The first five years of your career are extremely important. At one end, you're transitioning from graduation into your first role and trying to find your footing in the sector. As you become more experienced, you'll be looking to expand your professional network, get recognised, and further your career.
At IFST, we realise how crucial these first five years are, which is why we've created a New Professionals section to bring you tailored content.
Keep up-to-date on the latest developments with Food Science and Technology
Access technical knowledge through our International Journal of Food Science and Technology or purchase one of our guides at a discounted rate
Explore and learn about unfamiliar territories or refresh your memory through our Information Statements
Browse the latest food events
IFST Member Guy Moreton, Director of recruitment company MorePeople, gives advice on Managing your career
If you're closer to the end of your first five years, you may be eligible for one of the Science Council registers, most likely Registered Science Technician (RSciTech) or Registered Scientist (RSci). A Science Council Register awarded by IFST is an internationally-recognised and trusted award in the food sector. It is an independent measure of your skills, knowledge and professionalism that demonstrates to employers and colleagues know that you meet a high level of standards.
At some point in your later five years, you may also be eligible for Membership. Being a Member of IFST is a sign that you are now established as a food professional and you are dedicated to advancing the profession through the high standards, skills and knowledge that you possess. It's free to upgrade your membership, you'll just pay your new rate in the next subscription year.
If you need advice, IFST will help you through the application process if you think that you may be eligible.
Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
Learning doesn't end at college/university. It's important that you continue to learn throughout your entire career so that you can perform to the best of your ability. In the first few years after graduation, you may find that you want to enhance certain skills or get training in certain areas. This may seem simple in principle but actually finding the opportunities to fulfill your wants can be difficult. IFST can support your Continuing Professional Development (CPD)...by helping you plan your CPD, is the means by which professionals maintain, improve and broaden their knowledge and skills and develop the personal qualities and competencies required in their working lives.
The majority of our professional registers and upgrading to Member require that you have a record of at least one year of CPD. Start planning, recording, and reflecting (see 5 steps to perfect CPD) now to prepare for when you are ready to upgrade to Member or apply for a professional register. The easiest way to record CPD is through our online CPD recording system, myCPD, which members can access for only £20 a year (if you're on a professional register, it's free).