  • Prepared proposals, work plans, project reports, developed budgets, performed contaminant plume characterization, and provided project management.
  • Characterized RCRA hazardous wastes and coordinated their disposal.
  • Project Manager/Senior Hydrogeologist for a CERCLA hazardous waste disposal site in Princeton, New Jersey.

Top Senior Hydrogeologist Employers

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