Why Study Geography?

Why Study Geography?

1)  Get a great, interesting and well-paid job.  Consider the following trends:

  • The US Department of Labor Labor projects “much faster than average” growth, in excess of 20% or more, in jobs for geographers, geoscientists, cartographers, urban and regional planners, and other geographic professionals, with projected needs of upwards of 15,000 additional employees in each of these career fields between 2008-2018.
  • The US Department of Labor released a statement highlighting geospatial technology as one of the most important emerging and evolving fields in the technology industry.
  • Urban planning is one of the top 10 “hot jobs” in the country.

2)  Make a difference:

  • The opportunity to make a difference in the world is one of the most frequently cited reasons why current geography students, researchers, and practitioners explain their career choice.
  • Geography tackles issues of local, national, and global significance (e.g., climate change, immigration, economic trade) by attracting scholars drawn to its conceptual frameworks for interdisciplinary and integrative research.
  • At least three recent global trends can be identified where geographers are making a difference in society and the world:
    • Globalization at an increasing pace and scale, phenomena that compel greater understanding of the world, places, people, and natural systems that affect us as a planet and as global citizens and consumers.
    • Proliferation of geographic technologies,  such as GIS, satellite remote sensing and GPS in cell phones and cars, online mapping at your fingertips, cable news reports using spatial visualizations, and many more applications in modern business and government services.
    • Trend toward greater interdisciplinarity, especially a renewed focus on big questions that matter but that require a breadth of knowledge and multiple fields to tackle.

3) Be well prepared for a rewarding career:

  • Undergraduate degrees in geography at U.S. institutions of higher education grew by about 49 % in the past years;

  • During that same time period, master’s degrees in geography grew by over 50% (and doctoral degrees grew by about 71%).  These rates of growth outpace most other disciplines.

For more information about Geography careers, please, visit http://www.aag.org/cs/careers



Page last modified August 30, 2017