Would you like to travel to jungles and deserts, working in the air, on the ground or under it, equally at home with a computer or a geological pick? As an exploration geologist with a large international mining company, that's what I do for a living - locating deposits of useful minerals and other materials such as salt, and evaluating their suitability for mining.
The mining industry is important because we rely so much on metals and fuels in our daily lives. If mineral deposits can be found quickly and cheaply, that helps keep the cost of living down and maintain our standard of living. Scientists can ensure that the environmental impact of mining is minimised and that site rehabilitation after mining ceases is complete and effective.
I am currently based in Irian Jaya, in eastern Indonesia, where I am helping to evaluate a gold prospect to determine whether it is economic to mine.
My work requires me to deal with many different people, including tribal indigenous people and government ministers. It has taken me to remote and exotic places, including one of the worldís biggest gold and copper mines located in rugged glacier-covered mountains in Irian Jaya.
In my profession, as in many nowadays, it is important to keep up your skills. I am about to begin studying for a Masters degree to add to my Bachelor of Science degree and certificate in underground mining engineering.
I believe it is much better to choose a career you enjoy, and for which you have an aptitude, rather than for lifestyle or money or even because you think the community will benefit from what you do.
There are many kinds of jobs that you may not even know exist, so choose something you want to do and see what opportunities arise.
Copyright 1997 Nancy Mills, PO Box 18166, Collins St East, Melbourne, VIC 8003
Page last updated 31 May 2000