What employment sector do you work in?
How long have you had a green job for nature?
£20,000 – £25,000
Please describe the work that you do.
I work for the National Trust for Scotland (NTS), looking after six sites in North Perthshire. I am responsible for wildlife conservation across the sites, visitor engagement and woodland management. I work with groups ranging from pre-school children to junior rangers and conservation volunteers, helping to inspire and educate people about our special places.
What do you most like about your job? Any dislikes?
I love everything about my job, from my daily patrols to feeding the birds. I love being able to help people enjoy their visits to our sites, being outdoors and watching the changing seasons. I feel very lucky to be looking after trees in Big Tree Country, and particularly enjoy making charcoal from invasive species to help conserve the oak trees in our Site of Special Scientific Interest. My least favourite job is picking up poo bags… occupational hazard, I guess!
What inspired you into this career?
I was made redundant after working in theatre for thirty years, and made a spur of the moment decision to go back to university and do a part-time MSc in Wildlife & Conservation Management with SRUC. I’d been volunteering for NTS for several years, so when the opportunity arose to work locally as a part-time ranger I was delighted to be able to combine work with study. I’ve always been an environmental activist and I love to think I might be helping to make the world a better place.
Have you faced any challenges in progressing your career so far?
No, I’ve been very lucky to be able to work flexibly and study part-time, and my studies have fed into the work I do day-to-day. NTS have provided me with training opportunities like tree inspection, chainsaw maintenance and crosscutting, brush cutting and strimming, which have proved invaluable.
What education/training did you have?
My first degree in Theatre, Film and Television Studies was a very long time ago… I am currently going into my third year of my Masters in Wildlife Conservation and Management, and working on my dissertation which is on sustainable forestry.
What advice would you give to someone coming into the profession?
Get as much hands-on experience as you can – volunteer with any relevant organisation that interests you, to meet people doing the job you think you’d like to do, and to find out what interests you the most. Be prepared for long hours outdoors in all weathers and take any learning opportunity that presents itself.