How to Become an Entomologist
Entomologist Job Duties
Skills and Qualities of an Entomologist
Entomologist Salaries
Influential Professional Entomologists
Leading Organizations for Entomologists
Top Cities for Entomologist Jobs
Other Careers of Interest

How to become an Entomologist

Because this is a scientific discipline and the work is all research based, a PhD is usually required to hold a formal entomologist position. In addition, entomologists tend to specialize in a particular field or focus on the study of a particular type of insect, and focusing one's graduate studies and gaining hands-on experience in that field (via internships and/or postdoctoral studies) is also crucial to obtaining job opportunities. Finally, many entomologist are a part of a university or college, which requires a PhD to teach.

What does an Entomologist do?

Entomologists are scientists that study insects, primarily. The word "entomology" is derived from the Greek meaning "segmented", i.e. insects which are recognizable by their segmented shape. Entomologists are a type of zoologist, which are scientists that study animals. Beyond pure research, the findings of these insects researchers is often applied to the agricultural industry in the study of symbiotic and parasitic/damaging insect-crop dynamics, and some entomologists study insects in order to shed light on finding useful chemical compounds for industrial and/or pharmaceutical use. An entomologists' work can take place in the lab, if the study subjects are contained within the lab, or it can also happen in the field with the observation of insects in a natural ecology. Like all biological and related research, entomology often requires long term investments in time and resources into a single scientific question or problem. There are many and diverse careers in entomology, ranging from pure research at universities to applied entomology. Some entomologists work in agricultural business, for example, and are specialists in bees, which are in turn a highly important part of the agricultural cycle in the US and other countries. Many entomologists are focused on how to develop ways to prevent the spread of harmful pests who are insects, like preventing invasive species from harming a delicate ecosystem, spread disease or devastate crops, wildlife, livestock or forests and other natural resources. These types of scientists are regularly employed by government agencies who regulate these sorts of things. On the other hand, some entomologists research what insects can be helpful, either by what they do, produce or eat, to a particular environment. There are environmental and agricultural applications for this type of research. There is even a branch of entomology that helps fight crimes, as the study of insects as it relates to decaying corpses helps determine the cause and timing of death in homicide cases.

What skills or qualities do I need to become an Entomologist?

An analytical mindset is important, working with large amounts of data. So is patience, due to sometimes the long-term nature of some projects. Entomologists sometimes work alone or in teams, the latter of which necessitates good communication skills. Because they produce findings and presentations, both oral and written communication skills are also important. If an entomologist wishes to work for a government organization, it is important that hey have a knowledge and respect for the rules and regulations of that organization.

How much does an Entomologist make?

In 2007, entomologists and other similar biologists made between $32,000 - $86,000+ a year.

Who are some influential professionals in this field?

A good bet is to check out who is leading the primary professional and academic organizations in this field as well as professors who are teaching at prestigious institutions in this area. For example, Dr. Michael E. Gray is the President of the Entomological Society of America and is a professor the University of Illinois Dept of Crop Science department.

What are some leading organizations in this field?

Some leading organizations in this field are the American Institute of Biological Sciences, the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, the Amateur Entomologists' Society, and the Entomological Society of America.

What are the top cities for Entomologist jobs?

When performing a job search, there are not many positions available for simply "entomologist" as many positions available in this field are much more specialized in nature and often require specialization in the study of a particular region or type of organism. As such, it is a better idea to start with a region or type of ecology one is interested in and from there find organizations or institutions that study that particular subject. For example, sometimes a university in one part of the US may have a focus on insects that dwell in another part of the world.

Other Careers of Interest

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Marine Biologist
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Meteorologist / Weather Forecaster
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Paleontologist are scientist whose main purpose is to study fossils of living organisms and animals for the purpose of learning what the earth was...

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