UCL Earth Sciences


Alumni Profiles: Matt Wincott

Matt gained a MSc in Geoscience with Distinction at UCL in 2020 and now works as a geo-environmental consultant at a multi-disciplinary engineering consultancy.

My passion for geology was sparked by an interest in planetary science as a teenager. I was fascinated by the interplay of physics and chemistry, and how they shape the world around us and the other bodies of the solar system. I chose to follow that passion at university and therefore undertook a BSc in Geology at Royal Holloway University of London. I loved the course content and the fieldtrip opportunities that the subject offers. 

Alumni Profile Matt Wincott
I work for Hydrock as a Graduate Consultant within the Bristol Geo team. I manage geo-environmental and geotechnical ground investigations, analyse and interpret field test and lab results and report them to clients.

In the final year of my undergraduate studies, I had come to realise that many job opportunities were asking for a Master’s qualification, and that finding employment without one would be a struggle. However, I wasn’t yet sure which career path I wanted to take. I therefore looked for a course that would be flexible, interesting and fun. UCL’s Geoscience MSc course ticked all of those boxes, with the added benefit of being at a highly reputable institution. I opted for modules like Earth and Planetary Materials, Physical Volcanology and Volcanic Hazards, and Tectonic Geomorphology. Being a relatively small cohort made it a great environment for supporting each other and socialising.

Outside of lectures, I could often be found at The Huntley (UCL’s pub that conveniently neighbours the Earth Science department) or in UCL’s soundproof room (conveniently located beneath The Huntley), where I played in a band called Wedge (a subtle geological nod to accretionary wedges – somehow we never made it big). 
At the end of the spring term, the pandemic started and everyone was forced to adapt to a radically different and uncertain situation. However, UCL and the Earth Science department handled the situation well and offered great support to the students. As a result of the new regulations, we sat our exams and wrote our dissertations remotely. 

Although the year came to a strange end, I’ve kept very fond memories of UCL and was very excited to be invited back for our graduation ceremony in March 2022, only a couple of years after I was last on campus! It was a great opportunity to catch up with coursemates and lecturers and proved that the department has a strong sense of community for current students and alumni alike.  

Upon finishing the course in September 2020, I almost immediately got a job at Hydrock, a multi-disciplinary engineering company. I’ve been working there ever since as a geo-environmental consultant, which involves a great deal of site work, analysis and reporting to clients, usually in the context of the construction industry. We investigate chemical and physical ground conditions, providing remediation and geotechnical recommendations to ensure that people, structures and the environment remain safe. The balance of site and office work keeps it interesting, and it’s rewarding to know that I have a positive impact on the world. Building on the strong foundations of my degrees, I’m now on my way to chartership with the Geological Society of London.