[unav_all] RESESS Summer Update!

Val Sloan sloan at unavco.org
Mon Aug 29 12:31:07 MDT 2011

Dear All, 

It has been an intense and successful summer with UNAVCO's RESESS internship, and we wanted to share some of it with you.  We were particularly honored and delighted to have the Director of NSF, Dr. Suresh, and Director of the Geosciences Directorate visit UNAVCO this summer and meet some of the interns; it was  inspiring for the interns (see photo below).  

RESESS plays one part in creating a diverse future geoscience workforce. Please encourage your minority students to apply for RESESS this winter, and consider recruiting from RESESS into your graduate program.  Let me know if I can be of any help along those lines.  

Val Sloan
sloan at unavco.org

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RESESS Update: Summer 2011

This year our 13 sensational RESESS interns hailed from Georgia, Florida, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Puerto Rico, and Colorado. They were lively, outgoing individuals who brought curiosity and enthusiasm to their work.

Interns conducted research with their science mentors at CU Boulder, USGS, NOAA, U. of Michigan, Shell Oil, and UNAVCO, on geophysics, seismology, paleoclimatology, and hydrology.

Cristina Lugo with mastadon bone at the Snowmastadon site in Colorado, where she worked with the USGS and Denver Museum of Nature and Science.

Interns were guided through the process of writing a paper on their research projects. Their weekly Writing Workshop included a lecture and guided peer-review session, as well as support in preparing talks and posters.

It was an intense experience that culminated in professional quality science presentations at the end-of-summer RESESS colloquium and poster session.

RESESS interns and SOARS protégés doing a team building activity in the first week.

Interns bonded during team-building activities and communication training. This included a Boulder scavenger hunt with protégés from our partner program, SOARS. Several informal social activities such as RESESS 'family' potlucks helped to foster a strong sense of group and mutual concern for each other.

Interns and their Projects

Jenna Lente and her science Mentor, Dave Mencin (UNAVCO), in Yellowstone National Park checking on a borehole strainmeter which has recorded unusual seismic events.

Luis Lliteras Montalvo presenting his work  evaluating of drilling events in the Haynesville and Bossier Shale, Magnolia, NW Louisiana, in his Shell Oil - RESESS internship.

Ashley Grijalva learning how to use GPS at UNAVCO prior to doing field work on the San Jacinto Fault with Sally McGill. This was through a SCEC-RESESS partnership. She modeled the slip rate with GPS data.

Calvin Johnson doing field work near Great Sand Dunes National Park, CO, on the subsurface "blue clay" layer, an aquitard, with the USGS.

Angel Torrens-Bonano standing over the Emerson Fault on a field trip with the Southern California Earthquake Center prior to doing his field work on the San Andreas Fault.

Christine Chesley (right) and her writing mentor Christine Puskas (UNAVCO) dicussing her model of how an earthquake in 1707 triggered the largest eruption of Mt. Fuji in Japan.

Science and Technology Training & Career Development

Jonathan Caine of the USGS (left) explaining a brittle fault zone on his structure field trip.

The RESESS program also included:

3 local geology field trips.
A weekend field camp focused on collecting and analyzing data.
Training on Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS), including scanning dinosaur footprints with Dr. David Phillips of UNAVCO, and on GPS with Dr. Mike Floyd of MIT.
A visit from RESESS alum, Emanuelle Feliciano, a Ph.D student at the University of Miami, who mentored the interns on RESESS, networking, graduate school, and science.
A class assignment on writing a résumé and statement of research interest.
A workshop on graduate school and career choices at the University of Colorado's Dept. of Geological Sciences.
The interns reported that they gained a great deal in doing these activities.

"RESESS not only has provided me the opportunity to do this research but has reassured me that I can do more after I graduate from college. Because of the environment of support and facilities, I am considering going to graduate school right after [college]. Thanks to RESESS I am considering going into a Masters program because I can do it!” – Breanna Skeets (Read her blog!), June 28, 2011

An Exciting Autumn Ahead

The 2011 interns have seized the opportunity to present their research at the following annual meetings:

3 at AGU: American Geophysical Union
7 at GSA: Geological Society of America
3 at NABGG: National Association of Black Geologists and Geophysicists
2 at SCEC: Southern California Earthquake Center
1 at SACNAS: Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans
1 at AISES: American Indian Science and Engineering Society

This totals 17 conference abstract submissions and the interns are extremely excited about presenting at their first conferences.

"I returned to Puerto Rico with a new perspective of my life. This experience has made me more mature and it has contributed to my professional and personal growth. I am not going to lie, I was afraid before starting this journey. Living alone in another [place] with another language were obstacles that I overcame. I made so many good friends and learned new things. This was the best summer of my life! -Cristina M. Lugo Centeno, Aug. 16, 2011

50 Ways to Say "Thank You"

Breanna Skeets and her science mentor, Holly Barnard, from CU Boulder.

We are indebted to the many dedicated people who mentored our interns this summer.

More than three dozen scientists, writers, and others provided many hours of guidance, feedback, and encouragement to our interns.

We thank you for making a huge difference in the lives of these young scientists.

Finally, this program wouldn't be what it is without the generous support of the National Science Foundation.  We appreciate value being placed on investing in a diverse future geoscience workforce.

If you have any feedback or questions, please feel free to contact me. If you would like more information on RESESS, please visit our web page or send me an email.

The 2011 RESESS cohort at Rocky Mountain National Park.


Val Sloan, Ph.D.
Program Director, 
RESESS Internship
sloan at unavco.org
303- 381-7488

6350 Nautilus Drive
Boulder, CO 80301-5554                                                             

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