Emma Davie

Emma Davie

I started my current job in Sustainability a few weeks after graduation, and have remained in it ever since. I work for a mechanical and electrical engineering and services company called NG Bailey. My role is in a small team that manages the non-financial sustainability aspects of the business we do. In my role as Responsibility Analyst I lead on environmental impact campaigns, run our school engagement programme to introduce our brand and our work to the next generation of talented engineers, and am now leading on mental health and wellbeing in the company, amongst other projects.

The opportunity to take a year in industry (mine was with Network Rail) as part of my degree put me leaps and bounds ahead of other graduate candidates looking for jobs. Getting industry experience and demonstrating skill development in a workplace, however unrelated to the degree or desired career path was a vital part of getting my current role.

I liked the prospect of studying Geography at Leeds because of the number of module options - there was a lot of choice and opportunity to specialise in particular areas, as well as include aspects of the BA Geography course and other 'discovery' modules from a variety of other faculties. The university itself felt friendly and had a lot of facilities on campus - and is in a great location being both a short distance from the city centre, but also really close to countryside!

The opportunity to deploy research and theory into practice on a number of field trips both around the UK and in far off places like the Austrian Alps and New Zealand was one of the best aspects of the course - working with lecturers on contemporary research and making tangible contributions to the understanding of the world we live in.

I volunteered as a Royal Geographical Society 'Geography Ambassador', going into secondary schools and developing and leading engaging sessions to enthuse year 9 students about Geography - given that school engagement features in my current role, this experience was fantastic at preparing me! I also volunteered as an auditor for the NUS Green Impact Survey on university campus, which gave me an insight into corporate sustainability, as well as being a listening volunteer for Leeds Nightline. My Nightline experience allowed me to greatly develop my communication skills, as well as meeting a fantastic bunch of like-minded people!

The BSc Geography course is led by lecturers who are experts in their fields, and who are all really friendly and approachable, and lead on some fantastic field trips! You'll have so much choice on modules, whether you want to go into hydrology, ecology or geomorphology, there are tonnes of options for every interest and you'll gain skills from using mapping software, to statistical analysis, to interpreting and presenting real data you've collected yourself. There is also lots of opportunity in the School of Geography to go on a year in industry or year abroad to gain extra experience and develop your skills further - a huge advantage when looking for jobs during and after university.