GSA Connects 2021 in Portland, Oregon

Paper No. 114-7
Presentation Time: 3:20 PM


ANDRY, Eloise, New York, NY 10022

There is a growing awareness of the need to prepare undergraduate geology students for careers outside academia or geology, as many students will not immediately attend graduate school, if at all, and others may work in entirely different industries. On the surface, a geology major appears to teach students how to identify rocks, understand geologic processes, and conduct fieldwork, much of which doesn’t readily translate to other careers. However, geology teaches many unique and transferable skills applicable to other industries.

In investing, one must constantly identify which business drivers are the most impactful to the stock price (and therefore are the most important to thoroughly understand and forecast), draw informed conclusions from limited data, evaluate how new information impacts a business and changes one’s thesis, and communicate the thesis to Portfolio Managers. While Reinhard “Bud” Wobus did not expect to prepare me for a career on Wall Street, his lessons proved invaluable as he taught me 1) to think, both logically, and critically, 2) to identify which questions are the most important to ask and answer during the research process, 3) to use attention to detail to understand and inform the bigger picture, 4) to understand how components and processes interact and influence each other within a system and, 5) to clearly communicate the conclusions and supporting analysis. These skills are naturally developed by geology students as they are asked to combine classroom knowledge, observations from outcrops, and lab analyses and experiments to determine the geological events and processes that shaped the landscape.