For students planning to terminate their formal education with the bachelor's degree, geography provides both the regional and world perspective required of responsible citizens. For the same reason geography is especially valuable for those who plan to enter graduate work in business administration, planning, law, or medicine.
Geography also offers a number of rewarding opportunities in teaching at all levels of the educational system. The revitalization of elementary and high school curricula to include or strengthen geography has increased the demand for qualified teachers in our primary and secondary schools, both public and private. In addition, growth of urban and environmental studies programs in colleges and universities, as well as a renewed interest in geography itself, have increased the demand for good teachers and researchers in geography in many undergraduate and graduate institutions. Thus the need for Ph.D. level geographers is growing. There are numerous respected and exciting graduate programs in Geography in North America, and the demand for well-trained undergraduates from programs such as Dartmouth's has always been strong.
The potential of applying the geographic approach in government and private enterprise is increasing considerably, although many positions will not carry a geography title. Many employment opportunities exist for individuals trained in geographic information systems, cartography, remote sensing, and computer mapping. Roughly a quarter of all professional geographers today find employment in government either at the state or local levels, or in a variety of federal agencies, the armed forces, and in international organizations. Geographers hold such job titles as cartographer, geographic analyst, map curator, land officer, international economist, forest ecologist, soil conservationist, and climatologist.
The application of geographical methodologies in private business is appropriate especially in industrial location analysis, in market research, and in transportation planning and design. Another rapidly developing field is metropolitan and regional planning. Other geographers in private business work as writers, editors, and cartographers for publishers of maps, atlases, textbooks, encyclopedias, and news and travel magazines.
For more information please visit: Association of American Geographers Career Guide, a resource for individuals looking to explore opportunities in geography.
Last Updated: 9/10/12