EcoCareers Conference 2019 Provides Insight and Inspiration

Making a difference for wildlife and the environment can take many forms. For some students, embarking on their first internship or job search can be full of trepidation–but EcoCareers is here to help!

On February 27th and 28th, 2019, hundreds of high school and college students tuned in to the virtual National Wildlife Federation EcoCareers Conference to learn about a variety of green career choices and hear from inspiring, thoughtful sustainability professionals.

A Who’s Who of Green Professionals

Photo Credit: Camilla Simon

Speakers came from major companies, organizations, and universities as well as from innovative startups and consulting forms. The line-up included Camilla Simon (Director of HECHO: Hispanics Enjoying Camping Hunting and the Outdoors), Roian Atwood (Director of Sustainability for Wrangler/Lee Jeans), Dr. Christy Slay (Director of Technical Alignment at The Sustainability Consortium), Laura Thorne (Founder, The Environmental Career Coach), Dr. Robert Ashcraft (Executive Director of Arizona State University’s Lodestar Center), and many more.

Arts and Innovation

Closing out the first day was a special addition this year – a screening of the incredible documentary, “Point of No Return,” followed by a question and answer session with both of the film’s co-directors, Quinn Kanaly and Noel Dockstader. This engaging film has been designated as an Official Selection in film festivals around the world from the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital to international film festivals of Hawaii, Santa Barbara, Sedona, and Copenhagen. Kanaly and Dockstader are in the process of developing supplemental educational resources for K-12 and college audiences.


As 2019 is the first year that the National Wildlife Federation is hosting the annual Recyclemania Competition, in which colleges and universities across the country compete for prizes and recognition in a variety of waste management and recycling categories, we featured an engaging panel with two enterprising waste management professionals: Kate Davenport (Co-President of Eureka Recycling) and Judi Gregory (Principal Consultant for Go2Zero Strategies).

Following the conference, attendees were invited to participate in Twitter networking sessions with Thorne, Gregory, Aileen McManamon (Founder and Senior Partner of 5TSports), and Aman Singh (Editor-in-Chief and Head of Content Strategy, U.S. for Futerra), where more sector-specific career guidance was provided. Registrants were also given free access to the EcoLeaders Career Planning Tool, which walks users through five steps toward crafting an individual sustainability career plan, from self-assessment and career research to declaring an EcoMission, setting a variety of personal and professional goals, and taking steps to put the plan in action.


NWF’s EcoCareers Conference will be back next April – mark your calendars today!

Dates: April 1-2, 2020

Location: Online!


Thank you also to all the speakers and attendees for making this event an interactive, exciting, and dynamic experience for all.

See you next year!