Careers by Major - Geography
- Careers for graduates
- Who employs geography graduates?
- Skills developed by geography students
- Alumni profiles
- Sample job postings
- How to get experience
There are many different career options available for Geography graduates. Below is a sample of types of positions available to graduates.
Note: This is not an exhaustive list as there are many other careers available. Many positions require additional education or experience.
Human (social, economic, historical and cultural studies)
Cultural and human geography: aspects of geography that relate to different cultures (ie: cultural origins and movement). Historical geography: recreating the geography of past times and protecting historical landscapes and structures. Economic geography: location and distribution of economic activity.
Examine distribution of the Earth’s surface features and analyze the processes that create and shape landforms. May include working with environmental concerns and/or studying the impact of natural hazards such as hurricanes, tornadoes, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.
Computational and analytical methods
Use computers to generate maps and store map-related information. May be applied to problem solving in industry, agriculture, weather, military, government, land use and other related areas.
Concerned with how human beings use the earth. Focus on human impact on the environment (population growth, food supply, water quality).
Note: career profiles for many of the above jobs are available in the Career Centre. Those marked with an asterisk(*) can be viewed using Career Cruising, a Canadian electronic career guide available on CLN under the Resources tab.
- Forestry, mining, environmental issues, waste management, architecture or surveying companies
- Insurance, communications, international trade, transportation
- Private industry including utilities, construction, energy, environmental planning
- Government agencies
- NGOs (non-governmental organizations)
- Consulting firms
- Real estate developers
- Scientific or research groups
- Market research organizations
- Boards of education/universities/colleges
- Outdoor recreation companies
- Magazine/newspaper companies
- Using specialized field equipment, satellite imagery and state of the art software
- Project design/planning
- Interview skills
- Gathering and organizing data
- Analyzing data
- Summarizing results
- Surveying and sampling
- Computer modeling
- Using statistical applications
- Reading/constructing graphs/maps
- Communicating across cultures
- Conducting field studies
- Maintaining records
Sample of companies who have recruited U of T geography grads in the past include:
- Credit Valley Conservation
- Hemson Consulting Ltd
- Riversides Stewardship Alliance
- Toronto Conservation Authority
- Clayton Research
- Yum! Restaurants International
- Transearch Group Inc.
- World Wildlife Fund
- Energy Probe Research Foundation
- City of Toronto
- Corporation of the Town of Whitby
- Parks Canada
- Colliers International
- The Nature Conservancy of Canada
- BMO Financial Group
- Canadian Urban Institute
- Sobeys Ontario
- Generation 5
- Reamined Systems Inc.
- Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
- and many others
- GIS Technician, MAPMedia Corp.
- Planning Analyst, E.R.A. Architects Inc.
- Intermediate Water Resources Specialist, Clarifica Consulting
- Project Engineer/Scientist, S2S Environmental Inc.
- Terrestrial Monitoring Specialist, Credit Valley Conservation Authority
- Project Analyst, Gaia Power
- Location Research Analyst, Pizza Pizza Limited
- Nature Interpreter, High Park Nature Centre
- Architectural Digitizing Technician, Vermuelens Cost Consultants
- Market Planner, YUM! Restaurants International
- EcoKids Program Manager, Earth Day Canada
- Quantitative Research Scientist, Environics Analytics Group
- Rouge Park Media & Communications Assistant, Toronto Conservation Authority
- Urban Design Coordinator, Bloor-Yorkville Business Improvement Area
- Marketing Research Analyst, Intercom Real Estate Services
- Hydrogeologist, Marshall Macklin Monaghan Limited
Start early by seeking relevant summer, part-time and volunteer opportunities that will help you gain experience and develop the skills that employers want. Below is a sample of the types of temporary positions that have recently been posted with the Career Centre. To access the summer, part-time, temporary and volunteer postings, log into the Career Learning Network.
- GIS Co-Op Student, Ontario Realty Corporation
- Student Travel Consultant, Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corp.
- Fisheries Habitat Technician, Credit Valley Conservation Authority
- Student Planner, Toronto Transit Commission
- Park Interpreter, Ontario Parks
- Meteorologist, The Weather Network
- Communications and Membership Coordinator, Ontario Clean Air Alliance
- Forestry Co-op Student, Regional Municipality of York
- Traffic Data Analyst, Transearch Group Inc.
- Animal Control Officer, City of Toronto
- Common Grounds Research Assistant, Evergreen
- Public Outreach Volunteer, Riversides Stewardship Alliance
- Transport & Research Assistants, Transport Scarborough
The Work-Study program provides eligible U of T students with an opportunity to work on campus during the academic year and gain academic/career related experience. Previous postings have included:
- Cultural Research Database Developer, OISE/UT
- Document Assistant, UT Centre for Urban & Community Studies
- Waste Management Research/Policy Analyst, UT Department of Geography
- Research Assistant – Water Pollution, UT Department of Economics
- ENSU Project Management Assistant, UT Innis College Environmental Studies Program
Research Opportunity Program (ROP)
Also consider the Research Opportunity Program at U of T Mississauga. Students earn course credit by participating in a faculty member’s research. Geography project titles from 2008- 2009 include: Stimulating Adaptation in a Changing Environment; and Building a Healthy City Through Research: Exploring the Role of Knowledge Translation.
4th year students enrolled in the Environment or GIS program are eligible for an intern placement. Application, program and employer information can be found here. Deadlines for the following academic year usually falls in May.
Other ways to get involved
Extern Job Shadowing Program
Extern is a career exploration program that offers you the opportunity to meet with people working in your preferred career area for placements of 1-5 days. Samples of previous Extern placements include: GIS Project Manager, Market Researcher, Urban Planner, and many others.
Join on-campus clubs and student associations that demonstrate your commitment and enthusiasm for particular industries. Check out the Toronto Undergraduate Geography Society (TUGS).
Informational Interviews allow students and recent grads to gather valuable, industry-specific information from professionals who work in your field(s) of interest. The insights students can gain will allow them to make more informed decisions, whether they are planning their career or looking for a job.
In The Field Program
In The Field connects a group of students or recent graduates with professionals working in a variety of occupations within one organization. During these visits, participants have the opportunity to ask questions and learn about the work environment, daily tasks, skills, and education required for each occupation. Participants can also learn about available positions and how to apply for industry- or occupation-specific jobs.
Check out our Alumni Profiles page, to read profiles of UTM alumni who have studied in this area, find out about their career path and how their experiences have affected their career direction.
Career Centre Library ResourcesThe Career Centre resource library holds a variety of career related books and the latest information on topics ranging from job searching and furhter education to career planning for specific groups including graduate students and the LGBTQ community. If you’re not sure what to do with your degree we have books with fresh career ideas for every discipline from Art to Zoology. Also, check out our collection of Career Profiles binders containing detailed information about careers in: Business, Finance and Administration; Natural and Applied Sciences; Health; Social Science, Education and Religion; Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport; Sales and Services; Trades, Apprenticeships and Primary Industries.
Career Panel Packages and Videos
- Activism, accessibility, diversity and equality, non-profit
- Communications, marketing and writing
- Economics and finance
- Government and HR
- Health and science
- International/abroad and languages
- Law, psychology, sociology, counselling and political science
- Theatre and drama, arts and entertainment
- Other packages
- Canadian Association of Geographers (information for students, member directory and employment postings)
- Geomatics Canada (includes a Canadian job board, company profiles and more)
- Geological Association of Canada (employment postings, information for students, member directory, professional development)
- Canadian Geospatial Data Infrastructure (includes industry information, governmental/private industry/non-profit contacts and opportunities listings)
- Environmental Careers Organization Canada (industry information for students including career descriptions, job postings for practitioners)
- GIS company, industry and employment information
- UTM Environment program has excellent links to labour market information for a range of areas
The Career Centre Resource Library is located in DV 3094. For more information please visit us, call 905-828-5451 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
What's your next step? Take a look at our Sample Career Plan to see suggested steps that you can take towards developing your career-work search plan. Check our Events Calendar regularly for upcoming career related events (we offer several networking events and panels throughout the year). Watch for our Get Experience Fair (held annually in September), the Graduate and Professional School Fair (held annually in late September or early October), and the Get Hired: Summer and Full-Time Job Fair (held annually in January).