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In honour of International Women’s Day tomorrow we chatted with five of the talented women at Ocean Wise for their advice and insights on working in the industry.  

In this blog we’re highlighting one of our creative Ocean Wise Communications Specialists, Cayley Elcombe!

How did you come to work in ocean conservation?

I’ve always loved the ocean and knew that I wanted to be involved in ocean conservation as a career in some capacity. I’ve bounced around from getting a degree in Biology, to working in corporate marketing and communications, to participating in the Ocean Bridge program, to helping facilitate a program for young conservation professionals (Ocean Pathways). Every experience was different, meaningful, and helped me figure out where I wanted to be!

What have you learned in your role so far that has surprised you?

Probably that I wasn’t the only one with a unique background! Everyone has their own journey to get to where they are and I find it pretty neat to learn about other peoples’ experiences getting into ocean conservation.

Do you have any tips for staying positive and managing eco-anxiety?

I definitely feel eco-anxiety. It is sometimes a real challenge to move past. It helps me to talk to others in the ocean conservation or climate space, and it also makes me feel better to take my own action, whether it’s remembering to bring my reusable bag to the store or doing a Shoreline Cleanup. Collective action makes an impact! 

Do you have any advice for people looking to get into the field?

I wish I had known that there are so many career paths in ocean conservation! Whatever skillset or specific interest you have, there is a path for you, you just have to find it. There are ocean-related jobs in areas like finance, partner relations, IT and communications, just to name a few – not just in research! The best advice I can give is to try different experiences and don’t be afraid to connect with people in the industry, whether in person, through work or volunteering, or on social media. Finally, I have to plug the Ocean Bridge, Ocean Pathways and Youth to Sea programs – they are extremely valuable experiences to have when trying to get into this field as a young person!

What is the most rewarding aspect of working in ocean conservation?

Every time I see the ocean, it’s really rewarding to know that I’m doing my small part in caring for it!

Read the rest of our International Women’s Day Interview’s Here:

Posted March 6, 2024 by Kim Bricker

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