MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIR
March 7, 2019
Welcome to the 33rd Annual Department of Geological Sciences Colloquium – Earth, Environment, and Energy for Everyone = E4. The event is made possible participation of students, faculty and alumni, especially the generous support of James Cearley who has provided most of the funding for this year’s Colloquium. We are particularly pleased to enjoy the participation of alumni who take time to judge talks & posters as well as interacting with students. The student organizers deserve our thanks and praise for putting in time and effort to make this a successful event. Organizers Georgina Rodriguez Gonzalez, Tony Garcia, Labdan Alqahtani, Leslie Bernal Lopez, Erik Urquidi, Victor Garcia and David Lankford-Bravo all deserve special accolades for leading the effort. I also want to thank the donors who have contributed, so that we may furnish refreshments and prize money along with this event. We have over 15 abstracts submitted this year, so we look forward to a vibrant and engaging event. The Colloquium will kick off with the keynote presentation of Dr. Anthony Salem, Shell Geologist on “Developing the Wolfcamp Shale in the Permian Basin and the role of geoscientists: A production geologist’s perspective”.
The Department of Geological Sciences is proud to report that at the writing of this letter, the 2019 UTEP Imperial Barrel Award (IBA) team is set to compete in the Southwest Section IBA 2019 Semifinal competition in (Dallas), TX on March 30, 2019. We cheer on the team to the worldwide competition in May 2019. The team is made up of Ph.D. students Jenna Faith and Jordan Caylor and M.Sc. students, Hanah Bayer Draper, Derek Scott, and Julia Astromovich, mentored by Dr. Rip Langford.
The Department of Geological Sciences graduate achievements have produced accomplished students in academics and in scientific research. Ph.D. student Marisol Dominguez earned a coveted Outstanding Student Paper Award at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in Washington, D.C. Marisol’s work entitled: “Global Analysis of the Hydrologic Sensitivity to Climate Variability using a Budyko Approach”, is also the work attributed to an NSF Graduate Student Fellowship, which she was awarded last year.
In other graduate student news for 2018-19, M.Sc. Geology student, Garrett Goff was awarded a SIPES Texas scholarship from the Midland, Texas Chapter. Another M.Sc. Geology student, Jacoup Roiz was awarded the Diana Natalicio Environmental Internship for 2019. Tony Garcia, Ph.D. Geology student and Sergio Macias, an M.Sc. Geology student will be interns with Freeport McMoRan, an international mining company. In addition, M.Sc. Geology students including Hanah Bayer Draper and Rafael Delfin will intern with Anadarko Petroleum Corporation and Chevron Oil & Gas Exploration and Production Companies. M.Sc. Geology student, Alex Garcia is a Pathways intern at the NASA Kennedy Space Center and future intern at Anadarko Petroleum Corporation. Alex was awarded a Society of Exploration Geophysicist scholarship in 2018. Ph.D. Graduate students Amanda Labrado, Rachelle Kernen, Juan Ochoa Chavez, Lorraine Negron, Nathan Reade, Alondra Soltero, Hanah Bayer Draper and Garrett Goff all received Hunt and Rowling Scholarships for 2018-19. Victor H. Garcia received a Field Experience Award as well for 2018-19. Geology student, Rachelle Kernen had a number of notable accomplishments including several scholarships and travel to Australia to present her research. Rachelle was the AAPG Salt Tectonic Session & Student Volunteer Chair for the annual meeting in May 2019 and attended a Strategic Negotiation Workshop at AGU in 2018. She is also continues to be active in AWG and received the PinkPetro GRIT Nomination in 2018. A couple of our graduating students also look forward to employment after graduation with Pioneer Natural Resources and ExxonMobil Corporation.
Congratulations to undergraduate Amaris Bustamante for receiving the James H. & Minnie Edmonds UTEP Presidential Scholarship and the Texas Grant. Congratulations to Elena Eguiarte for receiving the Judith K. Solis Memorial Scholarship and the Freeport-McMoRan Summer 2019 Internship. Congratulations to Jason Pizzi for receiving the LSAMP SCUBA Program Internship Summer 2019 conducting coral reef research in Roatan, Honduras. In addition, congratulations to Autumn Williams for earning an internship with the EPWG Desalination Plant. Miranda Govea and Angela Trejo wer awarded the Mickey Leland TCEQ internship. Miranda Govea received the best undergraduate presentation for Physical Sciences in the COURI symposium. The John and Vida White Endowment Fund is awarded to Carolina Guijarro. Nohemi Perales received a summer internship to do research in Silverspring, Maryland from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The D.B. Smith Memorial Scholarship Fund recipients this 2018-2019 academic year include the following undergraduates, Rachael Apodaca, Rachael Hill, Joshua Lewis, and Karen Valles. The W.P. Nash Fund is awarding this 2018-2019 year for their dedication to academics, the following undergraduates: Amaris Bustamante, Carolina Cisneros, Victoria Moreno, Paola Soto-Montero, Justice Davis, Angela Trejo, Nohemi Perales, Gerald Strenke, Mia Ramirez, Ariana De La Hoya, Martin Garcia, Hannah Keane, Autumn Williams, and Leslie Herrera.
The Rowling Reese Scholarship is awarding this 2018-2019 year to following undergraduates funds: Briana Salcido, Emery Hansen, Kenneth Singh, Sophia Terrazas, Nohemi Valenzuela, Guadalupe Alvarez Rodriguez, Nicholas Howell, and Marcela Herrera Alvarez.
The department is looking forward to the many great research and internship experiences for the UTEP Geoscience undergraduates this coming Summer and Fall.
Looking forward to another outstanding year as more students start to learn about their summer opportunities and make future plans after graduation!