9 programs to get you a green job in Canada

Nearly a decade ago, green jobs like energy management did not exist. However, with many countries such as Canada and UK having declared a national climate emergency, sustainability is becoming increasingly top of mind for industry, government, consumers, and more. New green jobs are emerging as there is now an immediate and urgent need for skilled labors across industries to tackle this problem of climate change.

As a leader in sustainability research and education through partnerships with industry, BCIT is providing the skills and knowledge needed to fill the spectrum of green jobs that are emerging across industries. Whether it’s a career in the field of business, health sciences, or natural resources, green jobs are in every corner of the job market and here are several programs to help you land a green job.

SEE MORE: BCIT to host the 2019 Ecocity World Summit in Vancouver

1. Ecological Restoration

Ecological Restoration at BCIT
Students in the BCIT Ecological Restoration program will develop skills necessary to rejuvenate and protect natural systems all over the world.

Ecosystems are complex. You can’t just focus on the trees when the whole forest is interconnected, from the soil and plants to the water and wildlife. That’s why the world needs more multidisciplinary experts to help protect the environment.

It’s also why BCIT has created a degree track in this field, which is the first of its kind in Canada. Students can earn credentials in the Fish, Wildlife and Recreation or Forest and Natural Areas Management programs, and expand their education to receive both a diploma and a Bachelor’s Degree in Ecological Restoration in just four years. With this, you’ll have the knowledge and skills necessary to rejuvenate and protect natural systems all over the world.

2. Sustainable Energy Management

BCIT-Sustainable Energy ManagementStudents in the Sustainable Energy Management program acquire skills and knowledge to work in many governmental energy or energy-related agencies.

The world’s growing energy consumption and dependency on fossil fuels are driving climate change, and finding alternatives is essential. It’s also a lucrative area of employment, particularly with Vancouver’s sustainability leadership in green buildings and energy management.

BCIT School of Construction and the Environment’s advanced certificate in Sustainable Energy Management equips students for this evolving field. The program consists of nine online courses, making it a top choice for students and professionals alike, and is presented in partnership with BC Hydro and FortisBC with support from Natural Resources Canada.

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3. Environmental Engineering

BCIT-Environmental Engineering
Graduates of the Environmental Engineering program are prepared to function as a member of a multi-disciplinary team that addresses the environmental challenges faced by the industry

Engineers are society’s how-to people, and an engineering degree equips you to solve a range of problems. However, with emerging opportunities relating to renewable energy and resources, managing and mitigating waste, and ensuring the quality of our land, water, and air, it’s a good idea to hone your skills and specialize in an area that matters.

This is the goal of the Environmental Engineering program at BCIT. With expertise in building science and high performance building construction, the School of Construction and the Environment gives you the chance to take a mix of management, communication, applied environmental engineering, and general education courses along with your foundational studies. The final capstone project lets you focus on the issues and industries that interest you most, so that you graduate from the program well-rounded, workforce-ready, and be a part of the next generation of ecocity builders and sustainability leaders. 

4. Forest and Natural Areas Management

BCIT-Forest and Natural Areas ManagementThe Forest and Natural Areas Management program at BCIT provides students with the knowledge they need to keep our ecosystems pristine.

We need to preserve natural spaces—not only for protection from heat waves and floods, but also for the physical and psychological benefits they bring. However, urbanization is putting increasing pressure on environmental systems.

The two-year diploma program in Forest and Natural Areas Management at BCIT provides students with the knowledge they need to keep our ecosystems pristine. From arboriculture and silviculture to forest engineering and inventory, we depend on nature’s resources, and we need skilled stewards to help us use them wisely.

5. Chemical and Environmental Technology

BCIT Chemical and Environmental Technology
Emerging green enterprises are also eager to recruit students with skills in chemical and environmental technology.

There are many ways organizations can create a more sustainable future—including how they test and analyze substances, reduce runoff, recycle materials, and conduct quality assurance.

The two-year Chemical and Environmental Technology diploma program prepares students with the hands-on experience and research skills they need to help companies in every industry make more informed, environmentally responsible decisions. Emerging green enterprises are also eager to recruit, so there are lots of opportunities for graduates at pharmaceutical companies, engineering firms, recycling plants and more.

6. Environmental Health

BCIT Environmental Health
Graduates from the BCIT Environmental Health program often work in roles that support the safety of the community.

A healthy environment supports healthy people—the two are interrelated. That’s why it’s so important to have health inspectors who can help to ensure the safety of the community, keeping pests, pollution, and pathogens in check.

The BCIT Environmental Health program is built for this. The two-year Bachelor of Technology program not only combines theory and practice through small classes and field trips, but it culminates in a three-month practicum that often takes students outside the city for a work-integrated learning experience.

7. Sustainable Business Leadership

BCIT Sustainable Business Leadership
The BCIT Sustainable Business Leadership program is for those who are passionate about environmental issues and sustainable business practices.

People shouldn’t have to choose between a healthy economy and healthy ecology. That’s why we’re seeing a rise in corporate social responsibility and ethical enterprise, with businesses investing in both community and environmental initiatives. Companies are looking to help solve the world’s problems and mitigate their own footprints—and you can help.

With training in classroom and workplace settings, and a business consultantship for your capstone project, the advanced certificate in Sustainable Business Leadership is the only program of its kind in the province. It can be completed in as little as nine months, and if you choose to pursue a Bachelor of Business Administration at BCIT, it can count towards your degree credits.

8. Sustainable Event Management

BCIT-Sustainable Event Management
The BCIT Sustainable Event Management program prepares for a career in a fast-paced industry.

Whether it’s a wedding, an open-air concert, or an experiential marketing campaign, events happen every day. But they also tend to generate a lot of needless waste, so there’s a massive need to greenify them.

This is where Sustainable Event Management enters the picture. The certificate program readies you for every aspect of the event production process, with a special emphasis on making them as ethical and sustainable as possible. This leads to many career opportunities, as well as options to take your training to the next level as a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP).

9. Computer Systems Technology

BCIT-Computer Systems Technology programThe two-year Computer Systems Technology diploma at BCIT allows students to build apps to support green initiatives of the future. 

There’s a new trend in urban planning: smart cities. Proponents envision a future where efficient, cutting-edge technologies connect sustainable, environmentally-friendly communities. All of that has to be underpinned with software development and computer science.

That’s why the two-year Computer Systems Technology diploma at BCIT gives you a chance to build apps that will support the green initiatives of the future. Of course, the ability to develop software is in high-demand in all industries, giving graduates ample choice of where to work.

Sustainability is no longer just a lifestyle or trend: it’s critical to our success going forward. Thankfully, this has given rise to exciting new prospects that allow you to make a living while ensuring a healthy, productive environment for future generations. Reach out to our advisors to talk about how BCIT can help you achieve your goals.

SEE MORE: How BCIT Rivers Institute is protecting and restoring BC waterways, lakes, and wetlands


This story is part of the monthly Countdown to Ecocity 2019 series, which highlights BCIT’s leadership in the face of today’s complex environment challenges. This initiative supports the Ecocity Standard for a Healthy and Equitable Economy, which considers how to promote and cultivate economic activities that reduce harm, benefit the environment, and bring local, equitable employment opportunities for all.

Learn more about BCIT’s role as host of the Ecocity World Summit in 2019.

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