Careers Info

Agriculture

Want to Work in Agriculture?
What Training Do I Need? ...read on

Recent decades have seen massive changes in agriculture, leading to (in developed countries):

  • Increased use of technology
  • Greater global competition (due to globalisation of trade)
  • More diverse agricultural product range
  • Increased environmental & health awareness (e.g. growth in organic & sustainable farming)

These and other changes have resulted in fewer traditional agricultural jobs, but there are more opportunities than ever for creative people who are well trained and experienced, and prepared to adapt to the new world of agriculture.

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Careers Advice: Developing Your Career

Most people start their working life with a preconception of where they want to work.

  • For some, they aim to own and run their own business
  • For others, they plan to enter a career path they have identified, and advance along that path to achieve an end goal that they have also identified.

In today's world, there is a big problem with both of these ideas.

That problem is simply that the world is changing so fast, that no one can predict what changes are going to happen to business opportunities and career pathways. In fact; if you start a three year course, aiming to get a job that you see is currently available; there is a good change that job might not exist; or might be very different by the time you complete your course.  Study is still important though - more so than ever -but learning needs to be broad enough to be adaptable and deep enough to be useful.

 

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Education

Education is changing in today's world.

Traditional classroom education, consisting of a teacher, blackboard and lecture may continue to exist; but that style of education is diminishing and in the future, might not dominate the education industry in the way it did over previous centuries.

If you want to work in tomorrow's world of education; you need to be more flexible, and skilled in a wider variety of delivery methods: otherwise you may be left behind.

What are the Future Opportunities?

No one can predict with certainty what might happen over coming decades; but there are trends which have started to emerge:

1. The traditional model for universities and vocational colleges is not working  (Country Life Magazine Aug 25, 2010 stated "We have too many under educated students and too many second rate universities" Traditional institutions in developed countries have been churning out graduates for years who either become unemployed; or cannot get jobs in areas related to what they studied.

2. Alternative education is expanding while traditional education is under increasing pressure.

3. Research has shown teachers in traditional schools (primary, secondary and tertiary) are increasingly stressed.

4. Research is showing that employers are placing less emphasis on qualifications, ....however, learning. knowledge and skills are still highly valued by employers

5. New opportunities continue to emerge in alternative forms of delivery. Online education is a boom industry. Production of multi media and educational vidseo is booming....but teachers in the classroom are stressed.

Forging a Career in Education

Look for opportunities that are innovative, creative and alternative

Be prepared to change who you work for and the way you work throughout your career

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Environmental

How do I get work in the Environmental field?

People are increasingly more environmentally aware and job opportunities are expanding rapidly in this and related industries. 

Despite this fact, many graduates from environmental courses can find it difficult to obtain employment.  Often this may be attributed to the type of course they have undertaken, or the level at which they have studied.  Many environmental courses also begin with general study and finish off with study in a specific and narrow field. This is important if you are to become an expert in a specialised field, but it can mean that your job opportunities become limited due to high competition between applicants for a limited number of available positions.

You can increase your chances of gaining employment however, by taking the following factors into consideration:

  • Choose a general environmental course to begin your studies as this will give you a broad foundation of environmental skills and knowledge with which to apply to your environmental employment;
  • Supplement your environmental studies with study in subject areas that will provide you with additional skills that you can use in your environmental employment such as study in management, computing and writing; and
  • Try to obtain work experience within your chosen field of employment while you are studying. This will allow you to acquire specialist skills while gaining contacts as well as valuable content for your resume.

If you seek a career in this industry, our advice is to look carefully at the courses you undertake and be prepared to embrace every opportunity to obtain valuable experience, whether paid work or voluntary.

What you can do to start on your career path to working with wildlife:

Volunteer - The best way to gain employment in this field is to have some experience behind you. Some avenues for volunteer work include: fauna sanctuaries, zoos, national parks, environmental educational centres, RSPCAs and wildlife caring to name a few.

Social Networking - there are many social networks out there that have a focus on wildlife, join one and meet like-minded people. 

Training - get relevant training experience. Some courses that might increase your chances of employment include:

Certificate in Wildlife Conservation

Advanced Certificate in Zoo Keeping

Associate Diploma in Wildlife Management

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Health and Applied Sciences

What's it like to work in Health Science or Complimentary Medicine?

The world of science is ever-changing, fast paced and gives you the opportunity to make an impact on the lives of others.  The fusion of western and traditional medicine is providing new answers to challenging health issues, and providing a variety of fulfilling new careers in health and its allied industries.

Career possibilities are numerous, depending on whether you want a clerical based position, a laboratory job or employment as a health professional.

  • Medical Research
  • Paramedic/Emergency First Responder
  • Fitness Instructor
  • Personal Trainer
  • Nutritionist
  • Natural Therapist
  • Laboratory Assistant
  • Medical Receptionist
  • Nurses Aide
  • Medical Doctor
  • Counsellor
  • Sports Therapist
  • Life Coach
  • Aromatherapist
  • Scientist
What Training Do I need to Get Started?
The requirements for health related employment will vary depending on where you live. Browse through our Health and Allied sciences articles to learn more!

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Horticulture

The horticulture industry embraces everything that involves growing plants; from gardening and landscaping to vegetable and fruit production.

In the past, horticulturists were trained and often experienced in a wide range of industry sectors; but over recent decades, they have increasingly become specialists. This, like many industries has seen great change in recent decades; and is likely to continue to change in perhaps unpredictable ways.

The best way to guarantee long term career success may be to ensure your initial training is broad based, and you have the capacity to move with relative ease from one industry sector to another as demand shifts.

Nurserymen for example, who are also competent at landscape design and tree care, may find they can move to something else far easier when an extended drought comes along and plant sales decrease dramatically.

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Hospitality

What's it like to work in Hospitality or Tourism?
What training do I need to make a start and succeed?

The hospitality industry is large and significant across a large number of countries. In some less developed countries, hospitality and tourism accounts for more than half of the economy; and this industry can also be amongst the largest of all industry sectors in many developed countries.
 
Hospitality may encompass a wide variety of career options including:


  • Take Away Food Services
  • Restaurant Operations
  • Hotel Management
  • Resorts
  • Cruise Ships
  • Other Accommodations (eg. Guesthouses, Bed and Breakfast Operations)

Note: Tourism Careers are dealt with in another section of this web site

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Information Technology

WHAT'S IT LIKE TO WORK IN THE COMPUTER INDUSTRY?
What Training is needed to be successful?


I.T. has come from nothing a few decades ago to be one of the most important industries in the world today. In it's early days it seemed there would never be an over supply of I.T. professionals; and that working in this industry would be a guarantee of big money throughout your career.

While there are still lots of career opportunities, and scope to earn very well, the situation is no longer as simple as it was originally.

To be successful in I.T. you need to have specialised skills; not just in anything, but in the areas where supply is low and demand is high.
Plenty of people graduate from I.T. diplomas and degrees with the ability to program in common languages which are decreasing in popularity -and as a result, find employment opportunities scarce (There are unemployed people with computer degrees).

If you want a good start in an I.T. career, you need to either be lucky or well informed about what is needed in the industry right now,  and then very fast in acquiring those skills, before there are more people with them than what there is work to go round.

If you want to sustain long term career success in I.T., you need to be innovative, creative, and continually striving to learn new things.

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Leisure Management

What's it like to Work in the Leisure Industry?
What Training Do I need to Succeed?


The Leisure industry is larger and more important in today's world than every before.

As the world becomes more affluent, and people have more "surplus" cash, they are able to afford to join gyms, go on holidays, pay for professionals to organize birthday parties, and buy more "toys" (not just toys for children either!)

Leisure professionals include:

*Event Managers
*Sports persons, Sports managers, etc
*Leisure facility Staff (Swimming Pools, Leisure Centres, Resorts, Health Clubs, Theme Parks etc).
*Recreation officers
*Fitness leaders, Life Coaches, Personal Trainers, Sports Coaches

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Management

What's it like to be a Manager?

How do you get to be a Manager:

 You need to show a capacity to manage whatever needs to be managed. For example: finance managers need to show they can manage finance, and personnel managers need to show they can manage personnel.
You can do this by showing a good understanding of the discipline (eg. Finance or Personnel), but that's only part of what is required. You also need to show an understanding of management theory and technique and a capacity to apply that understanding in a practical way. A qualification is a step in the right direction; but should only be considered as part of what is needed.
Many people with management degrees may struggle to develop a good track record in applying the theory. Others with no more than a management certificate, but a successful track record may well do far better in their careers.

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Marketing

What's it like to work in Sales or Marketing?
What Training is needed to Succeed?


Marketing is a broad industry that goes well beyond sales.
Careers in marketing can be concerned with:

  • Selling
  • Advertising
  • Organising product launches
  • Other PR (eg. Media releases, merchandising, web sites, etc)
  • Distribution of products or services
  • Labelling
  • Customer Service (including after sales service)
  • Processing orders

A lack of good sales and marketing staff are a weakness in many businesses; and if you develop appropriate skills in this area, your long term career opportunities and ability to earn a very good income can be relatively secure.

Despite their potential, some marketing graduates do not succeed, and may even find sustained employment difficult. It does take a certain type of personality (beyond just marketing skills) to be successful in this industry. It is important to have the ability to focus, be creative, communicate (including listening) and be outgoing and likeable.

A common fault with some marketing professionals is that they may want to set their own agenda rather than following the agenda of the business. Self confidence is necessary for anyone in marketing, but they should never assume that they are going to be better at determining how to market something than the owner or manager of a business is. 

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Media Industries

The media sector includes publishing and really includes any jobs related to the provision of news, entertainment and information. It involves outlets such as radio and television, as well as literature and online publications.

It is often a competitive field to become involved in so relevant qualifications are helpful. many roles may only be short term contracts and often work hours can be a little antisocial and unpredictable. That said, the type of work can be quite varied and is frequently stimulating. This sector has been, and continues to be, modified through advancements in technology. Newspaper publishing for instance is in decline, whereas online journalism is growing. Those of a creative bent will always find some form of enjoyable employment from this sector.    

 
Study is one of several ways people break into a publishing career. But before enrolling in a course, be sure to investigate exactly what it will give you, and be realistic about what you might achieve from it.  If possible, choose a course that gives you practical publishing experience, as that can give you an edge.

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Nutrition

What's it like to work in the Food and Nutrition Industries?
What Training Do You Need to Succeed?


Human nutrition is relevant to not only the health industry, but also food, fitness and perhaps other industry sectors.

The food that people eat, and how it is eaten, may be influenced by a wide range of vocations, for example:

  • Health food shop sales staff
  • Food Supplement Suppliers (both factories that produce supplements and people who wholesale, or directly distribute supplements)
  • Primary producers
  • Food Retailers
  • Food Processors
  • Food Service Industries (Restaurant managers, cooks, etc)
  • Fitness professionals
  • Health & Wellbeing Professionals (eg. Doctors, Naturopaths, Massage therapists, Counsellors etc)
  • Nutritional Counsellors
  • Dieticians
  • Nutrition Scientists

Opportunities exist to work in a wide range of situations in the food and nutrition industries. These provide just a glimpse at the scope of possibilities.

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Pets

The pet industry is huge; and people can spend large amounts of money not only buying but caring for pets. Consider that in developed countries, it can cost as much as half of a years wages to buy and care for a dog throughout the course of its life!

Pet industries can involve

  • Breeding and supplying pets
  • Supplying food, pharmaceuticals, cages, leashes, toys and any other good that might be associated with pets.
  • Provision of a wide variety of services, ranging from veterinary care and grooming, welfare services and boarding kennels, to training pets and pet cemeteries.

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Photography

What's it like to work in Photography?

Photography offers a wide range of employment prospects and career paths.

The industry is a dynamic one, but one that is also in the midst of upheaval as people move away from film photography and into digital photography.

Developments in digital technology have had a huge impact on the photographic industry causing many large and well established employers to reduce job numbers. At the same time, new technologies have offered small businesses and freelance photographers an opportunity to compete more strongly than ever before with larger and more established businesses and professionals.

In summary, photography offers lots of opportunity, but it is a rapidly changing industry, and to succeed, you need to stay up to date, and have the capacity to not only adapt quickly to new technology, but also be innovative in the way you apply it and the way you move your career forward.

Photographers are employed in many different types of jobs, including:

  • Photographic Salesperson
  • Photo artist
  • Wedding Photographer
  • Portrait Photographer
  • Photo Library Manager
  • Advertising Studio Photographer
  • In House Magazine or News Photographer
  • Photography Teacher/Trainer
  • Military Photographer
  • Book Illustrator

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Psychology and Counselling

What training do You need to get a job in Psychology or Counselling?

Most people who study psychology actually never become Psychologists! However, they still find that their psychological knowledge makes a huge difference in their careers.

Psychology is applied to many different types of jobs, including:

  • Counselling (e.g. Family counselling, Grief counselling,
    Conflict resolution, etc.)
  • Welfare and Social Work
  • Child Care and Education
  • Sports Coaching
  • Life Coaching
  • Personal Training
  • Rehabilitation and Health Care
  • Mental Illness
  • Scientific Research
  • Marketing and Sales
  • Personnel Management
  • Industrial Relations
  • Management
  • Leisure Industries

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Science

Careers opportunities abound in science; and yet most university graduates in science will never work in the field they study. This is sometimes because the student's interests and aspirations change over the duration of what can be a very long course; or it may be that their studies are mismatched with their opportunities. Only a small proportion of highly qualified scientists find high level, well paid employment, in their discipline, close to where they live. Others find more opportunities if they are prepared  to relocate (sometimes to another country); and others find they lack key attributes that are needed to forge a career. For those who expect to start at the top, opportunities are rarer. For those who are prepared to start at the bottom; continue training, and get actively involved in their profession beyond the workplace: opportunities can be immensely better.
]You don't need to start with a degree -in fact sometimes a certificate or diploma followed by some industry experience can be a better way of forging a long term, successful career, in science.

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Self Sufficiency

How Can You Make a Career out of Self Sufficiency?

What Training Do you need?

Many of us love the idea of living on a farm and growing our own food and wine, living the “Good Life” as was shown in the popular British comedy. But many of us may not have the means or space to do this without going to live on a smallholding.

They may wish to produce their own food, not eat that which is shipped from the other side of the globe.

Whatever the reasons a person may have for wishing to become self-sufficient, they need to recognize the state they are in mentally, physically and emotionally. People who strive for self-sufficiency require courage and determination, but they also have to move away from the moaning and self-analysis of modern life, towards a positive and can-do attitude.

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Small Business

What's it Like to Run a Small Business?

What Training Do You Need to Increase Your Chances of Success?


Small businesses are those that employ relatively small numbers of people (Definitions vary, but commonly less than 50 employees). The majority of small businesses employ the owner(s) and only 1-3 other people (often on a part time or casual basis).

Small businesses may be in any industry, for example:

  • Farms
  • Plant nurseries
  • Retail shops
  • Professional services (eg. doctors, lawyers, architects, accountants, web site developers)
  • Small factories (eg. crash repair workshops, printers, building component prefabrication)
  • Consultants
  • Domestic services (eg. lawn mowing, cleaners)
  • Tourism services (Tour company, tourism attraction)
  • Hospitality (Small hotel, Restaurant, Bed & Breakfast accommodation) 

Opportunities exist for anyone to set up a small business; but being successful in your own business is not always as easy as you might think. Apart from anything else, you often need a certain personality, and a commitment to work long hours for little return for the first year or two when establishing a new small business.

Working for someone else in a small business is often different to being employed in a larger organisation. The smaller business will rarely have the same liquidity to buffer against bad times, or offer staff increased benefits. Smaller businesses may treat staff more like people, and less like numbers; but the opportunities for advancement may be fewer.

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Student Feedback

Student Testimonials

Every year we get hundreds of emails, letters, and faxes from students. Click to find some of what they have said to us.

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Tourism

What's it Like Working in the Tourism Industry?
What Training is Needed to Get a Start?


The tourism industry is large and significant across a large number of countries.
In some less developed countries, hospitality and tourism accounts for more than half of the economy; and this industry can also be amongst the largest of all industry sectors in many developed countries.

Tourism employs people in a range of situations, including:

  • Tour Company Managers
  • Booking Agents
  • Tour Guides
  • Tour leaders
  • Activities Officers
  • Event Managers
  • Entertainers
  • Drivers (bus, limo, etc), pilots (plane, helicopter), captains (cruise ship, sightseeing boat, dive boat, ferries, etc)

Many jobs in the tourism industry are casual and part time, with work opportunities becoming strong during the tourist season, and weak in low season.
Some people work full time in this industry, but many others do this work as a supplement to another regular job.

Remuneration for many of those who work in tourism may not be particularly high, but for owner operators of small businesses, or senior staff in larger tourism businesses, a lucrative professional salary may apply.

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Wildlife Management

What's it like working with wildife?

Working in wildlife education and interpretation can be a very rewarding and inspiring career choice.

People working with wildlife always appear to ‘love’ their job even though parts of it may be physically demanding and sometimes dirty work. Being in contact with wildlife and having the opportunity to educate others on the conservation importance of these animals is for some people a dream job.

What training do I need?

In order to work in the Wildlife Education and Interpretation sector, you do not necessarily require a degree or qualification, although it does help. Many people decide they want a career change and start volunteering with wildlife parks or national parks by guiding tours or caring for wildlife. This is an excellent way to get a foot in the door and create a network of contacts within the industry.

After gaining skills and knowledge through volunteering, you may end up obtaining paid work. If you wishes to progress further once having obtained a job in this field, studying for a Certificate, Diploma, or Degree may be necessary. For example, most people working in wildlife parks have some kind of qualification in zoo keeping or wildlife handling and care.

Foundation Courses

Higher Qualifications

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Writing

What's it Really Like being a Writer?
What's needed to Succeed?


People dream about a career as a writer.

It's a wonderful dream and certainly a rewarding career; but for most the dream and reality are two different things.

As with any career, success comes through hard work, experience and being prepared to compromise and take the jobs that are offered in order to get experience. There are of course the occasional Geoffrey Archers who through luck and persistence combined with skill, manage to strike it big with their first book. For most people however who are paid to write; they begin small writing such things as occasional articles in low circulation publications or advertising content for a web site or brochure.

Here are some facts you may not be aware of regarding professional writers:

1. Most successful writers are part time writers (They hold down a part or full time job in something else and earn extra from writing).

2. The hardest thing is to get your first piece published. Editors have so much work submitted, that many will only look at work submitted by people who have already been published.

3. The most common reason why a writer does not succeed professionally, is because they refuse to compromise and write what is required by a publisher (instead, they persist with writing about what they want to write about. This can become a vicious cycle, as until they write about something they don't want to write; they don't break into the industry and get an opportunity to have their ideas considered seriously).

4. There is relatively little paid work for fiction writing, and lots of people who want to write fiction. There are far more opportunities to write things like non fiction, advertising material and web site content.

5. A commercially viable writer must not just write well, but also reasonably fast.

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