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AAG Jobs and Careers Center Offers Career Insights, Development at Annual Meeting

February 13, 2013

In recent years, careers and professional development activities at the AAG’s Annual Meeting have been expanding and broadening, thanks in part to support from the NSF-funded Enhancing Departments and Graduate Education (EDGE) project. The 2013 Annual Meeting will feature a reconfigured Jobs and Careers Center, a centralized location where conference attendees can attend panel discussions, participate in workshops, receive free career mentoring, browse job postings, network with other geographers, and browse a variety of information and educational materials. "By consolidating our careers outreach in one space, we hope to increase their visibility, improve access, and foster connections across activities to create a more dynamic, engaging, and convenient experience," explained Joy Adams, a senior researcher at the AAG's Washington, DC, headquarters.

This year’s track of careers sessions has been organized around four main themes, each of which will be spotlighted on a designated day. Tuesday, April 9, will kick off with a special mentoring session and panel discussion for newcomers to the conference, followed by afternoon sessions about academic careers. Activities on Wednesday, April 10, will focus on careers in the business, government, and nonprofit sectors, while those on Thursday, April 11, will address how careers and professional development can be integrated into learning experiences, curricula, and course design for geography classes and degree programs. On Friday, April 12, the EDGE project will sponsor a series of sessions on the role of graduate education in career preparedness and employment for geographers, including an invited presentation by Paula Chambers, founder of VersatilePhD. The Jobs and Careers Center will also host workshops on professional networking strategies, teaching with the book Practicing Geography: Careers for Enhancing Society and the Environment, and how and why to become a certified GIS Professional (GISP).

Experienced professionals, educators, and advanced students will be available to provide informal mentoring on a walk-in basis during daily career mentoring sessions. Topics for discussion might include creating resumes and cover letters that will grab an employer’s attention; finding jobs where you can put your geography skills and training to work; developing and maintaining personal and professional networks; and long-term career planning. Visitors can also browse job postings in the Jobs and Careers Center at anytime during the career mentoring sessions or between scheduled sessions and workshops. The careers information table will be staffed and accessible during all operating hours for general questions, information, and resources. The complete schedule of activities is available online at http://www.aag.org/annualmeeting/jobs_center.

The Jobs and Careers Center will be located in the San Pedro Room of the Westin Bonaventure, and it will be open from 8:30 am until 4:30 pm April 9-12. There is no additional cost for registered conference attendees to visit the Jobs & Careers Center. However, pre-registration and a nominal fee are required to participate in the workshops. Workshop information is available at http://www.aag.org/annualmeeting/workshops.

For information and materials about careers in geography, visit the Jobs & Careers area of the AAG website (www.aag.org/careers). For more on the 2013 AAG Annual Meeting, to be held April 9-13 in Los Angeles, go to www.aag.org/annualmeeting.

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