Wildlife Skills Trainee Scheme
Wildlife Skills is a scheme funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund in conjunction with Somerset, Devon, Dorset and Wiltshire Wildlife Trusts to each provide four Trainees of any age or background, the opportunity to gain paid full time, real world experience and specialist training for a year. Ensuring the next generation of environmental decision makers are well equipped for the challenges of the future. Read More.
Meet the trainees:
Practical Conservation Trainee
Based at Bradford on Tone, near Taunton.
To get to know Ralph, click here.
Practical Conservation Trainee
Based at Chancellor's Farm, near Cheddar.
To get to know Leighann, click here.
Volunteer and Community Engagement Trainee
Based at Callow Rock offices.
To get to know Abi, click here.
Survey and Monitoring Trainee
Based at Taunton HQ.
To get to know Becky, click here.
Chris Couldrey - 2014 Survey and Monitoring Trainee
Although Chris began his traineeship last year, the surveying position is 18 months long and so it will not be completed until December. So he will spend the following months putting all the skills he has learnt throughout the first year in practice during the busy survey season.
To get to know Chris, click here.
Last year's trainees:
The first year of trainees have now completed their traineeships and have flown the nest!
Read below for some handy fact files about each of them, and to see what they are up to now.
Beth Aucott - Practical Conservation Trainee
"I am currently an Assistant Ranger for the National Trust working on Studland Beach, Dorset. It's a seasonal role, so only for the summer, but I am gaining new experiences and rounding out my CV. I will be getting stuck back into the practical conservation work and utilising the skills I learnt as a trainee come September when I will be moving to be an Assistant Ranger on Dunstable Downs in Bedfordshire. The team there are working on some exciting chalk grassland restoration work, which I can't wait to get involved with. The site also offers some stunning views of the surrounding countryside, though obviously not quite as good as those from on Mendip!"
Claire Critchley - Volunteer and Community Engagement Trainee
"I am now working for the RSPB as a Learning and Visitor Experience Officer. It is the perfect job for me. I teach school and youth groups on a daily basis and run events and the visitor centre when I am not out teaching. In the long term I want to stay where I am because have high hopes and big plans for the Ribble Discovery Centre some of which may take a couple of years and funding bids to bring to fruition. Undoubtedly I could not do my current job without all the skills and experience I gained in my Traineeship. The lasting legacy for me though is the friendships I have made and it is something that continues to help in my current role."
Olivia Dullaghan - Practical Conservation Trainee
"I have just finished up with the Trust after what has been a fantastic year full of learning and laughter. I have gained a huge amount including practical experience, qualifications, I.D skills and a much better understanding of landscape scale conservation. I have made some fantastic new friends who really made this experience what it was. The staff and volunteers I have worked with have been inspiring with their passion for nature and dedication to conservation. Moving forward I am hoping to work in a ranger role and feel very positive about my future career in conservation."
Here they all are talking about the highlights of the year:
The weather might have been a little damp and blustery but the first signs that spring has sprung are all around. As is tradition at this time of year all the Trainees had a bit of a spring clean as we dusted off our CV’s and spruced them up with our recently attained qualifications, and new found experience ready for the year ahead.
Another month as flown by so fast - yet again, with 2015 kicking off in the same fashion 2014 left off, with even more amazing experiences and encounters. Read on to find out more.
Our third and penultimate residential was in Wiltshire and there was a distinctly feathered theme to week! Read on to find out more.
Happy New Year to you all! I realise by the time you are all reading this even just the mere mention of a mince pie might turn your stomach but we did get very much into the festive spirit and celebrate because (scarily) its passed the halfway point for me and Beth, with Olivia not far behind and the thought that we will be leaving this amazing organisation in a few months time is starting to sink in.