Geologists are experts in the scientific study of the Earth's structure, which is an invaluable skill in industries such as oil, gas and civil engineering.
As it is such a technical career, entry requirements are high and only people with relevant degrees will be considered for even relatively junior jobs. Geology is the best choice of undergraduate course, but people with physics, geophysics or geochemistry qualifications are also in demand.
Most geologists start as graduate trainees with mining, petroleum, gas, water, nuclear, engineering or environmental companies, where they will work as part of teams undertaking assessments for new projects and monitoring the condition of ongoing ones. The starting salary for this sort of job is in the range of £25,000 to £30,000.
Staff who go on to achieve Chartered Geologist status or who develop specific expertise in high-value sectors, such as oil and gas exploration, will see their pay rise quickly. Salary packages in excess of £70,000 are common, while people who are happy to work on projects overseas can earn more than £90,000 a year.
The other employment option for geologists is to make a career in academic research. The kind of studies undertaken could include seismic activity and standards for safe storage sites for nuclear waste.