Community Spotlight

Southeastern Environmental Education Alliance (SEEA) authors eeGuidance for Equitable Pay and Hiring in Environmental Education

March 2024

How do we harness the full potential of environmental education to create a more just and sustainable future? The Southeastern Environmental Education Alliance (SEEA) is using regional data to help answer that question.

In 2021 the SEEA conducted a landscape analysis to understand the current state, ongoing needs, and growth areas for the regional environmental education field. Among other findings , the data confirms that entry-level pay in environmental education is 15-25% lower than in comparable fields such as forestry, tourism, and formal education.

Using the SEEA findings, environmental educators are making the case for more equitable hiring and pay practices. This report provides recommendations and highlights some best practices for environmental and outdoor education organizations to help make the field more diverse, welcoming, and sustainable. . 

“We hope that employers review the standards in the eeGuidance when designing positions, staff and supervisors use it to advocate for higher salaries, and that job boards flag positions that meet these standards to help job seekers find sustainable employment,” said Lauren Pyle, one of the eeGuidance authors and former Executive Director of the Environmental Educators of North Carolina. Once applied, these standards and resources will help improve employee retention, attract more diverse talent, create a sustainable career path, and establish the field of environmental education as a viable profession.

“These research-based recommendations provide organizations who emphasize environmental education with a strong path forward in regard to equitable employment practices,” said Ashley Hoffman, Executive Director of SEEA. “By following this guidance, we can further support the next generation of environmental educators and ensure that our planet is in good hands.”