How Can YOU be certified as a Professional Wetland Scientist?

The Society of Wetland Scientists Professional Certification Program (SWSPCP) was formed in 1994 to certify wetland professionals who meet the highest standards for education, experience, and ethics in the practice of wetland science.  SWSPCP serves the public and governments’ need to identify qualified individuals to assess and manage wetland resources and provides a comparable professional certification system to other professions, such as engineering and landscape architecture.  The SWSPCP is independently accredited by the Council of Engineering & Science Specialty Boards in the United States and is internationally recognized as the authority on certification of wetland professionals.

There are two primary levels of certification: Wetland Professional in Training (WPIT) and Professional Wetland Scientist (PWS).  WPIT is considered a preliminary step for people who meet the basic educational requirements, but do not yet have the experience requirements.  A PWS meets stringent academic and work experience standards, adheres to a high level of professional ethical standards, and conducts and practices wetland science in multi-disciplinary work environments.

In order to make the program accessible to all qualified individuals, regardless of geography or financial standing, the SWSPCP has increased global participation by offering a lower fee structure for developing countries.

To promote the maintenance of high technical standards, PWS are required to renew their certification every five years.  As such, these individuals must submit documentation that they have worked in wetland science at least 75% of that time and have continued professional development with wetland instruction, attendance at wetland conferences, wetland publications, or service for wetland-related organizations.

While the SWSPCP got its start in the U.S., our presence has grown internationally and we are expanding our global reach with SWSPCP Champions and members in China, Taiwan, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom, Denmark, Canada, South Africa, Mexico, Australia, and Peru.  To find out more about the Program or to apply to become a WPIT or PWS, visit the SWSPCP website at: Also, please click [here] to learn more.

Lastly, an information meeting could be scheduled with anyone interested in learning more about the program. Please contact:

John Lowenthal, PWD, Senior Professional Wetland Scientist
Society of Wetland Scientists Professional Certification Program – Past President, Current Chair of Certification Standards Committee
Principle, Senior Biologist
501 Butler Farm Road, Suite H
Hampton, VA 23666
Email: [email protected]

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