Saturday, September 20, 2008

Careers in Geography

Frequently I am asked by students and others what careers are available to those who study geography. Many people think one can merely "teach" primary or secondary school courses but in reality the list of geography careers is wide.

The Economic Times of India has a brief description of the various paths geographers can take. SUNY has a bit longer description of the fields of geography which professionals can go into. The Association of American Geographers dedicates a website to geographical careers. And one cannot forget's guide.

One thing that is important is to remember that many geographical jobs do not have the title of "geographer" in them. Depending on one's interest city planner, forest ranger, demographer, GIS technician, oceanographer, imagery analyst are all geographer jobs.

Right now many geography jobs are listed in the field of GIS. Computer skills greatly aid one trying to obtain a job in GIS. However, do not despair if one hates GIS. The programs change so fast and the rise of Google Earth offer anyone a fairly easy chance to jump in. GIS is a good skill to have even if one takes another geography field career as it allows access to research tools.

Finally, websites like USA Jobs,, and the University of Colorado website feature careers for geography. Best of luck in your searches, young geography.


Adrian said...

One of my co-workers has a masters in geography (undergrad in urban planning). We are both crime analysts.

Roger W. Hart said...

I know a land surveyor who has a degree in Geography. He calls land surveying "Geography on a small scale."