Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / OCT. 25, 2014
version 3, draft 3

How to Become an Air Quality Specialist in the US

air quality specialist

Air quality specialists, also known as air pollution specialists, work to ensure the air we breathe is safe, odourless and free of pollutants. They do this by conducting tests on air samples from various environments and determining whether it meets the set standards. If you have an academic background in environmental science and possess excellent analytical and practical skills, you could become an effective air quality specialist.

What Do Air Quality Specialists Do?

Although the primary task of these specialists is to ensure air quality, their specific duties often vary by workplace.

In government agencies they:

  • Ensure manufacturing plants and other factories adhere to air quality regulations
  • Help agencies to develop air quality monitoring programs
  • Recommend new policies to environmental policy makers
  • Conduct research to determine the effectiveness of various air quality policies
  • Respond to air pollution complaints filed by the public.

In industrial and commercial settings (manufacturing plants and companies that provide environmental services) they:

  • Ensure emissions from the factories are properly treated and meet air quality standards
  • Conduct indoor air quality testing in offices and people’s residences
  • Interpret technical reports and air quality data to other professionals
  • Handle air quality testing equipment.

Work Environment

Regardless of workplace, air quality specialists work from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. When they are not in their offices reviewing some documents, they can be found in the field conducting air quality tests.

With fieldwork comes the possibility of facing harsh weather. As such, air quality specialists may wear boots, heavy coasts and other protective gear to stay safe and healthy.

Salary

The annual average salary for air quality specialists is:

Job Level

 

Annual Wage

Beginning air quality specialists

 

$38,000 - $59,000

Experienced air quality specialists

 

$59,000 - $77,000

Air quality managers

 

$77,000 - $91,000

Source: Payscale

Entry Requirements

To be employed as an air quality specialist, you need to earn any of the following credentials:

  • An associate degree in occupational safety and health
  • Bachelor’s degree in environmental science, environmental engineering or a closely related field.

With an associate degree, you will most likely find a job in an environmental services company and other organizations with occupational health and safety departments. A bachelor’s degree offers you the best opportunity to land a job in a government agency.

Since the job involves regular travelling, many employers also prefer specialists with a valid driver’s license.

Important Qualities

The skills and abilities that aspiring air quality specialists must have include:

  • Strong practical and analytical skills
  • Excellent problem-solving skills
  • Good communication skills to interpret technical documents
  • An awareness of occupational safety and health issues
  • An interest in preserving the environment
  • Good IT and technical skills.

Career Development

Being entry-level employees, air quality specialists have strong career advancement prospects. A combination of vast work experience, professional certifications and advanced education is all you need to get a head. As such, you should:

  • Pursue a master’s degree in occupational health and safety or environmental science
  • Obtain a relevant professional certification, such the Certified Indoor Air Quality Manager offered by the National Registry of Environmental Professionals
  • Join associations such as the Indoor Air Quality Association.

Job Opportunities

Apart from manufacturing plants and government agencies, air quality specialists can also be hired by:

  • Research centers
  • Health facilities
  • Technical consulting companies
  • Colleges and universities

With several years of experience and additional qualifications, you can become an air quality manager or occupational safety and health director. You could also establish an air quality consulting company.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of environmental scientists and specialists will grow by 15 percent from 2012 through 2022. This means qualified air quality specialists will smile all the way to their first jobs without much hassle!

 

Get our FREE eBook!
'6 Steps to Landing Your Next Job'
Career Test
Career Test
Career Test

LEAVE A REPLY

0 comments

 

RELATED ARTICLES

How to Become a Contract Specialist in the US
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / NOV 16, 2014

Each year, various government agencies collectively spend billions of dollars to acquire the goods and services they need to keep their operations running. Contract...

How to Become a Recruiting Specialist in the US
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / OCT 18, 2014

Working in the human resources department, recruiting specialists help organizations to hire qualified and competent professionals. They spend much of their time...

How to Become a Mortgage Servicing Specialist in the US
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / OCT 27, 2014

Mortgage servicing specialist work in the banking industry where they deal with clients who secure mortgage loans. They ensure clients service or repay their loans...

How to Become a Loss Prevention Specialist in the US
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / OCT 21, 2014

Loss prevention is a strategy commonly employed by retail businesses to mitigate risks posed by theft of merchandise. Loss prevention specialists are central to the...

How to Become an Air Traffic Controller
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / APR 20, 2014

Responsible for managing aircraft of all shapes and sizes through each and every aspect of their flight, it is the duty of an air traffic controller to prioritise safety...

How to Become an Air Conditioning Engineer
CAREER DEVELOPMENT / APR 16, 2014

An air conditioning engineer is one of the most important jobs that someone can have. They help to keep buildings and vehicles comfortable and they help to keep the right...

Get our FREE eBook!
'6 Steps to Landing Your Next Job'
G up arrow