As you look through the pages of this year’s Newsletter, I think you will agree that it’s been another exciting and productive year at the Jackson School of Geosciences.
One of the highlights for me occurred this summer when I was fortunate enough to travel to Newfoundland with graduate students on an amazing trip led by John Dewey—a giant in the field of plate tectonics, and someone I have known since my student days. The picture on the Newsletter cover and the photos on this page are from that trip. You can see more and read the students’ thoughts on the trip on page 52.
Going to Newfoundland exemplified the foundational geology experience that we provide students. But as we continue this tradition, we are also leading the conversation on the knowledge, skills and experiences that geosciences students need to succeed in the future. In January, I hosted an NSF-sponsored national summit for department heads and chairs on this issue. I also travelled to Mexico in a delegation
with UT Austin President Greg Fenves to discuss strengthening research ties. You can read about both events in the Outreach section (starts page 28).
Our 10-year symposium was also in January. It was a fun and informative gathering that allowed us to look back on what we’ve accomplished and discuss our vision for the future. We heard from distinguished speakers and a group of Jack Jackson’s old friends who discussed how he helped create one of the most prestigious geosciences programs in the world. You can read about the event on pages 28 and 29, and watch it on the Jackson School YouTube page.
I appreciate the positive feedback I received from an external visiting committee that evaluated the school in April, and I’m looking forward to incorporating their advice as we finalize the five-year strategic plan.
The Jackson School was behind many important and high-profile research projects this year—you may have heard about some of them in the news. These include the expedition to take core samples from the crater left by the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs (page 62); and our CT-lab helping solve the mystery of what killed Lucy, the world’s most famous fossil (page 85). On a statewide level, our BEG is leading the
investigation into what’s causing earthquakes in Texas (page 58).
I am very proud of the accomplishments of our students, researchers and faculty.
Thank you for the support that makes it possible. Enjoy the Newsletter.
Sharon Mosher, Dean
Jackson School of Geosciences
2305 Speedway Stop C1160
Austin, TX 78712-1692