The Society’s Young Geographer of the Year competition, run in partnership with Geographical Magazine, is for geography pupils aged nine to 18. It is awarded every year alongside the Rex Walford award which recognises the work of a trainee or new geography teacher.
This year’s awards ask entrants to write a submission answering the question ‘How can geography help you?’ With the awards now open for entries, we asked four geographers at in differing careers how geography has helped them to date.
2013’s winners, pictured with Professor Danny Dorling.
Joe Thorogood, postgraduate student, UCL
I never thought geography would help me, but I find it helps me all the time, well beyond my own academic studies due to its broadness and scope of study. I could be in the pub, on the bus or simply walking my dog. However beyond just quipping up an interesting fact here or there about the formation of drumlins or oxbow lakes, geography has allowed me to develop critically informed opinions of global and local events and processed happening all around me and influenced my own politics in constructive and progressive ways.
Olly Parsons, Disaster Response Programme Coordinator, GSMA Mobile for Development
Without a doubt, having studied Geography helps me in my day to day work. At the most basic level, the subject gave me an appreciation for global events, both natural and political. Studying Geography at BSc level gave me important key skills: research, communication, the capability understand and analyse different pieces of information, as well as understanding the interconnected nature of people and the environment; these are what really provide me with the crucial skills I need for my role.
Aditi Chat, Senior Fellow, Indian Council of Social Science Research
The study of geography has fascinated me since my school days, mostly because we had marvellous geography teachers who brought the subject to life with models, projects and photographs. Receiving the Society’s Henrietta Hutton research grant and becoming a Fellow gave me a distinct identity as a geographer. My training as a geographer has enabled me to write four books and theses and reports as well as over 200 articles in newspapers and magazines.
Dr Hilary Geoghegan, Lecturer in Human Geography, University of Reading
Geography is an academic discipline – the RGS-IBG is our learned society. I work as a lecturer in geography at the University of Reading. I research and teach aspects of human geography, specifically the role of place in motivating people in their work and leisure activities. I share my passion for thinking geographically through first year undergraduate lectures, attending conferences in places like Las Vegas, and discussing my work on BBC Radio 4. Geography has helped me carve out a career I really enjoy. So thanks, geography!
As geographers, we are acutely aware that where you are born, and to whom, have a great effect upon the opportunities available to you throughout your life.
7 April 2021
This year’s Young Geographer of the Year competition is now open for entries.
1 April 2021
Our Fellows come from a wide range of professional backgrounds from all over the world, united by a passion for geography.
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Read our resource on careers in finance and management consultancy based on advice from geographers working in the sector.
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