Future Undergraduates

Feed the world

Many “traditional” jobs in pest management

  • Agricultural pest control - commodity based
    • Field crops
    • Horticultural crops – vegetables
    • Fruit crops
    • Livestock pest management – parasites and vector control
    • Apiculture (beekeeping) – only insect based commodity
  • Regulatory entomology – prevent entry of harmful pests; regulate use of pesticides



Protect people and property
  • Fiber – cotton, silk
  • Forest products – timber, pulp, paper products
  • Urban Pest Management
    • Structural and Industrial
    • Ornamentals
    • Turfgrass, golf courses, sports fields
    • Stored products and food industry
    • IPM in Schools


Preserve species and protect the environment
  • Functional Biodiversity – study the diversity of species and communities
  • Environmental biology and ecology
    • Invasion Biology – invasive species
    • Conservation Biology – understand with the aim of “conserving” the key components of ecosystems form and function - role of bark beetles in forest recycling, watershed management, and forest fire management
  • Natural Resource Management
    • Monitor and survey strategic and vulnerable habitats and ecosystems i.e. mayfly community as indicators of environmental health in local waterways
    • Risk Assessment – evaluating the risk of specific pest control on the environment i.e. transgenic field crops


Prevent spread of disease
  • Public health
    • Mosquitoes and ticks are arthropod vectors of disease-causing agents to humans and have a significant impact on human health throughout the world. A number of new and emerging vector-borne diseases are of public health significance in the United States. Diseases such as West Nile virus and Lyme Disease cause considerable human mortality and morbidity.



Solve crimes

Forensic entomology deals with the application and study of insects and other arthropods related to legal issues. Three components of forensics include:

  • Urban - legal proceedings involving insects and related animals that affect man made structures and other aspects of the human environment.
  • Stored products - proceedings involving insects infesting stored commodities.
  • Medicolegal
    • Relates to determination of the time (postmortem internal or PMI) or site of human death.
    • Cases involving possible sudden death
    • Traffic accidents with no immediate obvious cause.
    • Possible misuse of insects



Teach science education
  • K-12 teachers
  • University professors
  • Zoos, botanical gardens, butterfly houses
  • Museums, other informal science education



This brochure from the Entomological Society of America describes the great career opportunities for students interested in insects and other Arthropods. You can also download a printable version here

Interested in a career in Entomology?  Contact Purdue Entomology about our Entomology Program.


Learn more about Entomology @ Purdue:


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