Job openings in college and university geology departments may increase in the next decade, suggest data from the American Geological Institute.

An AGI survey of the ages of geologists shows that schools have few young faculty members but a bulge of older ones moving toward retirement, a good set-up for a hiring boom.

In the total population of geologists, about 29% are 34 or under, says Nicholas Claudy from AGI. But inacademia, only 17% are that young. The upper end of the age scale is skewed too, with about 29% of the total population of geologists over 55, while 36% of academic geologists are over 55.

When these older professors start retiring, Claudy predicts, we will witness a burst of opportunities giving young geologists lots of choice in their careers. However, he does not predict fast increases in starting salaries. It takes more than retirements to shake up universities, salary...

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