The Alumni Association of The University of Western Ontario is proud to serve and represent more than a quarter million alumni around the world.

We are committed to delivering the finest alumni experience, in keeping with our continued number one ranking as "Canada's best student experience”.

Student Success Centre


The Student Success Centre is here to help with each step of your journey to a successful future. Our mission is to facilitate the development of career, educational, and life competencies for students and alumni through programs and services that guide successful transitions, foster local and global citizenship, promote leadership opportunities, encourage personal growth, deliver career resources, and ignite active engagement.


Earth Science

Earth Sciences (Geology, Geophysics, Environmental Geoscience) is the study of the history, structure and dynamics of planet Earth. Studies in Earth Sciences include: the origin of the Earth and its evolution; the nature of minerals and rocks; volcanoes and earthquakes; the origin of the oceans, atmosphere and changing climate; the origin and evolution of life; plate tectonics and the drift of the continents; the creation of mineral, oil and gas deposits and methods of exploration; the movement of groundwater and contaminants.

Increasingly, a grounding in Earth Sciences is seen as essential for those concerned with care of the environment and assessment of natural hazards, as well as for those involved with utilising Earth's resources. Solutions to problems of pollution and waste disposal, to major civil engineering problems such as those encountered at dam sites, and to the effects of global change arising from human impact on the environment, must all be sought within the framework of Earth Sciences.


Discipline specific knowledge is only one of the many benefits of pursuing an undergraduate degree. However, this knowledge alone is not enough to prepare you for entering the world of work. You will discover that the content of your degree does not restrict your job opportunities.

Being aware of the transferable skills you've developed throughout your studies will better prepare you for entering the job market and allow you to articulate the skills that are so valued by employers.

Knowledge Skills

  • A broad understanding of the earth and sustainability

    The ability to identify, research and act on environmental and social justice issues

Communication Skills

  • The ability to present your thoughts clearly and intelligently in oral presentations and written statements

Organization Skills

  • The capacity to critically analyze problems from both qualitative and quantitative approaches, think creatively and make sound decisions while considering different sides of an argument

Management Skills

  • Skills enabling you to work effectively as part of a team by identifying your role and contributing, through leading, teaching, motivating and/or encouraging others, to the success of the team

For a more complete list of transferable skills click here.


Did you know that there are over 2 million job titles and over 900 industries in Canada? That is a lot of possible career options! Understanding the Canadian economy and the types of jobs that are available is one of the best ways to begin your career search.

Students often report feeling limited by their degree choice and worry that they may not have many viable career options. Although your degree can point you in a career direction, it will not necessarily determine the type of job you can pursue. Unlike many college programs, your undergraduate degree is not intended to train you for one specific job. Some students may feel frustrated by this, but the great news is that your degree opens up many more opportunities than you may think!

Employers today are looking for graduates with transferable skills and people who have a sense of where they fit into the world of work. Because of this, it is really important to think beyond your degree when making a career decision. You want to consider all of your interests, the skills you would like to use, what fits with your personality, and the values that you have.

Determining your career path requires a lot of research, both personal and occupational. It's almost impossible to make a career decision if you haven't invested time in both of these things. This section will get you started and will showcase some popular industries and occupational areas related to your degree.

Educational Services

The Educational Services sector comprises establishments that provide instruction and training in a wide variety of subjects. This instruction and training is provided by specialized establishments, such as schools, colleges, universities, and training centers. These establishments may be privately owned and operated for profit or not for profit, or they may be publicly owned and operated. They may also offer food and/or accommodation services to their students.

Educational services are usually delivered by teachers or instructors that explain, tell, demonstrate, supervise, and direct learning. Instruction is imparted in diverse settings, such as educational institutions, the workplace, or the home, and through diverse means, such as correspondence, television, the Internet, or other electronic and distance-learning methods.

Sample Job Titles:


Career and Technical Education Teacher

High School Teacher

Instructional Coordinator



Postsecondary Teacher

Preschool Teacher

Supply Teacher

Environmental Industry

The environmental technologies (ET) industry is defined as all goods and services that generate revenue associated with environmental protection, assessment, compliance with environmental regulations, pollution control and prevention, waste management, renewable energy, remediation of contaminated property, design and operation of environmental infrastructure, and the provision and delivery of environmental resources.

Eco.Org - This environmental careers organization has some of everything; News section has listing of environmental career links, Career Services has a listing of paid environmental internships, Publications sections has some good books for sale, etc.

Environmental Careers World - Job listings and information for employment in the environmental sciences.

Environmental Jobs and Careers - Information and job listings for industry and government employment related to the environment

Hydrogeology/Geology - A listing of available positions and resume posting in the field of hydrogeology

National Ground Water Association - Listing of positions available in ground water-related fields (hydrogeology, environmental geology, etc.)

Geographic Government

i) Geological Survey of Canada (GSC)
. Every summer, the GSC conduct field work in many areas of Canada, including offshore. They also do a fair amount of lab or computer based research, so many summer jobs with the GSC are mainly in one of their offices. Most of the GSC's non-coop summer hiring is done through the Federal Summer Work Experience Program (FSWEP). Applications are usually accepted starting in February.

ii) Ontario Geological Survey The Ontario Geological Survey also hires summer students for field projects. The demand is somewhat variable from year to year. Apply through the web site.

iii) Provincial Geological Surveys Other provinces have geological surveys can easily be found using any internet search engine.

iv) Environment Canada

v) USA Government Agencies

Environmental Protection Agency
U.S. Geological Survey
U.S. Forest Service

Bureau of Land Management
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


In order to practice geoscience in Canada, it is necessary to be licensed (See CCPG P.Geo. Requirements Handbook (PDF)). In Ontario, the APGO licenses geoscientists under the Professional Geoscientists Act, 2000. To be licensed it is necessary to complete a four-year B.Sc. or equivalent with courses as specified by the APGO. Western's Professional Programs are one way to ensure that you will fulfill all academic requirements by graduation. Following a four-year apprenticeship as a Geoscientist-In-Training (GIT) and the successful completion of an ethics and practices exam, you can be licensed as a Professional Geoscientist (P.Geo.)

Geologists, Geophysicists and Environmental Geoscientists work in government, academia, and industry. They explore for valuable minerals, oil and gas, and water resources, perform environmental assessments and remediation, study natural hazards and risk assessment, climate change, and the history of the Earth itself, life on Earth, and the composition of other planets in the solar system and beyond.

Geology was ranked one of the 15 most valuable college majors by Forbes magazine in 2012. Western's Earth Sciences program offers training for a lifelong career in a dynamic, growing and rewarding field.

Mining Industry

Many students are aware that the mining industry holds a convention in Toronto every March called the PDAC (Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada). Some students with strong networking/communication skills have used the PDAC as a forum to find a job. In fact, the PDAC typically has a job fair for students.

ii) General mining geology job sites
Mining USA employment page
Industrial Companies and Commodities: mining (InfoMine & Industry Book - mining, for example), tile, clay, limestone, cement, coal, oil/petroleum, crushed stone, sand and gravel, industrial minerals, lime, soda ash, trona, zeolite, metals, phosphate rock, gypsum, diamond Mining Plaza - jobs for new graduates in Australia

Sample Large Mining Companies :

De Beers Canada

Noranda Inc.

Cominco Ltd.

Diavik Diamond Mines Inc.

Rubicon Minerals Corp

BHP Billiton Jobs

Oil & Gas Industry

The petroleum industry includes the global processes of exploration, extraction, refining, transporting, and marketing petroleum products. The largest volume products of the industry are fuel oil and gasoline (petrol). Petroleum (oil) is also the raw material for many chemical products, including pharmaceuticals, solvents, fertilizers, pesticides, and plastics.

The oil and natural gas industry is one of the world's largest industries. Its revenues are large, as are the costs of providing consumers with the energy they need. The Canadian oil patch is traditionally a very high employer of Earth Sciences graduates. Most of the oil patch is headquartered in Calgary, but there is a small but growing petroleum industry in southwestern Ontario.

General oil industry web sites:

Petroleum Place Inc.
Petroleum Services Association of Canada
Hoover's Online Integrated Oil and Gas Industry Listing

Sample Job Titles:

Petroleum Geologist



Other Industries

This section has highlighted a number of popular industries and job titles that align with your academic program; however, it was by no means an exhaustive list of all the possible options available to you with the degree you possess. Access the resources below to learn about other industries and job titles that are a fit for you.

Canadian Industries: Browse through over 900 Canadian Industries.

LinkedIn: Search through thousands of Western Alumni by degree.

National Occupational Classification (NOC): The national reference on occupations - organizes over 40,000 job titles.

Informational Interviews: Find out about jobs and career paths you never knew existed.

CareerCruising: Peruse career & further educational options (visit the "Resources" section of CareerCentral for the username & password).

Working in Canada: The leading source for labour market information in Canada.

US Occupational Outlook Handbook: Browse hundreds of occupational profiles.

Featured Employers

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