After joining The University of Southampton to study english literature, Amy transferred to a BSc Geography degree after her first year and never looked back. Amy is currently studying her master’s degree in GIS and remote sensing and working towards her dissertation on glaciers.
It was during a third year trip to Arolla, Switzerland that Amy became interested in glaciology and got to develop friendships with course mates and bond with PhD student researchers.
On this trip in 2019, everyone travelled independently, as part of the adventure. After a day in Geneva, Amy reached her destination in Arolla. The group had an entire hostel, including kitchens, to itself and got to bond over cooking and late night sky gazing.
During the field trip, the group experienced the mountains, forests and glaciers. Due to the weather, hiking on the glacier wasn't possible but each student picked a topic of interest to explore in the field. Tour days and group sharings, followed by celebrations of hard work, brought Amy close to her course mates, lecturers and especially the PhD students who are a big part of the undergraduate experience.
“Before Arolla, I had never seen a proper mountain until I was on that train travelling. On the trip I got to connect with PhD students who inspired me to go into the research path I am now working towards. I struggle with field trips sometimes, and speaking with a PhD student on the trip allowed me to share this and express how I didn’t think I would be good enough for PhD study. He responded to with me an Alan Turing quote that I still refer to now: ‘Sometimes it is the people who no one imagines anything of who do things that no one can imagine’.
This trip remains one of Amy’s fondest memories of study. Learning specialist technical skills and coming together to cook meals and generally help each other is what made it so special.
Field trip highlights
Video of geography field trip showing student's highlights exploring glaciers in Switzerland