Student Research Reaches New Heights Over the Summer

Two CCSU GSCI majors,  Heidi Salg (left) and Kristina Landry (right), worked alongside department chair Mark Evans this summer conducting field research in Wyoming and Idaho. They recount their experiences here.

Working in Wyoming was an incredibly rewarding and exciting experience, definitely one that will remain one of my favorites from my undergraduate education. I’ve gained a much more holistic view of how geoscience is conducted.  I really enjoyed being totally immersed in the field work, and working with other students and professors; it really allowed me to absorb so much in such a short period of time.  But what I value most from the field work experience was being incorporated into a team and learning how geologists conduct research and study the earth. Being included in that processes and collecting data allowed me to apply my education and gave a tangible experience to my academic career. Through the course of two weeks I gained a lot of confidence and a deeper understanding of how geoscientists integrate their knowledge along with their skills of observation and interpretation to analyze the natural world and come to conclusions about the processes governing the earth. The trip really helped validate what it is that’s drawn me to geology

Also besides being a great educational experience it was just a really exciting camping trip in the rugged and beautiful Wyoming Salient and I’m very glad I was able to be part of the adventure. – Heidi Salg

This summer, I spent two weeks in Wyoming and Idaho conducting field work with a small group of professors and students.  This was my second year collecting data in this area. Both years have been incredible learning experiences.  Before I left for the field the first year, I had one year of classroom experience.  With two semesters of looking at pictures and diagrams, reading articles and textbooks, and attending lecture and lab, I felt fairly confident in identifying structures and taking measurements.  When I got into the field, however, it was not as easy as the textbooks showed.  In those two weeks I spent immersed in rocks, I relearned and truly came to understand what I had seen and read about in class.  Seeing first hand the immensity of many of the rock formations and structures gave me a better appreciation for the scale and expanse of the units that I saw on the maps.  The country of western WY and eastern ID was a wonderful place to see the natural landscape and geology.  The vast area of untouched land is the perfect canvas to imagine the history of the rock, and visualize the timing relations of different deformation events.  – Kristina Landry

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