Kugluktuk High School, in Nunavut

“I completed my practicum placement working as a high school geography teacher at Kugluktuk High School, in Nunavut. I was able to apply the knowledge and skills I learned while completing my Geography degree at Carleton University. My first placement had focused on teaching high school geography students about provinces and territories, while this second placement centered around the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement. The students were great, and the experience was fantastic. Teaching geographical concepts at the high school level served as an opportunity to review what I learned in my degree, while sharpening my teaching skills.

Bence Csaba, Graduated with BA Honours Geography in Winter 2018

Canadian Coast Guard

“This summer, I was given the opportunity to act as a crewmember for the Canadian Coast Guard response station for the conception bay area, which included a variety of roles and responsibilities in the environmental field. It was an amazing opportunity that had huge benefits for me and my future. I worked in the IRB program, and completed many environmental projects. These included logging weather data, patrolling for Pollution events, and in some cases, assisting in managing them. As somebody who hopes to work in Environmental Response for the Coast Guard, this presented a unique and valuable opportunity for me to experience my desired position and gain experience in the field. Overall, I had a very positive experience, and had the opportunity to gain a lot of valuable skills. I’m proud of the organization I work for, and I stand by their values. I hope that in the future I have the same opportunity to work for them as an Environmental Response Specialist.”

Eric Noden, Graduated with BA Hons in Environmental Studies in Winter 2018

Tree Fest Ottawa

“As a fourth year student in geography, my practicum placement with Tree Fest Ottawa provided me with the opportunity to use my geographic skills in the workplace. My overall project was concerned with the future of Brewer’s Inlet, an area up for renewal in Ottawa, in hopes of proving that it is a valued urban greenspace. My project allowed me to use mental maps as a data collection and analysis method. My placement also provided me the opportunity to have conversations with like minded individuals concerned for the welfare of our environment, and discuss potential career paths that suit my interests. My practicum experience was extremely valuable and enriching, and opened my eyes to careers paths I had never considered before. I am grateful for my experience, and would highly recommend students partake in the practicum program, as it helps sew together various concepts you have learned throughout your university career.”

Shania Mahendran, Graduated with BA Hons Geography in Winter 2018 (Currently MA Northern Studies student) 

Rideau Valley Conservation Authority

“I have recently completed a practicum placement as a requirement of my degree at Carleton University through the department of Geography and Environmental Studies.  I decided to complete my placement with the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA).  The reason I chose to do my placement with RVCA is because I had previously worked there and wanted to continue working on the sampling I was doing during the summer.  During my placement I was responsible for collecting water samples and field data for the Surface Water Quality Monitoring Program.  The nature of the job allowed for many days spent out in the field gathering the samples and data.  Additionally, I was able to gain experience in other aspects of Rideau Valley’s work.  I was given opportunities to help with fish sampling and in other areas of water science, figure 1 shows a Northern Pike caught in one of the sampling nets along the Tay River.  My experience with RVCA during this time has been extremely pleasant and rewarding.  I enjoyed working outdoors even though the weather can be challenging at times.  The work is fun and being in the field can bring some unique challenges and I would not hesitate to do my placement with RVCA again or work in this field.”

Lake Johnston, Graduated with BA Hons in Environmental Studies in Winter 2018

Parks Canada Agency

“My name is Ashley Ford and I am a 4th year undergraduate student at Carleton University, completing my Bachelor of Arts Honours Degree with a major in Geography and double minors in GIS and Urban Studies. During my time at Carleton I chose to take the practicum placement course within the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies. It exists in order to provide students with an opportunity to gain a real experience within a professional setting outside of academia. It is meant to show students what they should expect in the working environment and what is expected of them within a career. I chose to complete my practicum at the Parks Canada Agency because of my passion for nature conservation and tourism. I had a great experience working with the Fire Management Branch at Parks and everyone there was so welcoming. I spent my time learning about how wildfires in parks are managed, along with the complex communications that are required for these processes. I am so grateful to my sponsor, team, and the Parks Canada Agency for providing me with this opportunity to grow as a professional.”

Ashley Ford, Graduated with BA Hons in Geography in Winter 2018

Environmental Services Department, City of St. Thomas

“Here’s a picture of me out in the field with the survey gear on a warm summer day. On the day this picture was taken I was collecting survey observations on property features including buildings, driveways, fences, gardens, trees and shrubs, and the location of water services. I had a lot of fun surveying because I got to use industry standard equipment, work independently, and constantly be presented with small challenges such as capturing unique or obstructed features of the terrain. It was also exciting being part of a future reconstruction and renewal project, where the information I was collecting will be used in the design process.”

Neil Curtis, Graduated with BA Hons Geomatics in Fall 2017

Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society

“I recently was given the opportunity to have a placement experience through my undergraduate program. A first go at a real world, professional job in my field of environmental studies – all I could think was that I need to be outside! As someone who has a passion for the outdoors, nature and animals, I was excited to learn what opportunities existed to incorporate this into a job. The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society is a Canadian organization which sponsored me through my practicum course and gave me the varied work experience I was hoping for – outdoor field work during nice weather, and office work once winter hit Ottawa. I was put on their road ecology project, studying the effects of roads on wildlife. While this meant I had to manage roadkill, and I would of course prefer to engage with live animals, it was realistic picture of how humans affect the environment around them and this was valuable insight. My office work also provided the opportunity to learn about how we can mitigate our effects on wildlife.”

Stephanie Medwenitsch, Graduated with BA Hons Environmental Studies Winter 2018

USC Canada
“The fight for seed sovereignty is one of the most rewarding and difficult tasks. On-top of running a commercial farm, the position is highly dependant upon making constant connections via social media and taking on many roles. These roles include researcher, marketing executive, farmer, media relations, educator, grain supplier, spoke-person, and whole-seller. In my practicum term I have learned the difference between many varieties of grain such as hulless barley, and hard wheat. I have been educated about the dangers of monoculture and the lost art of eating with the seasons. I am enticed by the beauty of Alberta Black Barley and Red Hard Worthog Wheat. This position has allowed me to make relative connections to USC Canada and Dr. Entz at the University of Manitoba. I have also had the opportunity to experience farmer-led research and have a deep understanding in its importance. I am eagerly awaiting the results from Dr. Entz and will happily continue seed saving, and participating in small-scale agricultural communities.”

Sandi Quesnel Malanka, 4th year student in Environmental Studies

Geological Survey of Canada

“I have had the opportunity to complete my practicum placement with the Geological Survey of Canada. The GSC is a part of Natural Resources Canada, and the national organization of geological research and information in Canada. My practicum allowed me to gain experience in my field of study and career interest through the digitization of old field notebooks into shapefiles that can be used for the creation of new maps to be used for current field research projects. My placement with the Geological Survey of Canada also allowed me to gain experience in the resource exploration field through the nature of the research projects being completed at the time of my placement.”

Hannah Anderson, 4th year student in Environmental Studies with a minor in Geomatics

Practicum at the International Institute of Sustainable Development (IISD)


“The experience of doing a practicum at the International Institute of Sustainable Development (IISD) gave me a chance to improve my research skills as well as learn new concepts in the world of climate finance and adaptation. As a practicum student with IISD, I was able to review case studies, projects and research in adaptation-related areas that were relevant to developing countries. This experience also provided me an opportunity to utilize past experiences in communications and outreach by enhancing my knowledge in using social media platforms such as Twitter. Working at the Ottawa office gave me a chance to experience the workplace environment in a research based organization like IISD. It also allowed me to interact with IISD experts in various fields such as economics, adaptation, and policy-making. Working at the Ottawa office, also gave me an opportunity to briefly interact with Mr. Scott Vaughan, the President and CEO of IISD. This practicum gave me an opportunity to learn from professionals in the field of adaptation and policy making.

As a practicum student at IISD, I was also able to attend and network at a high-level event organized by the Canadian Council for International Cooperation (CCIC). This event was designed to address the challenges and research areas that Canada and relevant organizations like IISD among many others, would be focusing on at COP21 in Paris this year. Attending this event made me realize that doing a practicum with one of the world’s foremost research organizations has proved to be an invaluable experience for me.”

Vasundhara Saravade, Graduated with BA Hons in Environmental Studies Winter 2016

Practicum at the National Wildlife Research Centre


“During my practicum at the National Wildlife Research Centre (NWRC) I was able to collaborate on interesting and relevant projects related to conservation biology of Eastern Arctic species threatened by climate change. In addition to learning new technical skills and methods to detect species presence; I also gained an invaluable understanding of how dedicated and intelligent individuals work together to create a high-functioning and effective team to promote meaningful action.”

Rachel Canham, Graduated with BA Hons Environmental Studies Winter 2016

Practicum at the Geological Survey of Canada

taylor at desk during practicum

“My practicum at the Geological Survey of Canada allowed me to expand my practical skills in GIS and gain working experience in my area of study by mapping and analyzing surficial features in ice-rich permafrost terrain in the North West Territories. It was an invaluable experience that opened many doors and has shaped my career aspirations.”

Taylor McWade, Graduated with BSc Hons in Physical Geography Winter 2016

Practicum at Ottawa Centre EcoDistrict


“Through my practicum placement at Ottawa Centre EcoDistrict, I was able to gain valuable skills that I would not have received in the classroom. The experience I attained from working at a local Environmental NGO allows me to have insight into the world of non profits and determine whether it’s a career path I would like to explore. I feel more comfortable graduating and entering the work force now that I have developed the soft skills needed to succeed in today’s workforce.”

Carolyn Schissler, Graduated with BA Hons in Environmental Studies and a minor in Geography Winter 2016 

Practicum at Stantec Incorporated

Michael“For my placement I worked at Stantec Incorporated, a company which provides professional consultation and planning services for a variety of projects. My experience included being introduced to office work such as the development of environmental assessments and included field work opportunities such as collecting groundwater samples. Overall I had a great experience working with my sponsor and company! I hope to continue to work with my sponsor company as I pursue a career collecting for, developing, and analyzing environmental assessments.”

Michael Wilczynski, Graduated with BA Hons in Environmental Studies Summer 2016

Practicum at Rideau Valley Conservation Authority


“My name is Jennifer Farrell, a fourth year Environmental Studies major who had the opportunity of completing a practicum experience during my degree at Carleton University. The Ontario Rural Wastewater Centre (ORWC) is a demonstration and research facility operating under the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority that works to research options for wastewater treatment and develop teaching materials. On behalf of the ORWC, I successfully researched, analyzed, and produced a manual outlining Low Impact Development Practices relating to effective wastewater management within the City of Ottawa. My practicum experience was highly rewarding as the manual will be published for use during courses and workshops hosted by the ORWC in the future.”

Jennifer Farrell, Graduated with BA Hons in Environmental Studies Winter 2016