I was a young Nigerian girl in Lagos. Tired and extremely frustrated from applying for countless scholarships to universities. I was in my own world, blind to what was going on around me or the plight of others. It was in this unpalatable state that I stumbled on African Leadership University. It was like an answer to my prayers, and like the countless other answers I had encountered, I applied, got admitted, and received a scholarship. There was something different about this scholarship offer. It was a conservation scholarship.
I was genuinely intrigued, and although it was not my first time hearing the word, conservation, it was the first time I decided to be intentional about considering it as something I wanted to pursue in the future. Contrary to how confident I sounded in my application, I practically had no idea what conservation was about or what it truly entailed. To present a compelling application, I had to do an immense amount of research. Looking back, it was a good idea because, through this research, I discovered a distinct approach to life. I found a whole new meaning to life and began to question many decisions in my life.
I discovered an everyday reality: the world is changing, with alarming environmental changes, some of which are erosion, soil biodiversity loss, landslides, desertification, flooding, and extinction of crucial species; the quest to become more sustainable is more emphasized than ever before. Discussions are now centering on becoming more sustainable in the use of animals, plants, and in changing disposal habits. Climate change has proven to have disastrous effects on our environment and lives. For example, Madagascar is currently experiencing severe drought and floods, the cause of which is climate change. Parts of Northern Kenya are also experiencing the same affecting both people and wildlife Another potent example of the despairing effects of global warming is the recent wildfires in California. All these undoubtedly underscore the importance of conservation and conservation-related efforts to ensure the continuity of the planet we call home.
Let’s get to the root of the matter.
Why should you, who is and could be doing a billion or zillion other things, consider a career in conservation?
Make Money whilst doing Good
Well, if everything I’ve said earlier didn’t quite touch your soul, I could tell you that one good reason why you should consider jumping on this wagon is … wait for it, yes, Money. Gone are the days when conservation opportunities required helping in donations and aid. The more significant parts are sustainable and have a huge potential to create wealth, ecotourism, carbon, hunting, forest products, wildlife ranching. Are you looking for something to invest in with a massive revenue potential? Or are you looking for a career with enormous potential for returns? If so, you might want to stop by the conservation cubicle.
Follow your Passion while Making a Difference
Another factor that makes a career in conservation so appealing is
because it aids fluid transfer of skills. Contrary to what you might
think, a conservation job does not require you to learn entirely new
skills or get rid of your current skill set. Most conservation jobs
require transferable skills, and your current skillset might just be all
you need with little or no improvement. For example, when I applied for
the scholarship, I did not particularly have what you might term
conservation skills in my arsenal. The only knowledge I had was from
high school, but one thing I’ve noted is that conservation gives you the
space to know yourself and grow. All I knew how to do was write, and I
struggled a bit, thinking I had to do something distinct and field-like.
But I quickly discovered that for every passion, there is always a
related career opportunity in conservation. Did I have to learn
something new? Not really. I only had to tune my writing to
conservation-related subjects, which did not require much effort. I am
also looking to blogging in the future. So what do you love doing?
Taking pictures, writing, music, acting. There is a space for you in
conservation. You don’t need to give it much thought or limit yourself.
What could help you is an outstanding school that fosters critical
thinking, innovation, and creativity while equipping you with leadership
skills. Start here!
A Starting Point to your Life's Journey
Putting aside all the other previous reasons. So you are not passionate,
don’t know what you are doing, and have no experience in conservation.
But like the young me, you are genuinely curious, thirsty for something
new, at a turning point in your life, or looking to make an impact on
yourself and the world around you, no matter how big or small. If any or
all of these sound like you, then not only is a career in conservation
for you, but African Leadership University’s School of Wildlife
Conservation is the answer you seek. Perhaps not the entire answer, but
definitely a step in the right direction. Why don’t you take a chance
today and explore? Don’t let the what-ifs torment you later. Dive in and
discover. Try something different today!
The ALU School of Wildlife Conservation is the first of its kind on the continent, dedicated to growing the next generation of world class conservation leaders in Africa.
The continent needs home grown African leaders to spearhead new and innovative approaches in the business of conservation.