The event was planned jointly by academics in the Department and the Geography Society. This partnership, along with extensive marketing of the event through a range of social media, was key to engaging with and enthusing students about the event.
Dr Jonathan Potts from the Department of Geography believes that the success of the event on the day was down to inviting alumni to speak as they knew the department and curriculum and, as they were recent graduates, the students could really relate to them. Each speaker gave a short presentation on their career to date, how their geography degree related to the world of work and, importantly, provided tips and experiences about getting into their chosen professions.
The variety of alumni careers and organisations was also highly beneficial – these ranged from the commercial sector (IBM), government environmental agencies (Natural England) and software companies (ESRI) to local authorities (Havant Borough Council) and project management consultancies (Paul Basham Associates).
Lucy Smedley from the Geography Society stated that ‘The event offered a valuable opportunity for students to relate their academic lives to the opportunities that are available to them in the future, as well as understand the ways to achieve success throughout the application process. This event specifically stressed to the multitude of industries available to geographers and the relevance and applicability of their Geography degree from the University of Portsmouth’.