In July, Ian McCary '12 and assistant professor Steve Nathan from the Department of Environmental Earth Science (EES) participated in a field trip to the Bighorn Basin in Wyoming. The trip was sponsored by ExxonMobil Corporation and the Geological Society of America.
Fifteen undergraduate students, eight graduate students and two professors from across the United States and Great Britain gained hands-on field experience under the guidance of globally renowned exploration geologists. The students worked in teams and one-on-one with experts to learn how to read the rocks and determine the suitability of a hydrocarbon prospect. More importantly, through this pre-professional experience, students gained marketable skills that were directly connected to a prospective employer. For Nathan, the field trip provided new materials for his introductory courses and a new, advanced class in EES.
After returning from the field trip, McCary said Eastern and field opportunities like this can shape careers: "The professors in the Environment Earth Science Department taught me the fundamentals of geoscience in the classroom, and this lab allowed me to apply these skills to my undergraduate research project, and motivated me to pursue a career in petroleum geology."