Hydrologist Career

Science and Research

 

Hydrologist

Career Area: Science and Research

Occupation Group: Environmental and Climate Science

Salary

Percentile wages tell how much a certain percentage of an overall population in a geographic area or within a given industry or field makes. The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall.

An example would be the 25th percentile, 25 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 75 percent earn more than the estimated wage value. At the 75th percentile, 75 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 25 percent earn more than the estimated wage value.

A typical Hydrologist earns the following wages (national and state):

State

The average salary in North Carolina for those pursuing this career is $65,608

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

National

The average salary in the United States for those pursuing this career is $69,912

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

What Does a Professional in this Career Do?

Studies water, including underground water and water from ground sources like lakes and streams, and researches various aspects of the water cycle. Collects data used to plan conservation efforts and manage water supply. May advise on groundwater contamination risks or planning for flood management.

Employment Trends

The job demand and job growth statistics shown here were derived from job posts over the past year. Expected job growth projections are extrapolated from year-over-year job post listing history.

Job demand and job growth is expected at the following rates:

LocationGrowth
North Carolina31+3.2%
Nationwide1287+10.4%

Skills

A professional in this position typically utilizes the following skills in the course of everyday work in this exciting and challenging field:

Baseline Skills

The following are baseline skills every Hydrologist is expected to have in order to experience success in this field:

  • Communication Skills: The ability to convey information to another effectively and efficiently.
  • Planning: Working experience with the process of thinking about and organizing the activities required to achieve desired goals.
  • Physical Abilities: Physical Abilities, which refers to the ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with the body, arms, and/or legs. These abilities often require strength, endurance, flexibility, balance and coordination.
  • Research: Experience performing creative and systematic work to understand a product, market, or customer, either before building a new solution, or to troubleshoot an existing issue
  • Writing: Experience expressing business messages effectively in written form. This may include planning drafting and revising as necessary.

Specialized Skills

These skills are specific to working in this career:

  • Hydrology: Hydrology is the scientific study of the movement, distribution, and quality of water on Earth and other planets, including the water cycle, water resources and environmental watershed sustainability.
  • Hydrogeology: Hydrogeology (hydro- meaning water, and -geology meaning the study of the Earth) is the area of geology that deals with the distribution and movement of groundwater in the soil and rocks of the Earth's crust (commonly in aquifers).
  • Biology: Biology is the natural science that involves the study of life and living organisms, including their physical and chemical structure, function, development and evolution.
  • Chemistry: Chemistry is a branch of physical science that studies the composition, structure, properties and change of matter.
  • Natural Sciences: Natural science is a branch of science concerned with the description, prediction, and understanding of natural phenomena, based on observational and empirical evidence.

Distinguishing Skills

Any Hydrologist that possesses the following skills will stand out against the competition:

  • Soil Conservation: Soil conservation is the preventing of soil loss from erosion or reduced fertility caused by over usage, acidification, salinization or other chemical soil contamination.
  • Site Investigations: A complete examination, investigation, and testing of surface and subsurface soil and conditions. The report resulting from the investigation is used in design of the structure.
  • Watershed Management: A watershed is an area where water running off the land drains into a specific body of water, and a watershed manager makes sure that the water in our respective communities is free from contaminants and safe to drink and use.
  • Current Meters: A current meter is oceanographic device for flow measurement by mechanical (rotor current meter), tilt (Tilt Current Meter), acoustical (ADCP) or electrical means.
  • Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA): Working experience of Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), which provides a Federal Superfund to clean up uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous-waste sites as well as accidents, spills, and other emergency releases of pollutants and contaminants into the environment.

Education

This career typically requires the following level of education. The numbers presented in the pie charts below were derived from actual job posts over the past year. Not all job postings list education requirements.

.
Education Level%
Bachelor's Degree100%
Master's Degree0%
Doctoral Degree0%

Experience

This position typically requires the following level of experience. The numbers presented in the pie charts below were derived from actual job posts over the past year. Not all job postings list experience requirements.

Experience Required%
0 to 2 years41%
3 to 5 years35%
6 to 8 years8%

Many of the programs offered through NC State are designed for working professionals who need additional credentials to enhance existing work experience.

Students who do not have the expected level of experience may wish to look into internship and employment opportunities.

Common Job Titles

It is possible to find work in this field in positions commonly listed as the following job titles:

  • Hydrologist
  • Hydrogeologist
  • Hydrologist, Gs
  • Senior Hydrogeologist
  • Principal Hydrogeologist

Similar Occupations

If you are interested in exploring similar occupations, you may want to research the following job titles:

Not sure where to start?

Get personalized program recommendations with Career Insight.

Go to Career Insight