Soil scientists map and classify soils. They conduct research on soil degradation or decomposition, or on movement of substances like nutrients and pesticides through the soil profile. Sometimes they identify problems such as wetness and erosion that limit soil use. Often they write soil descriptions and prepare information about soils.
Universities, private industries, USDA agencies, chemical companies, petroleum companies, and consulting firms all hire soil scientists.
To be a soil scientist you need a college degree in soil science or a related biological, physical, or earth science. People who become soil scientists usually like studying the sciences, especially physics, chemistry, geology, environmental science, and biology.
In high school take college preparatory courses in physics, biology, mathematics, and chemistry. Communications courses are also helpful. Take courses in earth science, environmental science, or geology if they are offered. Try to get practical experience in these areas.
-- McArthur Floyd, Alabama A&M University