“There is no substitute for experience. Learning from our mistakes is how we grow and become better but learning from other’s mistakes is how we become our best. There is no better opportunity for a young fisheries professional to garner mentors and soak up the experiences of seasoned fisheries professionals than through the American Fisheries Society.”
– Tom Lang, Member since 1999
Benefits of AFS Involvement
Becoming involved in the AFS is a critical step in fisheries education and pays off for students the earlier they get involved. It empowers students to develop professional competencies and cultivate relationships with scientists, managers, biologists, and policy makers throughout the world. Here are five quick reasons to get involved:
- Discover whether fisheries is right for you
- Get advice on where to attend college
- Make new friends in the Student Subsection who can introduce you to potential professors and employers
- Develop skills for your resume such as "communication skills," "leadership skills," and "teamwork skills"
- Have fun!
Only with a Society membership can you receive Fisheries magazine each month, have free access to all the journals, receive great discounts on AFS books, receive huge discounts on Annual Meeting registration, and more.
Students play a critical role in the American Fisheries Society, representing the next generation of fisheries professionals charged with conservation of aquatic ecosystems throughout the United States and the world. The path from fisheries student to professional is an exciting educational journey. It’s a time when students define their future and acquire critical skills for professional success. But navigating the educational roadmap is no easy task. We encourage AFS students to use the diverse resources at their disposal to live their professional dreams.
How do I get involved?
Students can get involved in the AFS in many ways:
- Apply for the Hutton Scholarship Program for High Schoolers - The Hutton Program can help you connect with a local fisheries professional, like a job shadow. You'll have fun while also learning whether fisheries is a good fit for you!
- Engage with the Student and Early Career Professionals Subsection of the Education Section – The Subsection is an association of AFS students and early career professionals throughout the United States and Canada. Members work closely with the Education Section to improve fisheries education and foster communication among fisheries educators, employers, students, and the public.
- Connect with your state chapter – Many states have a chapter of the AFS. Students and early career professionals give professional talks and poster presentations, run for officer positions, organize raffles and silent auctions, and write newsletters. Talk with your state chapter representative about getting involved.
- Volunteer at AFS meetings – At Annual Meetings of the AFS, students and early career professionals can assist with registration, event planning, professional presentation judging, and other tasks. Check the AFS website and look for emails from the Student Activities Committee prior to the Annual Meeting for more information.