In one of our recent Articles, we discussed about How to be a Marine Biologist the Right Way and today we’ll try to focus on Why marine Biologist is not a Good Career Option.
Becoming a marine biologist has both advantages and disadvantages. Some of the drawbacks include the potential impact of global warming on the oceans, the competitive nature of the job market, and the high cost of living in coastal areas where marine biologists often work.
On the other hand, the field offers diverse career opportunities, hands-on experience, and the chance to make a positive environmental impact.
Is it still worth it to become a marine biologist in the future?
1. Intense competition in Marine Biologist
The first reason is intense competition, with many individuals interested in the field leading to a high number of applicants for limited jobs. To distinguish oneself, unpaid volunteer work is often necessary, including during undergraduate and master’s studies.
Furthermore, marine biologists may often work longer hours than what’s in their contract and not be compensated for it, leading to difficulty in maintaining a work-life balance.
These challenges result from both external factors and the competitive nature of the field, making it essential for individuals to effectively manage their workload and prioritize self-care.
2. Challenges of Maintaining a Work-life balance and financial stability
Challenges of maintaining a work-life balance and financial stability in the field. Marine biology requires long hours and a significant amount of mental preparation to deal with the unpredictability of research projects and funding.
One’s partner must be understanding of these demands, and individuals should surround themselves with mentally stable colleagues. The lack of funding and instability are significant issues in marine biology, with researchers needing to constantly apply for funding to continue their projects and support their salaries.
These challenges are particularly acute in the early stages of one’s career and may require considerable flexibility and mobility. While some individuals may thrive on this lifestyle, others may find it challenging to balance their personal and professional lives.
3. Potential downsides of the Job as a Marine Biologist
Potential downsides of the job for those who are not fond of long-term projects and the challenges it presents, such as hard work, passion, and flexibility. Marine biology has many pros, including the love of the ocean, learning opportunities, and adventure.
However, for those who are discouraged by these cons, don’t be.
A Redditor said, I would say yes but I had a very hard time (impossible, actually) finding a job out of college. I went to grad school and got a masters and still had a hard time finding a job. I eventually went into teaching high school science.
I highly suggest doing a 5-year masters program and even possibly go straight for a PhD. A college degree won’t even get you a call back for an interview (not in the New England area at least).
Definitely have a back-up plan like, administration or education or business so you can incorporate your love for marine bio into a career that actually makes some money. Not that money is the most important thing but it is an important part of a career.
Make lots of connections with professors, fisherman, harbormasters, etc. Get your foot in the door early, possibly with an unpaid internship early on in your college career.
But it can also be depressing too! I worked on my masters for 2.5 years studying horseshoe crabs, came up with some great models/ideas/suggestions for conserving the species, presented my findings to the state org in charge of regulations and they said “Great Work!” and then proceeded to tell me that none of it was ever going to happen, despite being feasible, so there’s always that…
I’d be more worried about the lack or jobs/stable hours/seasonality/sources of funding of being a marine biologist before the bleakness of it all. Make sure your dream job in your dream location exists before moving forward, and proceed with caution!
Check out this sub-reddit for more,
Ultimately, whether a career in marine biology is a good option depends on an individual’s passion for the field and their willingness to navigate its challenges.
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