Internships, Employment and Graduate School

Internships and Employment

The department strongly encourages each student to have an internship. The internship provides employment related to his/her course of study and may be paid or unpaid. Many interns are offered full-time employment upon graduation from the place where they had their internship. The best time to take an internship is during the summer between the junior and senior year or during the senior year. Faculty members at the department maintain ties with businesses, organizations and government agencies that provide internships and paid employment.

Faculty members can help students obtain employment information related to their course of study, even if it is not for academic credit. Information on internships and employment is posted outside Room 319A Meier Hall and is also posted at career services. All geography majors should visit the career services office in the Ellison Campus Center and learn about its resources, programs and employment listings by the beginning of his/her senior year.

Thinking About Careers That Require Geography-Related Graduate or Professional School Degrees

Over one-third of recent graduates of the geography department have entered graduate or professional school within four years of graduation. Most students work for a year or two after graduation from Salem State University before pursuing further education. The most common graduate and professional programs that geography graduates go on in are: geography, cartography/GIS, regional and environmental planning, business and law. For students at Salem State University who are interested in landscape architecture, the geography department offers an excellent major to prepare for admission to a graduate school of landscape architecture.

Those who may be interested in graduate school should discuss this topic with their faculty advisor by the end of their junior year, even if they don't plan to attend for several years into the future. This is important for not only course selection, but also to prepare the application forms, the personal statement (of study and career objectives), letters of recommendation, and portfolios that will be needed. Most graduate and professional schools require the GRE or another entrance examination. Students should plan to take the examination twice, to obtain the best scores possible. Graduate entrance examination applications are available at the career services office and examination study guides can be bought at leading bookstores. A high grade point average and a high examination score increases the probability of admission to the highest ranked graduate programs and the receipt of scholarships, assistantships and other financial aid to attend graduate school. Students should select graduate school programs to apply to following careful analysis of their academic interests and abilities and the specialization, location and bottom line cost of each potential program.