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Faculty Research

Geology faculty are involved in research with students and collaborators from outside Middlebury. Most of the research is funded by grants from outside organizations, principally the National Science Foundation. Below are brief descriptions of their research interests.

Dave West

Broadly speaking, Dave's research is focused on understanding the distribution, in time and space, of deformational and thermal events during mountain building processes.  Dave is basically a "hard-rock field geologist" whose research involves bedrock geologic mapping, structural analysis, igneous and metamorphic petrology, and thermochronology.  Most of his research to date has been directed towards unraveling the ancient plate tectonic history of the northern Appalachian mountains. Get more information at Dave's website.

Jeff Munroe

In 1996 he began a research collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service in northern Utah that continues to this day.  Part of this work formed the basis of his Ph.D. dissertation, also at the UW-Madison, studying the glacial and post-glacial history of the Uinta Mountains.  Since coming to Middlebury in 2001 he has continued his work in Utah and has developed additional research studying environmental change in northeastern Nevada, glacier retreat in Glacier National Park, and the evolution of lake environments and mountain soils in northern Vermont. See more about Jeff's research at his website.

Pat Manley

Pat has a very active research program, including research on Lake Champlain sediments as well as Holocene paleoclimate research in the North Atlantic and along the bays and fjords of Antarctica.

Pete Ryan

Primary areas of research include (1) the mineralogy and geochemistry of soil evolution in the moist tropics of Costa Rica with a focus on reaction pathways, mechanisms, kinetics and geological implications, and (2) the relationships among trace metals and phyllosilicates (clay minerals) in soils and bedrock; recent projects have focused on origins of naturally-derived arsenic, uranium and other trace metals in bedrock water wells in Vermont.

Tom Manley

Tom's main research is in the hydrodynamics of Lake Champlain and the Buffalo River. This work has management implications and is often used by municipalities in how best to preserve and keep Lake Champlain healthy.

Ray Coish

Ray's research is mainly in the area of geochemistry of metamorphosed igneous rocks in the northern Appalachians. Focus has been on metamorphosed mafic rocks and Devonian granitic bodies from Vermont. Other research interests have been in Tertiary volcanic rocks in British Columbia. More information is available at his website.



Department of Geology

McCardell Bicentennial Hall
276 Bicentennial Way
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753