The Field Studies Council Youth Council is a group of twelve proactive young naturalists aged 16-25 from across the UK helping to steer Field Studies Council engagement and content. They act as representatives for other young people who engage with the charity.
The Field Studies Council is committed to increasing youth engagement in nature through a series of face-to-face and online courses, subsidies, projects, camps, publications, and scholarships.
We welcome applications from all young people regardless of your experience or background. Please note that this is a voluntary role.
The application process asks you two main questions that help us to understand who you are and how you would like to help youth engagement within the Field Studies Council:
- Please tell us a bit about yourself, your experiences and the environmental topics that you are passionate about. (Max 200 words).
Ideas for answers: How do you connect with the outdoors, do you have any other volunteer roles, do you create any content such as videos or blogs.
- Why would you like to join the Field Studies Council Youth Council? (Max 300 words)
Ideas for answers: What changes would you like to help with, why do you want to be a voice and representative for young people, what do you hope to gain during your time on the council.
If you find answering online forms difficult and would rather talk through and answer the application questions please contact [email protected] with your contact phone number and availability to call.
Some people find it easier to write their answers to the above questions on Microsoft Word or Google Docs and paste the answers into the application form.
Applications open on the 29th of August 2023 and they will close on the 10th of October 2023 at 11:00pm. You will hear by the end of October regarding the outcome of your application.
The 2023/2024 Youth Council team will be in post from the 1st of November 2023 to the 30th of October 2024. This is a voluntary role.
Before applying, please note the four dates below for the online meetings that all council members are expected to attend.
Four online meeting dates all members are expected to attend
- Tuesday 7th November 2023, 6-7:30pm
- Tuesday 16th January 2024, 6-7:30pm
- Tuesday 5th March 2024, 6-7:30pm
- Tuesday 18th June 2024, 6-7:30pm
What’s in it for me?
As a Youth Council member, you will gain an insight into the workings of one of the UK’s leading environmental education charities. Members of the Youth Council are key members of the Field Studies Council, who get to engage in high-level discussions about the organisation’s provision for young people.
You will also meet other young naturalists and environmentalists throughout your term on the Council.
In addition, there will be:
- Chances to attend training opportunities, including heavily subsidised Biodiversity Courses (online and in-person).
- Opportunities to gain valuable transferable skills, including meeting skills (such as chairing meetings and minute-taking), decision-making, and influence within the environmental education sector.
- Opportunities to create content such as blog posts for sharing on Field Studies Council channels as well as your own channels.
”It is a fantastic opportunity to help influence projects, making them more appealing and accessible to young people. I also feel young people are not aware of the FSC and the valuable projects and programs they provide and how young people could benefit from such as the wide variety of educational camps and the valuable skills they can learn from these.”Joe P (20)
Being a 2023/2024 member of the youth council
The 2023/2024 Youth Council team will be in post from the 1st of November 2023 to the 30th of October 2024. If you are successful in your application there will be four online meetings a year that all members will be expected to attend along with an online training session. Outside of these four mandatory meetings, there will be regular meetings for projects depending on your interests and needs of the Field Studies Council.
What are the meetings for?
The Youth Council meet online to:
- Discuss and evaluate Field Studies Council courses and campaigns, ensuring they are relevant to what young people need/want.
- Discuss and implement actions on increasing engagement and diversity.
- Provide a youth perspective on Field Studies Council projects.
- Provide a youth perspective on the Young Darwin Scholarship.
Every Youth Council member is encouraged to attend at least one free Biodiversity training course during their time on the Council, which will inform their role.
The Youth Council is what you make of it and there will be plenty of opportunities to expand your skills and experiences in your areas of interest.
This is a voluntary role.
Watch the video below created by Field Studies Council higher education placement students to learn a bit more about how the Youth Council runs:
What has the Youth Council achieved since 2021?
- Input on the content of the Young Darwin Scholarship.
- Reviewed the Young Darwin Scholarship application process to ensure the scholarship remains inclusive and relevant to young people.
- Chaired an online debate during CoP26 titled ”Is planting trees the best way to solve a climate crisis?”
- Represented the youth voice on Radio Shropshire.
- Input on the Field Studies Council’s new range of climate change ambassador courses.
- Created engaging content for social media and influenced the marketing teams to try innovative ideas.
- Discussed the need for more youth-led research at the Open University.
- Proposed solutions for the challenges faced regarding youth engagement with the Field Studies Council staff and trustees.
- Raised overall awareness in the charity for the need to consider young people when developing courses and projects.
”I strongly feel that I wouldn’t have chosen to study Biology at University or have the job I do today, without the FSC. Joining the Youth Council is now a fantastic opportunity to ensure that other young people can have access to the same positive experiences that I have.”Liv C (24)
How has youth engagement increased in the Field Studies Council since the Youth Council was established?
- The Young Darwin Scholarship saw a five-fold increase in applications.
- Young people are getting in touch about what opportunities the Field Studies Council can provide for them.
- Young people attended the CoP26 debate giving them another platform for their voices to be heard.
- Nearly 600 young people attended a Field Studies Council natural history course in 2021, subsidised through the Generation Green project.
- Overall followers on Instagram have increased significantly and Tik-Tok followers are growing.
The Council ensures all young people have the option to increase their environmental knowledge, connect more with nature and explore environmental career paths and volunteering opportunities through the Field Studies Council.
If you have any questions about the Youth Council, please email [email protected]