Conference student events that will jumpstart your career

Careers With Wildlife Services at last year’s TWS conference in Raleigh, N.C. ©TWS

Early bird pre-registration for this year’s conference is now open! Register by June 30 to save an additional $50. All registration prices will increase $50 on July 1. And don’t forget to book your room through one of our host hotels early. They will sell out well in advance of the conference!

One of the best things a student can do to for their career is network with professionals in their field of study. If you’re a wildlife or natural resources student there’s no better place to do so than a TWS Annual Conference.

As one wildlife professional said in a quote featured in a recent student version of the weekly eWildlifer: “It’s who you know! There are lots of people that have good grades, so you need to make connections while at TWS meetings and the TWS Annual Conference. TWS can be key in getting a job.”

A recent survey revealed that 85 percent of all jobs are filled via networking, which is why students now make up nearly 50 percent of TWS Annual Conference attendance. In addition to networking, the Society strives to make your conference experience as a student as beneficial as possible by hosting several special events, career oriented sessions and professional development opportunities. This year is no different, and we’ve even added to the array of student events that are available to you in Albuquerque in September.

Here are a few you won’t want to miss, but stay tuned next week for more!

Student symposium: Navigating the Path to Professional Success

Get the inside scoop from a variety of wildlife professionals on what it’s like to work in their specific field and the multiple career paths available for aspiring wildlifers today. You’ll also gain advice on resume writing, interviewing, networking and TWS certification and hear how participating in TWS chapters and sections can benefit your career. A panel at the end of the symposium will give attendees the chance to discuss the wildlife profession with accomplished biologists across a wide spectrum of the wildlife field, including academia, governmental agencies and nonprofits.

“The sessions aren’t just about helping students think about getting a job, but to help them think about building a whole career,” Pacifici said. “All of us are still building our careers, and being part of The Wildlife Society is a huge part of that.”

Ready, Set, Go! Federal Employment Workshop

Ever dreamed of working in federal natural resources management? In the first-ever Ready Set Go! Federal Employment Workshop, sponsored by the U.S. Forest Service and co-hosted by other federal agencies, you’ll learn how to prepare to become an agency wildlife biologist.

“Students need to be super competitive and application-ready if they want to get a job in today’s market,” said organizer Diana Doan-Crider, adjunct professor with the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management at Texas A&M University. “We’re trying to get students to where they’re not disappointed they can’t get into the system. We’re trying to get them ready to swim.”

Human resources and field staff from all hiring agency organizations will be there that afternoon. They’ll tell you how to make yourself marketable to the federal government starting early in your undergraduate career and how to navigate the hiring process, which can be highly confusing, tedious and challenging. They’ll stress the importance of pursuing internships and ensuring you complete all course requirements. In the evening session, the advisors will also help you create a competitive profile for the online application process.

Careers With…

Our Careers With U.S. Forest Service and Careers With Wildlife Services sessions have been well-received by students at the past two conferences, so this year, we’re adding two more! In addition to USFS and Wildlife Services, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Bureau of Land Management will also be hosting Careers With sessions in Albuquerque. Listen to employees from all four federal agencies talk about their experiences and learn about what careers each has to offer.