Why you should study Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Manchester

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Graduate Matt Petinaud is passionate about nature — so much so that he’s turned it into a career. Preventing climate change and preserving the environment is his nine-to-five reality.  “I hope my contributions can be even greater in the future, but for now, I’m happy to be playing my part,” says Petinaud. 

Working as a Carbon and Energy Consultant at Envantage in Didsbury, Petinaud owes his success and achievements to the University of Manchester’s Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences. He shares that the university fuelled his passion further, empowering him to turn his interests into an everyday reality. 

“The university has helped me to gain contacts from an industry that I never thought I’d be remotely interested in and have truly provided a platform on which I can succeed. Without their help and support, the opportunities I have been fortunate enough to experience would never have happened,” says Petinaud. 

The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences is ranked as one of the top 10 in the UK for Earth and Environmental Science (Times Higher Education World Rankings 2021) — and for good reason. It has a history of excellence in teaching standards, academic programmes and research. Little surprise why aspiring environmental change-makers flock to the university. 

At the University of Manchester, you can choose from a broad range of exciting programmes that cover the different sciences, from the origins of planets to the history of the Earth and the life that lives upon it. You will work closely with world-leading lecturers who will help you explore how your strengths can be combined with others to change the world. Here, students acquire invaluable skills and hands-on experience which will set them on a path to a stimulating, challenging career. 

Ask any graduate of a taught master’s degree and they can attest to how their University of Manchester degree has maximised their employability in a competitive jobs market. With their career progression accelerated, many have gone on to fulfilling work or PhD studies. 

Source: University of Manchester

They credit their success to the renowned academics and dedicated team of industry specialists that made this possible. These are the individuals that lead the following MSc programmes: Data Science (Environmental Analytics), Geoscience for Sustainable Energy, Petroleum Geoscience, Pollution & Environmental Control, and Subsurface Energy Engineering.

Whichever programme you choose, you’ll have access to world-class teaching. Renowned scientists will lead you through innovative and internationally recognised courses. Regular external talks from academia, consultancy and industry provide exposure to networking and real-world experience. The Centre for Atmospheric Science, Williamson Research Centre for Molecular Environmental Science, Manchester Energy, Research Centre for Radwaste Disposal and the Interdisciplinary Centre for Ancient Life offer access to multi-disciplinary exposure.

Pair this with research strengths and students are set to be prepared for industry and academia. The department is bolstered by a strengthened research position through the expansion of the Department to include environmental ecology and evolutionary biology. Its world-class research facilities include the Mineral Analysis and Geochemistry laboratories, Basins Seismic and Visualisation Facility; Molecular Environmental Science laboratories; Atmospheric Measurement Facility with a research aircraft; plus collaborations with other university facilities including Materials Science and Manchester Computing

At the University of Manchester, your education is limitless. You can choose to pursue a taught master’s or postgraduate research programme, both of which are internationally recognised with excellent industry connections. For student Klaudia Jedyka, she decided to pursue an MPhil in Soil Ecology after completing a BSc in Environmental Science. 

“Rachel Carson’s influential book, ‘Silent Spring,’ exposed the devastating impacts of pesticide use in 20th century US. It is this book, suggested as recommended reading in the first year of my Environmental Science degree, that inspired me to pursue the areas of soil health and sustainable agriculture throughout my course,” says Jedyka. With her newfound passion, she conducted a research project and even volunteered at local community gardens. 

“Volunteering in the garden has been a very fruitful endeavour for me in almost every aspect of my life. If you are a student, you are blessed with a lot of freedom with how you structure your work week, and I definitely recommend spending some of that time volunteering with a project you care about. Manchester is brimming with people trying to make the world a better place, why not lend a hand?” she says. 

Indeed, Manchester is a city that has received global recognition for taking action toward the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Not only is the city buzzing with life, history and diversity, but it’s a city that puts the environment at its forefront, working closely with the next generation of scientists. In the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences’s close-knit and multicultural community, staff, students and alumni are continuously contributing to public engagement, microplastics, water quality, and soil ecology, to name a few. 

By joining the department, you too can gain a unique combination of skills to address major challenges facing humanity in the 21st century. Learn more on how you can help tackle global challenges here.



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