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Geology/Geochemistry or Hydrology?


Which one should I go for ? I can't decide for myself because I enjoy Hydrology as much as I do Geochemistry. I plan on pursuing either one of the two so I thought the job outlook (at undergraduate and graduate levels) for both of these can help me decide. I was hoping you could advise me on what to do. I live in California, if that helps in anyway.

The outlook for either should be very good.  I would suspect that, at least to some extent, your choice depends on where you would like to live.  Although hydrologic work exist in the whole of the US, and to a lessor extent outside of the US,there is probably more demand west of the Rocky Mts. If you want to continue to live in California or in the inter-mountain west I would think hydrology would be your choice.  

On the other hand if you want to work all over the world geochemistry should probably be your choice.  There is of course geochemical work in the US mostly again west of the Rockies but because of mining constraints in the US there is and will continue to be a lot more opportunity outside of the US.

There is a lot of luck involved in getting a good job.

Good Luck,


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Joe Norris


I am an economic geologist. An economic geologist does mineral evaluations and appraisals of mineral or mining properties. I can tell you if your deposit has value - remember that a mineral deposit, no matter how good, only has value when mined. Any value assigned to a mineral deposit, in the ground, is only the speculative value that deposit.


I have been a economic geologist for most of my 35 year career. Although I have done work in perhaps 45 states and numerious countries much of my work has been in Appalachian coal, intermountain west gold and silver, and Arizona uranium.

Past President of the Virginia Section of the American Institute of Professional Geologists and a certified geologist in twelve states.

BS Degree from Eastern Kentucky University. Work on MS Degree @ Eastern Kentucky University, Colorad School of Mines & Marshall University Numerious short courses on the value of mineral deposits and how to value same. Also several short courses dealing with the different types of geologic processes; sedimentary, igneous, metamorphic along with the mineral associated with each.

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