The world we live in is a fascinating and beautiful place. The Earth and all its inhabitants are part of a complex, ever changing story line that lies at the heart of physical and human geography. I find myself drawn as much to the study of the natural environment and physical landscapes as I am to the study of people, places and cultures. Understanding our world is a big part of my future.
From a young age I have wanted to travel and I love reading novels by foreign authors. ''Things Fall Apart'' by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe gives an amazing view into the world of the early African tribal system. The moral dilemmas in the book relating to the presence of western Governments on the continent make it a stimulating and insightful read. My first experience actually abroad was much closer to home; in the spectacular city of Berlin. Although only 12 I was fascinated by the city's history during the cold war and the architectural divide between the east and west. Since my experience in Berlin I have been much more aware of the urban geography of cities I visit and now realise the importance of learning a foreign language.
My first true introduction to the world outwith the city came from my Bronze Duke of Edinburgh expedition. I was enthralled by the sheer beauty of the Scottish mountains and the wildlife that inhabit them. From then onwards I tried to spend as much time as possible outdoors. I took up mountaineering, hill walking, camping and rock climbing and by the end of this academic year will have completed my Gold Duke of Edinburgh award. As my love of the outdoors grew so did my interest in biodiversity, the physical processes that shape the landscapes and the effect hobbies like my own are having on the environment. These interests, along with my love of cities and culture, make geography a perfect continuation to my education.
I made the decision to leave school after my Highers because I wanted a different educational experience away from the school environment before making the transition to university. Inspired by my love of the environment I chose Countryside Management at Oatridge College as it offered an engaging curriculum with a range of relevant subjects. The course has offered me the challenge of more independent study, continual assessment, lecture style teaching and a greater mix of students; all experiences that are providing me with excellent preparation for university. Now, half way through the course, I have excelled in all assignments and have matured academically and socially. My college experience has been thoroughly enjoyable and has cemented my decision to study for a geography degree.
I'm not yet certain of my career path but geography offers a multitude of options. This is another factor encouraging me to pursue the course as I have a wide sphere of interests. As well as outdoor activities I am a keen musician and play French Horn in a number of ensembles. I have had several part time jobs, and have enjoyed volunteering with Shelter and as a leader at Brownies. These roles have helped me develop additional organisational and leadership skills.
For the past two summers I have spent a week as a volunteer carer at Woodlarks Camp for disabled young women in Surrey. I was responsible for the personal care, safety and well being of one 19 year old 24 hours a day. Although exhausting, my time there has been incredibly rewarding and I have learnt much about myself and the lives of people less fortunate than me. It has also opened my eyes to the links between human and physical geography. By introducing these girls to the countryside for the first time I have learnt one very important thing: the environment, the weather, the buildings and the people that surround us have a profound effect on our happiness. Perhaps this is my main reason for wanting to study geography: I want to learn more about our world, how it influences our lives and how we can protect the wonders of what we have.
This personal statement was written by LizzieJones for application in 2013.
This is personal statement almost in its final draft. I am hoping to get into St Andrews so I hope it is good! Thanks for all comments/ratings.
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