Why Environmental, Soil, and Water Science

Taylor CoomerTaylor Coomer is an Environmental, Soil, and Water Science major with a minor in Crop Management.

A graduate of Piggot High School, Taylor grew up as a Razorback fan. She only applied to the University of Arkansas, she said, because “my dad graduated here. It’s just a legacy thing.”

She chose her major because it is close to her roots. “I grew up as a cotton farmer in the Delta region. It seemed natural to transition to study what I loved growing up doing.” Taylor is in the Bumpers College Honors Program. Her honors thesis research includes testing effects of water use efficiency of biochar applied to soil in which cotton is grown.

Taylor appreciates the relationships with other students and teachers in the Bumpers College. “It’s hard to find teachers who don’t know you by name or face. This helps the students make great connections for career possibilities. The small class size is great, it is easy to receive one-on-one help with classes.”

For prospective students, Taylor has advice: “Do what you love—don’t think about the money. Don’t be afraid to take chances, I came here as a pre-med major and now I’m the furthest thing from it, but it’s what I love.” For academic advice or questions, email Taylor at tcoomer@uark.edu.


Why is Environmental, Soil, and Water Science important?


• Growing awareness of environmental issues • Public demands for clean air and water, and a healthy food supply • Conservation of natural resources

Who should be interested?

The Environmental, Soil, and Water major is for students interested in issues such as water quality, proper use of soils, land application of wastes, proper use of fertilizers, fate of pesticides in soil and water, bioremediation of contaminated soils and waters, and wetlands. The major provides a strong science background, as well as a practical education.

Career Opportunities

Students who graduate in Environmental, Soil, and Water Science can work in the following areas:

• Arkansas Soil and Water Conservation Commission • Arkansas Department of Pollution Control and Ecology • Arkansas Department of Health • Cooperative Extension Service • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) • United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) • Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) • Forest Service (FS) • Fish and Wildlife Service • many others...    Private Sector

• Environmental consulting • Land-use planning • Waste management • Industry • many others...


• Many students go on to Graduate School to further their education • Soil Scientist • Soil Physicist • Soil Chemist • Soil Microbiologist • Pesticide Residue Chemist • Research Technician • many others...

Possible Certifications

Coursework prepares students to take the Certified Professional Soil Science exam or the Environmental Professional certification exam.