Spencer Williams, studying in the School of Geography, BA Geography (Industrial) course.

Spencer Williams

Spending over three years of my life reading geography at the University of Leeds has been an incredible experience. Looking back the time has flown by and I’ve achieved a lot! My biggest achievement has to be securing a graduate job with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in London after a successful year-in-industry with them, something that wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the School of Geography.

Geography is an all-encompassing subject and really can open opportunities for you. For example, the degree in Leeds has taken me to the Austrian Alps to study glaciers and more locally, to volunteering with the charity Groundwork every week in my final year, in Huddersfield. The degree is set up in such a way that even if you can’t decide between human and physical geography, you can take modules that overlap the two. For example, I’m a physical geographer and decided to do my dissertation that crosses both human and physical disciplines. The staff in the School of Geography are approachable and encouraging – they will truly support you in everything you want to do (within reason)!

Spending a year-in-industry with PwC training to be a Chartered Accountant (and passing 8 out of 15 ACA exams in the year out) was a bit of a shock to the system coming from a geography background. But the support I had from the School of Geography whilst on placement and then while re-integrating myself into my final year has been fantastic and really helped me achieve what I wanted to achieve.

My Leeds experience hasn’t stopped with geography. I’ve also had time to work as a barman in one of the best Student Unions in the Country – Leeds University Union. Leeds is also a great place for sport. I’ve played sport at a high level – playing football for ‘Regents Park Rangers’ the reigning (and 3 times) intra-mural league 1 champions, and will be representing Leeds University in the varsity match against the Leeds Met intra-mural football champions later this year. 

So, to sum up, studying geography at Leeds has given me opportunities that I hadn’t thought possible after leaving school and has made me the person I am today. Thanks, Geography!