Types of explorer jobs

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Exploring may sound like a career path from centuries past, but there are many jobs alive and well today that involve exploring. The adventurous spirit inside of many young people often draws them to a career that will allow them to explore the unknown and make new discoveries. Exploring the ocean, venturing into space and looking for clues to the past are all types of exploring that are active parts of explorers' jobs available today.


The oceanographer is a valuable asset to many parts of the business world. These scientists spend their time learning about the sea either from a laboratory setting or on ships sailing the ocean and sometimes in vessels that explore the depths of the world’s oceans. Information gathered from this sea exploration is beneficial to industries such as the shipbuilding, fishing or oil industries, among others. These scientists often have a diverse background in geology, biology or meteorology and other fields that help them to understand the complex nature of the oceans.

Often, between research trips, oceanographers are in an academic setting where they teach classes on the subject and conduct academic research at a university. During the research trips and other travel related to the work, they might find themselves exploring the ocean in scuba gear or in specially designed submarines.


Astronauts are pilots and scientists who train for missions in outer space. Since 1959, there have been more than 250 astronauts who have made the journey into space. These jobs allow the rare opportunity to explore a part of the universe that we know little about.

Astronauts typically work for NASA in the United States or for government agencies in Russia, where they are called cosmonauts, or in China, where they are called taikonauts. These highly selective jobs are usually occupied by military pilots who fly the space shuttle and by specially qualified scientists from a variety of backgrounds.

The space exploration field is a risky occupation and has cost dozens of people their lives. In addition, it is a difficult job to get. NASA selects around 20 candidates for the training program every two years. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree or higher in engineering, a biological science, a physical science or math. These candidates must also pass a rigorous physical exam. There is no age limit. Pilots must have 1,000 hours of experience as a command pilot in a jet.


An archaeologist is a scientist who explores the earth’s past. Using a combination of academic research and field study, the archaeologist reconstructs the past using remains, artefacts and a variety of other items indicative of past cultures and life. These items are found during excavations of historic sites, underwater recovery or otherwise.

Archaeologists often have an advanced degree in anthropology and specialise in archaeology. These jobs take place in a variety of settings, including classrooms, labs or in the field.

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