It can be daunting knowing where to begin, and how to make yourself stand out from the crowd but there are a number of things you can do to improve your chances of breaking into the sector:
1. Volunteer – Do you have a local conservation group or wildlife trust near you? A few hours of volunteering each week can really show commitment to the profession on your CV.
2. Improve your practical skills – As well as volunteering, attending formal training courses can help you to demonstrate your practical skills. There are many many courses available. Why not take a look at our Training & Events pages, where as a CIEEM member you are eligible for reduced rates? (We also have a Low Income Rate Policy to support members, where if your annual income is a below a threshold fees are reduced even further).
3. Become a Student Member of CIEEM – Membership of a professional body shows your commitment to raise the profile of the profession and to promote the highest standards of practice for the benefit of nature and society. Some employers state membership of a professional body as a requirement within their job advertisements, so this can immediately work in your favour when on the job hunt.
Student Membership, at a bargain price of £25 for the year (FREE for students on accredited degrees) entitles you to a wide range of benefits, including; access to our quarterly In Practice magazine, discounted rates to attend our Training & Events (many of which are at a beginner level so suitable for students / recent graduates), the ability to get involved with your local Member Network, plus much more!
4. Attend a CIEEM conference – We offer 5 free student places at all of our conferences. In addition to the fantastic quality presentations and workshops, they are also a great opportunity to network and meet people in the sector.
5. Get involved with your local Member Network – As a member you can get involved with your local member network which will provide opportunities to network, share knowledge and learn more about the science and practice of the profession. Member Network committees also run events such as workshops and field trips, as well as taking part in other activities such as careers fairs and policy engagement. All Member Network events are listed on our Training & Events page.
6. Register on our Mentoring Platform – As a member you can sign up to our Mentoring Platform to be matched with a mentor who can support you in a number of areas, one of which is ‘starting your career’. A mentor can offer fantastic advise based on their years of experience in the sector.
7. View our student webinar – Hear first-hand from the CIEEM Secretariat about ways to get involved with the Institute and how we can support you in your professional development. We will be running a couple of student / graduate webinars each year so keep an eye out on new ones coming up. They are free to attend (you can get involved with live Q&As) and they can also be downloaded from our Resources Hub if you can not attend at the time.