After making the decision to pursue a career in wildlife conservation and having a passion from an early age as well as volunteering with the Chat Moss project on a placement, the opportunity of a paid traineeship seemed like the logical next step into turning my passion into a career, gaining valuable training and qualifications to stand me up in a highly competitive sector.
Before becoming a trainee, I did an 18 months volunteering as a placement working with on the Chat Moss Project which involving managing my own projects but I have always had a passion for wildlife. I also have a creative writing degree focusing on nature writing and I previously worked in customer service so I was able to bring my communication skills from previous employment.
I feel I got a lot out of the traineeship but I would say I gained useful qualifications that many jobs class as essential such as brush-cutter etc, experience in partnership working, deeper knowledge of conservation, more experience in surveys, working in a great team.
To anyone considering applying for the traineeship I would say make sure you have a lot of volunteering under your belt and that it demonstrates some level of responsibility (leading groups, managing projects, planning/delivering events). Keep a portfolio of your work to show yourself off with lots of pictures of you in it. Also, although your plans and thoughts might change, try to have a vague idea of the direction in which you want to go; 9 month flies by therefore you really want to try and tailor your experience so it is as much use to your future career in conservation as possible.
I am now working for the Lancashire Wildlife Trust with their Educational department at Brockholes. I am having an awesome time and enjoying developing my career.