In Fall 2019, the “Inside View” blog series was created to help Forestry and Environmental Resources students learn more about popular careers graduates pursue. Throughout the school year, we interviewed professionals from various agencies and companies to broadly describe each career field.
Just to review, here are the main takeaways from each blog:
Pay close attention to the application and the job posting. The application process can be lengthy, so try not to be discouraged. Once hired, employees with state agencies enjoy the flexible schedule and work-life balance their career allows.
Sizes of consulting firms can range from large, global companies to smaller, local firms. Consulting firms function differently depending on their size. Finding employment with an environmental consulting firm requires networking with firm employees and faculty members.
This option is great for individuals looking for fun, hands-on opportunities educating others about the environment. The Environmental Education minor and Environmental Education Certification are important and helpful tools when pursuing this career field. Full-time employment in this field is difficult to find, so students can expect to start in part-time and temporary positions.
Nonprofit Organizations are diverse workplaces employing individuals with a wide range of talents. Employees with these organizations specialize in breadth over depth, working on a variety of environmental hot topics. Before applying to a nonprofit, research the organization’s mission statement and see if it aligns with your values.
Throughout the blog series, a couple pieces of advice were offered for every profession:
Find internships and/or volunteer positions in your prospective field.
Gaining experience grants an inside look at potential careers. You can discover what you like or dislike about a job or field in general. Also, previous experience is an excellent way to prove you are a competitive candidate for the position. In fact, one of our interviewed professionals admitted many new hires are familiar faces.
Network, network, network!
Many of the interviewed professionals heard about their current job by networking. Establishing connections can occur through an instructor at NC State, but many connections can take place in a professional setting like an internship. Not only will networking help with your personal career, networking is a great skill to have for many professions. In career fields like Environmental Consulting and Environmental Education, networking is a necessary part of the job.
So now what?
If you have not already, start taking steps to prepare for the future. As many students know, career fairs are hosted on campus every year. Stay updated on career fairs to find an internship or meet potential employers. The Career Development Center (https://careers.dasa.ncsu.edu/) has a plethora of resources for students looking for ways to improve professionalism including workshops, a virtual job board, and more. Start chatting with instructors, which are also a great resource for students. Professors are an asset when searching for jobs in the future, serving as professional references or messengers about employment opportunities. These tips along with the suggested advice above will set you on the right track!
Written By: Leslie Smith