An entomology degree can prepare you for an exciting variety of careers! Check out just a few examples below, and explore the careers that some UGA entomology alumni have enjoyed after graduation.
Medicine and veterinary medicine: The entomology degree covers all recommended prerequisite courses for medical and veterinary school, and our curriculum is a great way to prepare as a physician. Many of our research labs have a strong medical entomology focus, and can help connect pre-med students to research experience that will enrich their education and make them strong candidates for competitive professional post-graduate degree programs.
Extension entomology: Help farmers and gardeners protect their crops and improve sustainability as an extension educator. This job often takes you out to the field to offer guidance to farmers on insect identification and management. Extension educators also lead educational workshops and work with researchers to translate new discoveries in pest management for farmers who need them most.
Agriculture/horticulture/nursery: An entomology degree can also provide the knowledge of crop production and pest management to manage a farm or plant nursery (particularly when paired as a double major with a horticulture degree from UGA.) Our program can prepare you to make the correct decisions to protect your crops and income from devastating pest outbreaks. It can also give you the tools you need to promote agricultural biodiversity and beneficial insects so that pest outbreaks occur less frequently.
Public health entomology: The CDC (Center for Disease Control), the NIH (National Institute of Health), and even local health departments often employ graduates with expertise in arthropod vectors of human diseases (like mosquitoes and ticks). In a medical entomology career, you might carry out sampling efforts to help epidemiologists estimate pathogen risks in your area, or extract DNA from arthropod samples to determine whether or not they are infected with human pathogens. Read about Katelyn Cavender’s exciting career in medical entomology. in our ENTO alumni profiles!
Entomology education: UGA’s entomology degree offers numerous opportunities for education and outreach with K-12 students that can help prepare you for a career as a science teacher. Our entomology major can easily be paired with a UGA’s the BSA in Agricultural Education or the BSEd degree in Science education.
Museums and botanical gardens: Entomology majors can apply their knowledge of insect ecology by curating exhibits and developing educational outreach programming for different museums and botanical gardens. Our strong service learning program connects entomology students with many opportunities to develop real-world projects in collaboration with UGA's Arthropod Display Collections, and the State Botanical Garden of Georgia. Read more about Bethany Harris' career at Callaway Gardens in our ENTO alumni profiles!
Entomology research: UGA’s strong group of world-renowned entomology researchers can prepare students for a productive career in academics. The numerous opportunities for undergraduates to work in labs and perform independent research in our department provide students with experience in experimental design, data collection, analysis, presentation, and communication of scientific results that will make them excellent candidates for graduate research programs nationwide.
Pest control industry: Some students with Entomology degrees find employment with mid- to large-sized pest control companies who have a need for technical services that are entomology based - basic ID, troubleshooting, training, pesticide product selections, etc. Other graduates find lucrative positions pesticide research and development, while others do crop consulting with pesticide companies or work with tree or lawn care companies to help homeowners and public land managers protect their ornamental landscapes. Read more about Jessie Kalina's career with Corteva Agriscience in our ENTO alumni profiles!
Entomology Careers with Government Agencies: (https://www.usajobs.gov/)
USDA APHIS (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service): Entomologists excited about identifying insects can help with early detection efforts of potentially invasive species before they spread in the US. Many APHIS staff screen insect samples collected from lumber shipping yards and ship ballast, or assist with the importation of new biological control agents to ensure their safety for native taxa.
USDA ARS (Agricultural Research Service): As the scientific research arm of the USDA, the ARS often hires entomologists to lead research to solve food security challenges associated with pest and pathogen attack of crops and livestock. The ARS also employees entomologists as support scientists and research technicians.
USDA Forest Service: Help forestry managers protect trees from insect outbreaks like the mountain pine beetle. Entomologists employed by the forest service may work in the field on our national forests to survey for potentially damaging forest pests, or help to assess damage and rehabilitate forest areas impacted by previous insect invasion.
Military: Military installations are like little cities and are spread all over the world. Of course, they have pests just like any human habitation has – cockroaches, flies, bed bugs, and such – so they require pest management professionals to control the pests in order to keep personnel and facilities safe. Military pest management professionals are certified and held to the same standards as their counterparts in commercial businesses, but the U.S. military requires (and provides) additional accreditation to ensure safe and effective operation of pest control on their facilities.
Entomologists with advanced degrees are employed in all military branches, providing research and applied support to troops around the world. You may have heard that more military personnel have died of insect-transmitted diseases than have ever died in combat, so it is essential that they are protected from arthropod-borne disease organisms. Military scientists first developed strategies for protecting soldiers from yellow fever and numerous other vector-borne diseases. Read more about Jacob Holloway's career with the US Army Environmental Command in our ENTO alumni profiles!