ForeWord Reviews

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Green Careers

You Can Make Money And Save the Planet

Foreword Review — May / June 2010

The emphasis put on “green jobs” by President Obama and the global recognition of environmental responsibility are already resulting in a whole new employment sector. This is why Jennifer Power Scott’s Green Careers is a well-timed and useful guide for high school and college students.

Scott, a Canadian journalist, spent a year researching the green jobs marketplace and came to the legitimate conclusion that the world is witnessing “a green revolution.” She writes, “Concern for the environment is making its way into all our lives and almost every profession. Companies need smart, talented, creative people—and lots of them—to keep up with all of that change.”

But Green Careers isn’t a preachy how-to guide. Rather, it is a compilation of biographical sketches of thirty young eco-entrepreneurs who, through their careers, have made the green revolution work for them. Scott makes the point that not all of them are environmental activists, and that “the green job market has room for everyone.” This is an important message for a teen who may have an interest but not yet a passion for an environmentally focused job.

The author breaks the book into eleven chapters which help to identify and describe various types of green careers. While “Building Green” and “Organically Yours” might be obvious, “Urban Green,” “Eco-Health,” and “The Art of Being Green” bring a new, broader perspective to available careers that young people may not have considered.

Each of the people profiled is youthful, vibrant, and intriguing. Their stories offer valuable insight into how they got interested in a green career and what they’ve done to be successful. Sprinkled throughout the text are eye-opening sidebars that help expand the reader’s understanding of the green revolution—such as a snippet about “where old cell phones go to die,” or descriptions of innovative ecology programs offered by universities.

Scott’s writing style is breezy and upbeat. She is good at turning a phrase and engaging the reader. It is also worth noting that the book is very well-designed. There are plenty of sub-heads, bullets, and graphic signals, and the second color (green of course) serves to enhance the text and highlight important information. A particularly nice touch is the collection of full-color photos of the people profiled in the book, captioned with their names, job titles, and the page numbers that correspond to their stories.

Green Careers is a different kind of employment guide that offers useful information and will also inspire young readers.

Barry Silverstein