Two Conservation Career Symposiums Held

Top College Students in Conservation-Related Fields Attend Conservation Career Symposium // Photo Credit: USFWS

Highlighting U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) careers is what the National Conservation Training Center’s (NCTC) Division of Education Outreach focuses on routinely, but spearheading two symposiums in early February for college students from across the country was anything but routine!

The first symposium took place at NCTC where Deputy Director Rowan Gould, NCTC Director Jay Slack, and International Affairs Assistant Director Bryan Arroyo welcomed 40 college students working toward undergraduate or graduate degrees in natural resources and the biological services. Workshops led by Service professionals included resume building, interview techniques, leadership styles, networking skills, details of the new federal Pathways Program, and tips on navigating the USAJOBS website to identify and apply to positions with the FWS. Students took a field trip to a FWS partner, the Conservation Fund’s Freshwater Institute in Shepherdstown, WV, to learn about applications of aquaculture science to fish conservation and water and food sustainability.

The second symposium for 45 college students, a mirror of the first but held a week later, was hosted by the Service’s Southwest Region at the Dennis Chavez Federal Building in Albuquerque, NM. Region 2 Director Dr. Benjamin Tuggle urged the students to keep faith in their dreams of becoming conservation professionals. The Albuquerque students visited the Bachechi Open Space on the Rio Grande to learn about Albuquerque's drinking water challenges and monitoring efforts for the endangered Rio Grande silvery minnow.

Top college students majoring in conservation-related fields were asked to submit an application through partnering professional organizations, university departments, and Service staff. The Service's Office of Diversity and Inclusive Workforce Management reviewed over 250 highly qualified student applications and selected 85.

 -- published --  February 26, 2013
 -- photo credit --  USFWS

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