Still struggling to map out your career? It’s time to find your bearings…
If you don’t grimace at poorly-written puns, and get terribly passionate about things like plate tectonics, population density and topography, finding a career that combines your love of geographical features with a viable day job could be your key to career happiness.
But there’s more to geography than being cautiously concerned about climate change and laughing awkwardly at terrible jokes about fjords. To prove it, here are some of the top jobs for geography lovers:
Want to work with legends every day? We’ve got this…
From the earliest paintings made by prehistoric cave dwellers to detailed maps of ancient nations, people have used maps to find their way and record unchartered and mysterious lands for thousands of years.
And whilst there may be few unchartered and mysterious lands left to discover (way to go Magellan), a Cartographer’s job is no less important today. Just ask anyone who’s ever been stuck half-way up Scafell Pike without an Ordnance Survey map to hand.
Nowadays, Cartographers mainly work using geographical information systems (GIS), and a variety of digital-mapping techniques to produce geographical information in map, diagram and graph format, used for everything from tourist maps and maritime charts through to road atlases and transport maps.
Think of it this way: without Cartographers there would be no SatNavs. Your move Tom-Tom…
Will I need a degree? Generally you will not need a degree, although this may vary depending on your position.
Perfect for: People who want to love making maps.
Avoid if: You think scales are optional.
It’s a well-known fact that children are our future. Teach them well, and let them lead the way. However, a less well-known fact* is that this quote was directly referring to teaching Geography.
Whether it’s teaching about the dangers of deforestation, or educating the masses on the financial plight of the people of the Mezzogiorno, inspiring the next generation of geographers can be an incredibly rewarding career move, especially for anyone interested in all-things environment.
Key attributes for successful Geography Teachers include excellent motivational skills, patience, tact, and an explicable penchant for terrible ties.
Extra consideration will also be given to those candidates who can deal with technical terms such as groyne, fish ladder and climax vegetation without sniggering,
Will I need a degree? Yes.
Perfect for: People who live to teach about tectonics.
Avoid if: You thought the capital of Luxembourg was a trick question.
International Aid/Development Worker
Around 1.4 billion people around the world still live in poverty.
This shocking and unsettling statistic is all that’s needed to explain just why International Aid and Development workers do what they do.
It is their job to go to the harshest of climates and most harrowing situations to try and help implement a long-term solution to improve lives in the developing world. They help build schools, provide education and healthcare, improve sanitation and help with disaster relief, as well as provide more technical support such as water engineering.
Remember: help doesn’t have to begin at home.
Will I need a degree? A degree will help, although entry-level or voluntary positons may be possible without.
Perfect for: People who want to live in a world without poverty.
Avoid if: You’re not really a fan of getting your hands dirty.
Stuck between a rock and a hard place? We might have found the right career for you…
Surveyors collect and interpret data regarding areas of land, mapping out buildings, boundaries and buttresses (and lots of other features which don’t begin with the letter ‘b’), for a range of different purposes.
Also known as land surveying, or geomatics, this profession is especially important for construction and property projects, although some surveyors choose to specialise in off-shore operations, mapping underwater features or helping with exploration at sea.
Will I need a degree? A degree (preferably accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) will generally be a pre-requisite.
Perfect for: People who look good in high-visibility vests.
Avoid if: You’re only in it for the hard hat.
Traffic. Delays. Cancellations. Congestion.
Let’s face it, nobody likes the darker side of transportation. However, apart from pretty powerful sighing or the odd passive aggressive outburst on social media (#train #annoying #RantOver), what can we do to change things? Well, quite a lot, actually.
In fact, if you work in transport planning, helping to promote and facilitate growth and improvement in transport systems will be your raison d’être. Planes, trains, automobiles et al. And aside from making our journeys smoother, they also make them safer, analysing accident black spots and introducing measures to make a difference.
Transport planners: congestion relief, guaranteed. (Warning: This applies to traffic congestion only. If problems persist, you’re probably better off with some form of medicine).
Will I need a degree? A degree is sometimes considered a pre-requisite, although a HND and relevant vocational training in transport planning will be enough for some employers.
Perfect for: People who want to be transport system pioneers.
Avoid if: You’re still waiting for the horse and carriage to make a comeback.
For some people, finding holidays can be stressful.
How far away from the beach is it? Does it have a good nightlife? Is it near any famous landmarks that I can take moody photos of and put on Instagram? The answer to these, and numerous other seemingly essential destination deal-breakers, are all in a day’s work for a Travel Agent.
It’s their job to find the perfect holiday for customers, whatever they’re into. So whether it’s a weekend away in South Wales, or the trip of a lifetime in Torremolinos (each to their own), they’ll always endeavour to find the right deal for you.
Perks of the job include excellent employee discount, the opportunity to travel, and the ability to instantly pass insider knowledge on to drastically improve your friends holiday plans (‘Honestly Alan, this year is going to be all about Halkidiki…’)
Will I need a degree? A degree is not a pre-requisite, although you will need exceptional sales skills and a passion for travel.
Perfect for: People who wish their career was Going Places (or name of other Travel Agent that currently operates).
Avoid if: In your opinion, you can’t beat a bi-annual beano to Broadstairs.
Honourable mentions: Environmental Consultant, GIS Analyst, Geologist, Geophysicist, any other position that begins with the prefix ‘Geo’.
*may not be actual fact
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