“This is a hands-on course with heart and muscle. And breath. Dr. Mark Johnson delivers everything he promises and even more in the way of inspiration. I attended as a non-professional with a biology background and appreciated every lecture/discussion and lab. Mark leads with creativity and enthusiasm but also knows when to let attendees experience the uncertainties inherent in learning curves. He’s great with all animals, four-legged and two.” - Kris Ellingsen, January 2012.See more testimonials from GWR students »
How to Find Work and Succeed
If You Want A Wildlife Job
NOTE: I teach hundreds of university students every year and many are struggling with finding work within the wildlife profession or veterinary profession, or just trying to figure out what to do with their lives. My courses are unique and my advice for them is unique. Here is my advice for those who are struggling.
I wish for you clarity, joy, success, and abundance. Dr. Mark
It feels like it’s a struggle to find wildlife jobs. Everyone says it is hard to find a good job out there and the competition is tough. Don’t buy it. You have everything within you to find and gather all you wish for.
There are times to follow your head, times to follow your heart, and always follow your Deeper Self.
Follow your head to attend to the details like getting your Bachelor’s degree, then Master’s, then PhD if that is what you are pursuing. Use your head to learn about all the amazing possibilities and places for work like studying primates in Madagascar, or deer in the Rockies, or manatees in Florida, or tropical birds in Costa Rica. Learn about the diverse specialties such as the ecology of medicinal plants, or bat diseases, or toxicology, or epidemiology for zoonotic diseases. Learn who the leaders are in your area of interest, study their work, and get to know them.
Remember to also follow your Heart. Strive to do what gives you joy. Give yourself permission to do what gives you joy. Go to the Wildlife Society state chapter meetings and learn what people are doing and what excites you. It is a great informal way of meeting others.
A powerful way to become a unique professional is instead of picking your favorite dream, pick your favorite two, then put them together (no matter what they are) and you will produce a profoundly unique expertise. This can give you an edge on the job market.
Here is another way to follow your heart: Gather a variety of wildlife journals from the library, take them home, put on soft music, have a warm cup of tea and page through the journals without getting lost in the details. Find out (feel) what catches your heart for species, research topics, and places in the world. Follow those leads and have fun along the way.
Don’t know what you want to do?
“Go within or go without” (Neal Donald Walsch).
I believe that we have all of the answers deep inside us. Here is where we follow our Deeper Self. We know what type of work would create our greatest joy and abundance and lead to our greatest success and our greatest self. Meditation will help answer your deepest questions but their are many ways to get quiet and learn who you are. Find ways to be quiet that work for you. Being in Nature is one of the strongest ways other than meditation. But there is also yoga, go to the gym, play tennis or golf, train in martial arts. To find these answers empty your mind and listen. Read from people like Eckharte Tolle and Neale Donald Walsch and so many others. Slow down and meditate. You have all of the answers inside you.
Our culture convinces us to base everything on what you are thinking. It is crazy but there is a Knowing that is separate from your thoughts. Our culture also convinces us to look OUT THERE. All of your searching has been outside of you and if it is not working then go within. That is where it starts.
We are attracting everything we are asking for whether we know it or not. It all starts from us. Often our negative stories and fears are doing the manifesting. There are no jobs. I can’t do it. I am sick all of the time. If those are your beliefs, you will attract exactly that. Learn how to change that. Positive convictions and a quiet mind will strengthen your ability to manifest what you want so you don’t have to chase after them as hard. To learn this, listen to teachers like Depak Chopra and Wayne Dyer.
Do You Want Wildlife Handling Experience?
If you want some wildlife handling experience, learn who is doing research and management in your area such as state fish and game, wildlife refuges, USGS, and private non-profits. Go to state chapter meetings of the Wildlife Society and get to know the people. Visit them and be persistent but respectful. Ask and listen. Ask them which research is the most exciting for them and what they enjoy most. Bring out their stories. If you leave with them feeling good about themselves you have provided a gift as well as a future open door. Find out what research involves animal handling and slowly learn when it might happen. Ask if you can participate and when you do, work hard to make their life easier that day. When you volunteer, it should not be about you. It should be about helping them as much as possible.
Our greatest success will come from consciously developing our mind, body, and Spirit as we pursue our profession.