Conference Resume Workshops: Kick-start your career

By Kristina Hunt

In addition to our resume review sessions in the Members Activity Center, TWS will also hold three Resume Workshops during the Annual Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico, this September. ©The Wildlife Society

Many graduating seniors feel anxious about entering the work world. There is a lot of pressure to find a job and stress to quickly develop the skills needed to land it.

This year, The Wildlife Society is offering students a chance to help ease that stress through three special new Resume Workshops during the 24th Annual Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Humboldt State University natural resources career advisor Kristina Hunt will moderate the three sessions, which will guide students on resume and cover letter writing, interview strategies, and more. The workshops will cost students just $10, but provide invaluable insight for their futures. Spots are limited, so register for the conference now and sign up for your desired workshop time before it fills up!

While attending the Resume Workshop is a great start, students should take advantage of their university’s career advisors throughout their college year-round. As a college student, you attend classes every day. If you are majoring in wildlife, you may be taking a wildlife techniques course, or an ethics course; it is easy to understand why these classes are valuable. You may also hold jobs, internships or participate in community service.  Experience in any form allows students to build skills like reliability, communication, teamwork and participate in hands-on activities.  How do you translate this in a way that is relevant to an employer?  What is the best way to stand out among applicants?  Visiting a career advisor can help.

A career advisor can give you personalized advice on anything from resume, cover letter and interview strategies, to internships and jobs in your field, to advice on applying to graduate school and so much more.  They have networks in place, they have gleaned advice from those working at the same organizations you are interested in and they do these things on a daily basis. They are a neutral party that you can share ideas, goals, and drafts with, practice an elevator speech with or simply ask questions without being compared or judged.

Building career capital happens in stages.  A student should meet with their career advisor at the beginning of their freshman year.  This is a great time to discuss major choices, and careers that might fit your values, interests and skills. In this stage, it is ok if you do not know what you want to do yet.  There are many forms of guided self-reflection, which is meant to inform you as you explore your options. Through the next few years, continue meeting to find meaningful internships, discuss ways to develop areas of your resume and continue to focus on future goals.  The more you meet, the more you will improve your career skills and if you do it over an extended period of time (say, 4 years), the easier it will be to find a career when you graduate.

Most universities offer their services at no additional cost to you, so be sure to explore what they have to offer.  There will be presentations on how to construct a cover letter and resume specifically for your field at The Wildlife Society’s national conference in September.  If you have not visited a career advisor yet, come see me in Albuquerque.

Register for the conference today! Members save $200 and can save $50 more if registered before July 1! Be sure to book a discounted room with one of our host hotels before the blocks fill up!