GVI sea turtle conservation

Make a Difference

If you’re motivated to make a difference, working in marine life conservation is a rewarding path to choose. Learn more about how to start a career working with sea turtles.

Read time: 5 mins

By: Petrina Darrah

All seven species of sea turtles are facing a serious decline, and getting into a career to protect these amazing marine creatures can be really fulfilling. But where do you even begin?

Well, like any journey, it starts with taking that first step in the right direction. If you’re looking to work with sea turtles, that might mean jumping into an environmental internship or signing up for a volunteer program. These hands-on experiences are like gold – they give you a real feel for the job and let you dive into conservation research. Plus, you’ll expand your professional circle, which will definitely come in handy when you’re on the hunt for a job in this super competitive field.

Remember, the most important thing is to just get started. Here are some simple ways to kickstart your path towards a sea turtle-focused career.

GVI sea turtle conservation

Work with green turtles in Phang Nga, Thailand

Joining GVI’s sea turtle conservation internship in Phang Nga opens up a unique chance to gain hands-on experience and get involved in impactful initiatives.

This internship opportunity doesn’t just boost your career possibilities in marine conservation; it’s also a fantastic way to learn the ropes of working with sea turtles. By the time you complete the internship, your skillset will have expanded significantly, making your CV stand out.

As an intern, you’ll dive into a head start program that focuses on understanding turtle development and behaviour. Your tasks might include assisting in rehabilitating and enriching the turtles, administering medication, and conducting behavioural studies.

Participating in this program means actually making a difference to the local green turtle populations. A couple of years back, GVI’s Phang Nga team welcomed two injured turtles with broken fins. Sea turtle interns played a crucial role in nursing these two little patients back to health – administering medicine and ensuring their well-being. After years of care, both turtles regained their strength and were ready to return to the ocean. The Royal Navy even invited members of GVI’s team to witness their release, expressing their gratitude to everyone involved in the turtles’ recovery.

GVI sea turtle conservation

Search job boards

Finding jobs that involve working with sea turtles can be a real challenge – they’re not always easy to come by, and competition can be fierce. But don’t worry, once you’ve rolled up your sleeves and gained some hands-on experience through internships or volunteering with sea turtle conservation, you’ll be in a better position to expand your search and dig into job postings that really matter.

Now, picture this: you could snag a job as a research assistant, getting up close and personal with these incredible creatures. Or how about becoming a survey technician, diving into the data that helps protect them? If you’re more of a people person, you might find your niche as a program coordinator. And remember, behind every successful effort, there’s a team working hard behind the scenes – roles like fundraising coordinator and communications support are just as vital.

To stay in the loop, why not set up job alerts on your favourite job platforms? That way, you won’t miss out on any exciting opportunities in the world of sea turtle work. So, get ready to spread those wings – or shall we say, fins – and make a splash in the sea turtle job market!

GVI conservation

Volunteer with loggerhead and green turtles in Greece and Costa Rica

Imagine embarking on a volunteer program that not only grants you hands-on experience but also lets you dive into the thrilling world of sea turtle conservation. Picture yourself in the heart of Greece or the lush landscapes of Costa Rica – both hotspots for sea turtle programs and brimming with natural beauty – the perfect playgrounds for future turtle champions.

GVI stands ready with exciting opportunities in two captivating locales: the island of Giannitsochori and Kekoldi Indigenous Reserve. You’ll get up close with green and loggerhead turtles in the heart of a protected rainforest or on a beautiful Grecian beach. Brace yourself for witnessing the epic moment when baby turtles take their very first plunge into the deep blue sea, and keep an eye out for majestic adults gliding gracefully through the turquoise waves.

But it’s not just about the turtles – GVI’s commitment extends to the long-term and the local community. As part of their sea turtle volunteer or internship programs, you’ll be an active player in vital tasks like documenting nesting activity and safeguarding nests from crafty predators and occasional floods.

Don’t worry, you won’t be thrown into the deep end. GVI provides comprehensive training to ensure you’re equipped with the know-how to truly make a difference. These newfound skills will stick with you, serving as valuable tools as you pursue a career teeming with sea turtle adventures.

GVI conservation work

Connect with organisations directly

Sometimes, reaching for your dreams means taking a direct approach. If you’re aiming for a career working with sea turtles, don’t hesitate to be proactive. Get out there and share your CV with organisations that align with your passion. You can start by reaching out on platforms like LinkedIn or by exploring the careers and contact pages of organisations that pique your interest.

Not every opportunity makes it to the online job boards, especially when organisations are small and resources are tight. You might just catch them at the perfect moment – precisely when they’re wondering how to fill a crucial role.

You can also tap into your personal network. Knowing people within the conservation world is a huge bonus when it comes to careers working with sea turtles. Expanding your network is another invaluable takeaway from volunteer programs and internships. Knowing experts in the field can build your credibility. Plus, they can put you in touch with the right people. They might hear of potential vacancies before they are listed, so don’t be shy to check in with anyone you know working in sea turtle conservation.

Reaching out to people you know — or complete strangers — might sound daunting. But if you have taken part in an internship or volunteer program with GVI, you will have relevant skills and experience to talk about, and you will be able to show your understanding of conservation challenges and approaches. All GVI programs are focused on impact, support and career development, so you will have a thorough knowledge of local and global issues, and sustainable approaches to conservation.

Even if you don’t find a job working with sea turtles right away, reaching out to introduce yourself is an effective way to build your professional network and put your name out there.

Take the first step in your conservation career. Contact GVI to learn more about how to work with sea turtles through impactful volunteer programs and internships.


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