The University of Vermont’s Geography Department: an undergraduate experience

Authors: Katya Rudnik*, University of Vermont
Topics: Geography Education, Higher Education, Human Rights
Keywords: undergraduate, geography, undergraduate geography experience
Session Type: Lightning Paper
Day: 4/5/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM
Room: Maryland C, Marriott, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The University of Vermont (UVM) is a mid-sized public university, including just under 10,000 undergraduate students, in the city of Burlington, Vermont. UVM’s Geography department enrolls approximately 70 majors and 35 minors. The department also regularly enrolls students in courses from our interdisciplinary programs. Geography faculty includes seven tenured professors and two lecturers. As a panel participant, I will provide insights into my experience in UVM’s Geography program and as an undergraduate student earning a B.A. degree at our state’s flagship research university. Studies in Geography immediately captivated me because of the interdisciplinary nature of this field. My coursework throughout my college education has had a human geography focus. Namely, it has given me the theoretical and methodological tools of critical thought to understand patterns of power dynamics and social inequality, which has been complimented by my Political Science minor. In my time at UVM I have learned skills in research methods and visualizing data (via mapping). This has provided me with the tools to analyze spatial patterns of diverse contexts. I was able to draw upon these skills during my most recent internship experience at the United Nations. My coursework, internships, research experiences, and faculty mentoring have positioned me well for possible careers in humanitarian or advocacy work centered around human rights. During my time at the AAG Annual Meeting, I look forward to sharing my experience. I also hope to learn more about fellow geographers’ work and potential career paths I might pursue after graduation.

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