GRADUATE environmentalist, Victoria Pitstra, is proving to be the envy of many of her colleagues having such a wide and varied skill set.
After leaving school, Victoria worked for a year in outdoor camps in Australia as an assistant expedition leader. She then came back to Scotland and studied Zoology at the University of Glasgow, graduating in 2006.
Degree in hand, she then started her career as a licensing manager for a brand licensing consultancy in England, looking after a portfolio of art licenses. “I sort of fell into the job in all honesty and I had a wonderful two and a half years going to trade shows and meeting all sorts of people,” said Victoria.
Realising that she wanted more, Victoria then returned to university to sit her MSc in Environmental Forensics, this time graduating in 2011 from the University of Strathclyde.
A number of temporary positions followed – including a six-month contract as a workforce manager for the Olympic and Paralympic Games based in London. It was shortly after this that Victoria landed her dream job working for Anartya in Aberdeen as an environmental consultant.
“During some leave from the Olympics, I decided to go and visit my Mum in the north of Scotland. On the way back to Glasgow I stopped to visit a friend in Aberdeen who took me to a networking event where I was introduced to Jill Rennie, environmental director at Anartya,” said Victoria.
This chance meeting left a huge impression, as Rennie explained: “We always knew it was going to be tough to find the right person as we had such a varied list of skills we needed the person to have.
“We were so fortunate to meet Victoria as at last we had found the person who met all our criteria and so we didn’t hesitate to offer her the job”.
Having had time to settle in, Victoria is thoroughly enjoying her new role at Anartya.
“Everyone is lovely and I’m so fortunate as I am getting to do bits of everything. Right now, I’m helping to put together a new environmental training course plus I’m getting involved in the marketing and social media side of the business as well.”
Victoria is well aware that her last minute decision to attend the networking event changed her future. “It just proves that to get on you need to get out there, speak to your friends, use your contacts and don’t be shy to ask questions.”