Welcome to the first edition of what we hope will become the annual Middlebury Geology Department newsletter! This has been a goal of ours for many years and transition from outgoing chair (Pete Ryan) to incoming chair (Jeff Munroe) has finally provided the necessary spark. There's certainly a lot going on in the Geology Department to tell you about. We added a new faculty member (Will Amidon, in 2010); we added a new research vessel on Lake Champlain (the R/V David Folger, in 2012); our students and faculty continue to conduct exciting collaborative research; and our recent graduating majors have completed some outstanding theses. In this newsletter you will find more information about all of these topics, and we hope you will enjoy catching up on all that is happening.
Another goal of this newsletter is to alert you that we’ll be asking for your help later this fall: it's been almost 10 years since the last time we seriously discussed and revamped the Geology Department curriculum, and the passing of time, combined with the ongoing college-wide assessment, has motivated us to once again look closely at the courses we offer in an attempt to identify where we might consider making changes. We realize that the best way to evaluate the successes and short-comings of our curriculum is to ask how it worked for all of you, therefore we will be sending you a link to a brief online survey that we hope you will take the time to complete. The mixture of quick questions, as well as spaces for optional longer responses, is intended to give you flexibility in conveying your answers. Yet even if you only have time to move through quickly, we are certain that your responses will be of use to us as we consider how to make the Geology Department at Middlebury vibrant and exciting for years to come.
If you haven’t already seen it, the College will be sending out a survey to all alumni sometime in September. Our separate Geology alumni survey will follow when the College survey closes, probably in late October. Thanks in advance for your help!
And, after asking your help with the survey, we would also like to invite you to a party! As you have probably already heard from the Office of the President, all geology majors are invited to a special ceremony during Homecoming Weekend dedicating the College's new research vessel, the R/V David Folger, on October 20, 2012. We hope you can join us for this special weekend.
Finally, we are happy to announce that the Geology Department now has a Facebook page! You can find it at Middlebury College Geology Department. Check it out and please "like" us so that we can keep you informed about future events.
We hope you enjoy this look into the Geology Department. Please consider sending us an update to include in the next newsletter, or information about any internship opportunities you may be able to offer our current students. You can reach us via email or phone, either individually or through the Department mailbox (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Jeff Munroe, on behalf of the Geology Department