GVI’s Top 8 Tips on How to Pursue a Career in Marine Conservation
- Find Your Passion
If you are reading this you are most likely interested in pursuing a career in the marine conservation industry, which is a good start. Within this industry there are, however, a range of areas that you can work in. Are you more interested in recreational diving, marine conservation or research?
- International Experience
More and more people are seeking out international experience, in the form of volunteering or internships. But how can it boost a career in the marine industry? International experience brings you closer to other cultures, ideas, values and beliefs. This shows employers that you are adventurous, curious, and eager to push yourself beyond your comfort zone.
- Intercultural Competency
Intercultural competency is being able to effectively communicate and appropriately behave around people from different cultures. In the marine industry you will often have to travel and deal with people from all around the world. Enhancing your perspective of the world will make you more globally minded and in turn, more employable, even in this industry.
- Professional Development
The concept of professional development has shifted from merely getting workplace experience or training. It has widened to include more hands-on, practical forms of experience. You can gain this through volunteer experience (yes it counts), or by joining an international internship (yes they are sometimes unpaid, but remember that you’re investing in your future, and this experience is worth a kind of currency that will carry over throughout your entire life). Use the opportunity to network and build-up some contacts in the industry.
- Gain New Practical Skills and Techniques
Practical experience teaches you things that theory cannot. Even if you have a degree related to marine conservation or biology, it is worthwhile obtaining or furthering your marine research and diving skills and qualifications.
- Develop Your Soft Skills
Soft skills such as teamwork, leadership, adaptability, listening and problem solving skills, are not to be overlooked in the marine industry. A volunteer or intership program related to marine conservation can also provide you with the oppurtunity to develop these skills to improve your employability.
- Find a Mentor
Regardless of the industry, you will find exponential benefit in getting to know marine biologists, people pursuing conservation, and collecting marine data for research analysis. These people can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses. Many of the established people you admire within the marine industry had to start at the bottom too, so they will be able to offer any words of wisdom they have. Find a mentor who can guide you and assist you in taking steps in the right direction.
- Stay Up To Date With Marine Conservation Trends and Issues
If you are informed about the latest marine research trends and issues facing the industry, you demonstrate your passion for the profession you aim to pursue. Follow marine conservation groups to show your support and help raise awareness.
Take a look at GVI’s marine conservation volunteer programs and internship to learn more about how they are making a difference and contributing to the marine industry.