James knows that geographical skills are essential to a career in geographical research. His course has already provided skills ranging from statistics to lab and fieldwork techniques. Meanwhile, co-curricular activities have improved his teamwork and social skills, which will come in handy on this summer’s fieldwork in the Austrian Alps.
What do you hope to go on and do when you graduate from the University of Leeds?
At the moment I am hoping to become involved in geographical research projects such as the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP).
What skills and qualities do you think you’ve gained from your course?
So far my course has provided me with skills ranging from GIS (geographical information systems) and statistics to lab and fieldwork techniques as well as the academic material gained from lectures and reading.
What skills and qualities do you think you’ve gained from co-curricular activities so far (e.g. volunteering, clubs/societies)?
I tried a number of societies at the start of the year but have proceeded with the band society which I am going to be treasurer for next year. It has allowed me to meet a lot of people outside my course and my accommodation which has been very enjoyable and provided me with the opportunity to play in a band myself. I also play volleyball just a bit of fun.
How will these skills and qualities help you achieve what you want to do when you graduate?
As I want to pursue a geographical career, geographical skills are integral. My co-curricular activities help to improve my organisation, teamwork and socialising skills which are very important when long periods are spent on project locations.
What has been your proudest moment while studying at Leeds?
I think my proudest moment at Leeds was getting the RGS (Royal Geographical Society) grant to go and do fieldwork in the Austrian Alps over the summer. It will be an amazing experience and means I don't have to work in a warehouse this summer!
How do you think you have benefited from studying at Leeds?
Leeds is a very vibrant city with a lot going on which is a big contrast to where I come from. The geography department at Leeds is one of the best for research in the country and many of my lecturers are leading academics in their fields which will no doubt benefit my studies.