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Know Your Skills

You’ve already got skills!

While working towards your degree you will develop skills inside and outside the classroom that will attract the attention of employers and help you achieve your future goals. Knowing what your skills are is the first step.

Physical Geography Skills & Knowledge

 Skills and knowledge you may gain from your program:

  • Effectively integrate geographical knowledge and skills (including an explicitly spatial perspective, critical social science approaches, and an understanding of processes in the natural world and human-environment relations) in a variety of occupational settings
  • Apply geographic concepts (place, space, scale, and in human geography concepts of community and identity) to help understand and solve important societal challenges arising from human-environment interactions and conflicts
  • Collect, process, analyze and interpret geographic qualitative, quantitative, and/or spatial data
  • Conduct geographic and environmental research to support informed decision-making and policy development
  • Clearly communicate geographic-environmental issues and topics to a diverse audience in verbal and written form using a variety of media and presentation types
  • Workplace skills through practicum or co-op, including: leadership, responsibility and initiative in the workplace; ethical work conduct; independent work and group work; meeting productivity demands and deadlines; networking.
  • Explain and integrate key concepts and processes in the description of the biophysical environment and Earth systems
  • Critically analyze and incorporate biophysical data in environmental monitoring, management and policy
  • Collect and analyze geographic and environmental data in field and lab settings and learn methods commonly used within environmental management and consulting organizations
  • Understand and communicate environmental issues and learn to apply geographic analyses for environmental research, management

Transferable Skills

Transferable skills are a core set of skills and personal attributes that you can develop almost anywhere! They allow you to be adaptable and to succeed in virtually any work or school environment, as well as in everyday life. As a Carleton student, you are already gaining these valuable skills when you study, work at a Co-op or part-time job, volunteer, complete a practicum, join a club or engage in sports, even when doing group projects.

Here is a list of transferable skills which are highly sought after by employers. It was developed according to reports and research produced by provincial and federal governments, think tanks, and professional associations. Scroll through to learn more about People, Research & Planning, Thinking, and Personal Skills and to identify the skills you are developing!

Visit the Geography website for more resources 

Future Possibilities in Geography

There are many paths and possibilities available to you upon graduation. The path that you choose to take with your degree will be influenced by a number of things: your skills, interests and values, the job market, the people you meet and even chance events!  

Here is a sample of the diverse career paths of recent alumni created using data from LinkedIn. You can also check out career paths of Carleton alumni by visiting LinkedIn. Some positions may require additional education, training and experience.   

  • Agriculture
  • Consulting
  • Conservation
  • Energy
  • Emergency Management
  • Environment
  • Forestry
  • Oil, Gas and Mining
  • Planning
  • Waste Management
  • Non-Profit Organizations
  • Project Management
  • Government
  • GIS Technology
  • Data Technology
  • Surveying
  • Research
  • Quality Control
  • Risk Management

  • Soil Assessment Specialist
  • Agricultural Water Resources Specialist
  • Agricultural Research Technician
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Sustainability Consultant
  • Park Naturalist or Interpreter
  • Resource Conservation Specialist
  • Water Conservation Specialist
  • Wetlands Specialist
  • Energy Specialist
  • Climate Change Analyst
  • Emergency Management Specialist
  • Natural Hazards Analyst
  • Environmental Quality Specialist
  • Natural Resource Planner
  • Reclamation Specialist
  • Air Quality Specialist
  • Environmental Policy Analyst
  • Environmental Assessment Office
  • Environmental Technician
  • Forestry Technician
  • Environmental Monitor
  • Pollution Control Technologist
  • Coastal Zone Specialist
  • Waste Management Specialist
  • Recycling Coordinator
  • Hazardous Waste Management Specialist
  • Water Resources Coordinator
  • Energy Policy Advisor
  • GIS Analyst
  • GIS Technician
  • Hydrographic Surveyor

Get Involved, Gain Skills

Getting involved in on- and off-campus activities for pay or as a volunteer helps develop skills, build resumes, construct successful graduate and professional school applications, and will help you to succeed in life after graduation. It will also help you to clarify your interests and strengths.

Within Your Program

Many programs have societies and clubs which provide excellent opportunities for you to get to know your peers and discuss topics related to your degree. Your department may also offer opportunities to get involved in conferences, associations, co-op and practicum placements, events, and research. Your professors are also an invaluable resource.

Visit your department’s office or website to discover events and opportunities for current students.

Other Ways to Get Involved

Co-Curricular Record

The Co-Curricular Record (CCR) is an official document of your involvement outside of the classroom.

Search the Co-Curricular Record to find activities that will match your interests and build your employability skills.

Visit the CCR Website 


Step 1 – Connect with Career Services and access numerous resources to:

  • Explore career paths
  • Identify and showcase your skills to increase your employability
  • Strategically look for jobs, volunteer and experiential opportunities

Step 2 – Check out the LinkedIn Students App to:

  • Discover jobs that are a good fit for your degree, see career paths of recent alumni and build your network