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Will the influx of students interested in majoring in a form of marine science make it harder for me to get a career once I graduate?

A lot of people I know are going to college for a form of marine science, like #marine-biology. Is it already a competitive career? And will it become more competitive? #marine-science #career #biology


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Victor’s Answer

Yes, I think it will become more difficult. Even right now the situation is difficult for many marine scientists, especially those who don’t necessarily want to be working in research or academia. Another thing to take into account is that this is a field where most people put passion over the amount of money that they earn; you very likely won’t become wealthy with this type of career. Courtney’s answer was excellent, but I believe it’s also important to point out that many internships available for undergrads are unpaid and usually don’t provide housing, which is why a good alternative is to try and find research that you can do during the school year, ideally at your institute. Depending on your goals, it’s good to have some research experience, regardless of whether you want to eventually obtain a higher degree, as you can find out whether or not you’d enjoy it and therefore enjoy working as a scientist.

There are some summer internships that are worth applying for, such as REU’s (research experience for undergraduates) that focus on different research topics at different institutions, but those are extremely competitive. Something I also noticed after graduating is that many job boards will advertise really great conservation programs to work at in different countries, but the problem is that these programs tend to have participants actually pay to work on those projects, which is very disheartening when you want to make a living in the field.

Overall, delving into the field of marine science can be fun, but being as realistic as possible, it will likely be difficult to get meaningful employment due to high numbers of qualified and over-qualified applicants applying for the same jobs. However, if you really feel passionate about the field, then I encourage you to pursue it. It may be difficult, but even now I still feel I made the right decision.

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Courtney’s Answer

While there is a lot of competition in the field of marine science, there are also many routes one can take with this degree. The two biggest factors for students to stick-out in competitive fields are, a) prepare for success, and b) be unique.

A) In order to set yourself up for success, take advantage of opportunities in your undergraduate years. Apply for internships and research positions in order to gain experience. Talk to your instructors about opportunities, they know more about the school and their colleagues than you would expect. And start networking early by emailing professors you may not have taken yet if you have an interest in their research. All these are simple ways to get started.

B) When you start school you'll learn about interest you may have never known about! Marine science isn't just about turtles and. whales. There is a huge variety of "little things" that have yet to be studied and species that are still unidentified. Topics in pathology, conservation, physiology, phylogenic relationships, evolutions, and even medicine can all be intersected with the marine science field. While some areas and job positions may be more competitive, if you can produce strong work and set yourself apart you'll be a strong competitor.


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Chuck’s Answer

It is very hard to get a job in marine Biology. However, the number of students interested and majoring in this field of biology, help you in several ways. First, networking with your peers and second, general funding for research, survey and restoration projects. you can find internships at the end of your college career, which dramatically improves your 'chances' of advancing. Good luck!


-Chuck

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Ken’s Answer

Your success in marine science is all about your preparation. The most important factors are working hard to get the best grades possible, positioning yourself in the field in an application that suites your personality traits, and developing networking support that will allow you to follow your dreams into this area. Below are some tips from my many years in Human Resources.


Getting to know yourself and how your personality traits relate to people involved in various career opportunities is very important in your decision making process. During my many years in Human Resources and College Recruiting, I ran across too many students who had skipped this very important step and ended up in a job situation which for which they were not well suited. Selecting a career area is like buying a pair of shoes. First you have to be properly fitted for the correct size, and then you need to try on and walk in the various shoe options to determine which is fits the best and is most comfortable for you to wear. Following are some important steps which I developed during my career which have been helpful to many .

Ken recommends the following next steps:

The first step is to take an interest and aptitude test and have it interpreted by your school counselor to see if you share the personality traits necessary to enter the field. You might want to do this again upon entry into college, as the interpretation might differ slightly due to the course offering of the school. However, do not wait until entering college, as the information from the test will help to determine the courses that you take in high school. Too many students, due to poor planning, end up paying for courses in college which they could have taken for free in high school.
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Next, when you have the results of the testing, talk to the person at your high school and college who tracks and works with graduates to arrange to talk to, visit, and possibly shadow people doing what you think that you might want to do, so that you can get know what they are doing and how they got there. Here are some tips: ## http://www.wikihow.com/Network ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/nonawkward-ways-to-start-and-end-networking-conversations ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/4-questions-to-ask-your-network-besides-can-you-get-me-a-job?ref=carousel-slide-1 ##
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Locate and attend meetings of professional associations to which people who are doing what you think that you want to do belong, so that you can get their advice. These associations may offer or know of intern, coop, shadowing, and scholarship opportunities. These associations are the means whereby the professionals keep abreast of their career area following college and advance in their career. You can locate them by asking your school academic advisor, favorite teachers, and the reference librarian at your local library. Here are some tips: ## https://www.careeronestop.org/BusinessCenter/Toolkit/find-professional-associations.aspx?&frd=true ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/9-tips-for-navigating-your-first-networking-event ##
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It is very important to express your appreciation to those who help you along the way to be able to continue to receive helpful information and to create important networking contacts along the way. Here are some good tips: ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/the-informational-interview-thank-you-note-smart-people-know-to-send?ref=recently-published-2 ## ## https://www.themuse.com/advice/3-tips-for-writing-a-thank-you-note-thatll-make-you-look-like-the-best-candidate-alive?bsft_eid=7e230cba-a92f-4ec7-8ca3-2f50c8fc9c3c&bsft_pid=d08b95c2-bc8f-4eae-8618-d0826841a284&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=daily_20171020&utm_source=blueshift&utm_content=daily_20171020&bsft_clkid=edfe52ae-9e40-4d90-8e6a-e0bb76116570&bsft_uid=54658fa1-0090-41fd-b88c-20a86c513a6c&bsft_mid=214115cb-cca2-4aec-aa86-92a31d371185&bsft_pp=2 ##
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Antonio’s Answer

No, it doesn't.


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