Careers

The Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, in partnership with the College of Agriculture and Purdue Center for Career Opportunities, is dedicated to providing and/or connecting students to resources to help them best prepare to compete for jobs upon graduation. Several services are available to help students write résumés and cover letters, prepare for interviews, develop job search techniques, find semester and summer internships, identify employment opportunities after graduation, and more.

Need help getting started? Review the FNR Four-Year Career Plan for guidance on career preparation activities that students should be completing, organized by their year in college. You may also visit our Office of Student Services (OSS) in Room G003 of Pfendler Hall.

For a compilation of raw data reported by our graduates on position placement, view Placement for May Undergraduate Students.

Student shaking hands with employer at FNR Career Fair.
FNR Career Fair
The Department of Forestry and Natural Resources , is dedicated to providing and/or connecting students to resources to help them best prepare to compete for jobs upon graduation.

Student conducting ecosystem health check by studying the water, holding glass cup with tadpoles.
Career opportunities
Are you looking for an outdoor career? Purdue FNR is one of the nation's leading natural resource programs. Our world-class expertise in forestry, wildlife, fisheries & aquatic sciences, natural resources social science, and interdisciplinary ecology is helping solve some of the most important natural resource problems around the globe. 
Todd Atwood checking the health of polar bear, receives FNR alumni award for his lead in USGS Polar Bear Research Program.
FNR Job Board
Students have many opportunities for internships, summer positions and after graduation career positions posted from our stakeholders and partners which post current positions on our actively visited job board.
Student Kendra Huff in mountains with forest.
Scholarships
Opportunities for scholarships in FNR are available in all majors. One in four students receive scholarships with over $80,000 monies received.
Students in the Society of American Foresters student organization at the STIHL Timbersports competition.
Networking
Student organizations will expand your college experience, helping you build a personal network with Purdue FNR peers, industry professionals and alumni.

Career Resources

While there are limitless careers in the field of natural resources, view our career profiles which highlights some of the career opportunities available to you.

Professional Organizations assist you in your career exploration as you decide coursework, student organizations, internships and research projects.

Each of the majors in the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources is tied to a professional organization. The following websites may provide further career exploration, view the following areas on these sites:

  • Career – is there additional information about careers on this site that may be helpful to your research?​​​​​​​
  • Professional development – are certifications or licenses offered through the organization?
  • Job board – does the organization offer a job board with career related postings?
The three organizations associated with the field biology majors are: Additional, related professional organizations:

Related Skills opens opportunities as employers are seeking candidates with the attributes listed.

In addition to academic training, employers are looking for the following attributes (National Association of Colleges and Employers Job Outlo​ok​ 2015). As you seek out internships, volunteer opportunities and career options, it is important to find ways to learn and/or build these skillsets:

  • Analytical/Quantitative Skills
  • Communication Skills (Written and Oral)
  • Computer Skills
  • Creativity
  • Detail Oriented
  • Entrepreneurial Skills/Risk Taker
  • Flexibility/Adaptability
  • Friendly Outgoing Initiative
  • Natural Resource Supervisors
  • Interpersonal Skills (relates well to others)
  • Leadership
  • Plan, Organize, Prioritize
  • Problem Solving
  • Strategic Planning
  • Tactfulness
  • Teamwork
  • Technical Knowledge
  • Work Ethic

Personal Assessment can help as you narrow down your skills and interests. Take a look at these resources that help you find the career that fits you.

If you are finding that none of the career options or job postings you have reviewed are interesting maybe it is time for some personal assessment of your skills and interests. The Center for Career Opportunities​​ can assist with further career counseling. Below are a few sites that may be helpful as you assess where your interests and skills align with career options.

If you should have any further questions or if you would like personal assistance please contact our Office of Student Services. Contact information is in the "Contact Us" tab.

Spend some time reviewing natural resource job boards, click through the links to explore the various job openings. Some questions to ask as you review:

  • What does someone in this position do on a daily basis?
  • ​Is the location of the position somewhere I would like to live?
  • ​What are the education requirements for the position?
  • ​​Are there additional certifications or licenses required?
  • ​​What is the salary for the position? Will this salary meet my financial goals?
  • ​​What is the working environment (physical demands, travel requirements, shift work)?
  • ​​Does this position meet my future goals and family plans?
  • ​Does this position interest me?

​The job boards with the widest variety of postings are:

Choose what works best for you!

The FNR Office of Student Services is open from 8 am to noon and 1 to 5 pm, Monday through Friday, except on University holidays.

Tami Conn
Tami Conn, Administrative Assistant
Phone: 765-494-3591
Email: tconn@purdue.edu

Casey Doten
Casey Doten, Alumni Relations
Scholarship & Awards Coordinator
Phone: 765-494-0428
Email: cdoten@purdue.edu

Dr. Barny Dunning
Barny Dunning
Professor & Director OSS
Phone: 765-494-3565
Email: jdunning@purdue.edu

Jackie Getzin
Jackie Getson, Interim Graduate
Program Coordinator (Current Students),
Research Associate & Outreach Coordinator
Phone: 765-496-7406
Email: jgetson@purdue.edu

Megan Gunn
Megan Gunn, Recruitment and
Outreach Specialist
Phone: 765-494-7477
Email: mlgunn@purdue.edu

Maria Leatherwood
Maria Leatherwood
Sr. Academic Advisor and Interim Graduate
Program Coordinator (Prospective Students)
Phone: 765-496-4819
Email: meleathe@purdue.edu

Julie Pluimer
Julie Pluimer, Sr. Academic Advisor &
Administrative Manager
Phone: 765-494-3629
Email: jpluimer@purdue.edu
Woods on Wheels travel exhibit sharing Purdue FNR career options.

Alumna Hits the Road with Woods on Wheels Exhibit

There are nearly 5 million acres of woodlands in Indiana with an economic impact of more than $10 billion and supports 70,000 jobs.

Alumna shares her role as she travels the state
Austin Huff, BS 2017, Bartlett arborist representative in Grand Rapids, MI.

Alumni Put FNR Experience to Work

Purdue FNR alumni are utilizing their education and expertise across the globe.

Full story

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