Women on a MISSION

Meet Carol McClelland of Green Career Central

Meet Carol McClelland, PhD, Founder and Managing Editor – Green Career Central

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m the founder and managing editor of Green Career Central, a membership site to help people discover the green career that taps their passions, interests, and experience. Prior to starting this business, I wrote Your Dream Career For Dummies and several career programs to help people discover careers that work for them personally and professionally.
What do you enjoy most about your profession?
I enjoy helping people discover their passions and incorporate them in their work. It’s a powerful experience to watch people move beyond confusion and frustration into clarity, hope, and confidence regarding their career/business.
What was your vision for starting Green Career Central?
In early 2007, as I watched the green movement intensify, I realized that the more people we have devoting their work hours to tackling global warming solutions the sooner we’ll make the progress we need to make. I feel strongly that paying attention to the state of the environment is the critical issue of our generation. I knew from my work with clients over the years that those who wanted to make a difference in their career often had difficulty finding information online. I felt it was important to create a centralized location for all green career online resources. As it turns out, this goal is more important than ever because new resources are appearing very rapidly.

Tell us about the types of projects and organizations your company supports?
As a start up company, our main focus at the moment is helping our members find green careers. Primarily we work with professionals who want to transition into a green career. In addition, we are reaching out to community colleges, universities, and professional associations to offer their students and members access to the Green Career Central site.

In the future we plan to donate a percentage of our membership fees to organizations that support the oceans, forests, wildlife, and climate.

Was there a life event or incident that made you choose to support them? If so, what was it?
I can trace many of my early memories directly to my love of nature and the environment. I recall how distraught I felt when a grove of trees was removed when a local highway was widened. I remember how entranced I was in high school when I attended a lecture Jane Goodall gave at a local university. My favorite part of every summer vacation was attending the ranger talks. And the list goes on. My passion for the environment continues to be a part of my life, and now my work.

From where do you draw inspiration?
I’m inspired by the innovative actions of companies and people as they search for new ways to address the environmental crisis. Paying attention to collaborations and interdisciplinary solutions show that we must all look beyond the typical ways to make a difference. These companies may be wildlife conservationists working with local communities to find innovative ways for animals and humans to coexist in the same region. Or it may be technology companies discovering new ways to create power. New innovations around the country and the world continue to give me hope.

What one thing would you like to learn this year?
Recently I’ve started reading books by wildlife conservationists to learn more about how wildlife and their habitats are being impacted around the world. Conservationists have known for many years that habitats, and therefore animals, have been endangered by a number of factors. They know that making progress in this arena is an interdisciplinary effort. It’s interesting to discover strategies that allow wildlife populations to rebound at habitats are restored.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In addition to continuing to expand and build the Green Career Central site, I hope to contribute to wildlife conservation and habitat restoration in a more direct way.

What do you do for fun, relaxation?
I step into nature – in my neighborhood, at the beach or in the mountains – to relax. Close to home I take my goldendoodle, Aspen, out for walks in a neighborhood with oak trees that are several hundred years old. They are magnificent companions on our walks. When we are farther afield, my husband and I enjoy exploring National Parks and National Forests to see the beauty and learn about the flora and fauna of the area from the rangers. In the last few years we’ve visited Yosemite, Death Valley, Great Sand Dunes, Glacier National Park, and Gunnison National Forest.

Do you have a secret indulgence?  If so, what is it?
Homemade cheesecake with a nut crust and topped with fresh raspberries!

Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
Even if you aren’t interested in changing careers or starting a green business, you can take actions to green your own work habits. Any changes you can integrate into your work life will help. Think about the amount of paper you use, the energy you use, and the miles you drive. What changes can you make to minimize your impact on the planet?

Learn more about Carol McClelland, PhD at www.greencareercentral.com

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