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Geography Career Night 2019

August 20, 2019

On Friday, May 10, 2019, Geography Career Night, sponsored by the Geography and Environmental Sustainability program and the Geography Society of UTSA, was held at the home of Dr. de Oliver in the King William District, for the benefit of some 40 undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, guests, and friends of geography. All were serenaded by the strings of sitar and guitar of Forrest Wilkinson and Esteban Spongberg, as a prelude to the speakers.

 

Dr. Jones led off by wishing bon voyage to our twelve graduating majors, and announcing Mastoris and Morris Geography Scholarship recipients Nicole Di Martino, Justin Guerra, Victoria Rodriguez, Esteban Spongberg, and Jewel Uzquiano. He commended the Geography Society co-presidents Tim Dupont and Brandon Stark. He announced the induction into AURA (the COLFA Academy of Undergraduate Research Associates) of Annie Burns, Justin Guerra, and Forrest Wilkinson. Finally, he presented a plaque to Annie Burns for the highest GPA of a junior or senior UTSA geography major in 2018-19. 

The main purpose of Career Night is to inform majors of career opportunities in areas such as GIS, urban planning, and environmental sustainability. The 2019 speakers included:

 

Lani Cabico May, Director of Sustainability, UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, “Sustainability on Campus and Beyond”

Erica Ragsdale, Neighborhood Engagement Officer, City of San Antonio Neighborhood & Housing Services Department, “A Career in Urban Planning”

Brittany Legg, Query Management Analyst, Indeed, Austin (formerly with Apple, Austin, “Geography in Tech”

Jonathon James, GIS Specialist/Database Administrator, Floresville Electric Light and Power System, “From the Classroom to Light and Power”

The speakers emphasized the importance of getting involved as volunteers and interns prior to seeking a job. They introduced the audience to the various initiatives that UTSA, the City of San Antonio, and private firms are implementing to address environmental issues, neighborhood engagement, developing better maps, social applications of GIS, etc. They touted the value of life skills or “soft skills” in landing and keeping a position---curiosity, adaptability, ability to teach others, being a team player.

This event is the capstone of Geography Society activities during the year, and it gives students ideas and contacts that are frequently the first steps to internships and jobs in the San Antonio and Austin metro areas.   

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