Let’s do it again: The 1,000 supports early career professionals

Shannon Smith, manager of Kaua'i National Wildlife Refuge Complex in Hawaii. ©Greg Stutzer/USFWS

In June, The 1,000 provided free membership in the Student Development Working Group for more than 2,000 TWS student members. One month later, the prestigious group of leaders is at it again, now providing membership in the Early Career Professional Working Group as a free benefit for nearly 900 individuals who are TWS new professional members.

“Early career professionals often face tremendous challenges both financially and in getting their career onto their desired path,” said Ed Thompson, chief operating officer of The Wildlife Society. “This free membership in the working group will provide them with information and networking opportunities that they can leverage to accelerate their progress towards achieving their goals.”

Prior to this new benefit being launched, the working group had 130 members. With this new benefit provided by The 1,000, the ECPWG can now act as the voice of TWS new professionals as they advise Council on issues relevant to the new generation of wildlife professionals.

Maggi Sliwinski, current chair of the ECPWG, hopes this change will help promote more dialogue among members and between the leadership and members. She believes that working groups have a lot to offer, and that automatic membership in the working group will allow people to be involved without an overwhelming sense of responsibility in their already busy lives as early career professionals.

“We’re trying to build a network of people that can communicate with each other about strategies for success and ways to avoid failure,” Sliwinski said, noting later that one of the new benefits coming with this change is a special edition of the weekly eWildlifer. “Having a professional newsletter that is sanctioned by TWS (the eWildlifer) with additional content relevant to early career professionals will be really beneficial and will help the working group stay active.”

Early Career Professional Working Group Value Proposition

Being a member of the ECPWG has numerous benefits, including:

  1. Receiving a weekly version of the eWildlifer geared specifically toward early career professionals;
  1. Networking with other early career professionals through our Facebook page, Facebook group and the TWS Annual Conference;
  1. Planning and taking part in professional development opportunities, which could include workshops at the TWS Annual Conference, webinars or local events;
  1. Option to apply for a competitive grant to help with certification.

To learn more about the Early Career Professional Working Group, visit wildlife.org/ecpwg/ or like them on Facebook.