Finding The "Dream Job" Through Passion Projects
Forget iPhones and tablets – growing up, I refused to put down National Geographic. Each mesmerizing photo essay took my mind globe-trotting and I developed an insatiable desire to explore ecology, humanity and all the nuanced relationships in between.
But instead of escaping into the pages, I grew from them. When I was old enough to travel independently, I opted out of the all-inclusive relaxation mentality, and went all in on exploring with a purpose. I could leave a lasting and positive impact on the places I visited – why not help?
Along the way, I photographed everything. Each place and person, no matter the language, culture or custom, had a story to share. I traveled to Cuba to release Cuban crocodiles back into the wild, to Rwanda to work with a nonprofit focused on lifting impoverished communities above their circumstances through economic opportunity and food security projects, and then to Brazil where I worked with local children to build suspended gardens.
Then, almost by accident, I built a small community of followers online.
Around the same time, I organized a GoodTravels event benefiting Global Wildlife Conservation, where we called upon speakers from Global Wildlife Conservation, Travel Channel, and Women’s Global Empowerment Fund — a network of powerful and inspiring individuals, all of whom I’d met at some point in my journey as a photographer and content creator striving for purpose. Connecting these people with audiences back home caused a “lightbulb” moment asI felt the enthusiasm and excitement from attendees. Immediately, I knew I had to harness this energy and help people help the world.
So, I co-founded GoodTravels: an ecotourism company focused on meaningful experiences through mindful travel and sustainability, with a hope to empower our attendees to use travel as a tool for positive social and environmental impact. I wanted my community to join me on my adventures.
My work with GoodTravels eventually led me back to the Global Wildlife Conversation, where I was offered my dream job working with travel ambassadors to do good around the world while satisfying peoples’ boundless urges to experience dream destinations in completely unique ways. I’m now teaching people what I’d learned to do by instinct years ago: how to help heartfelt causes while wading into the unknown, ready for the next adventure.