Nikki Rumpca received a 2010 UWSP Undergraduate Education Initiative grant
($1,780) for field work in Iceland in summer 2010: “Soil development in
an active spreading ridge, Iceland.” Nikki is presenting results at the
AAG in Seattle April 2011 Nikki is considering schools to continue her
Liza Wernicke received a 2010 UWSP
Undergraduate Education Initiative grant of $1,060 to conduct Scanning
Electron Microscope and Electron dispersion analysis of blueschists in a
Precambrian subduction zone.
Michael Tanner, Geoscience Major graduating
in May 2011, has accepted employment in California working for the Green
Diamond Resource Company as a Geoscientist.
Bradley Kealiher (2011) completed an
internship during Fall 2010 with the United States Department of
State-Bureau of Political Military Affairs in Washington, DC. His
responsibilities included acting as liaison between the Defense Security
Cooperation Agency and the Department off State's Foreign Affairs
Liza Wernicke (above), a double major in
Physics and Geoscience, delivered the student address at the 2010 Winter
Commencement for the Colleges of Letters and Science and Natural
Corinna Neeb (second row, eighth from left)
presented a poster, GIS Maximizes Volunteer Contributions in Science and
Community Planning, at the Rotunda of the State Capitol at Madison in
May. While there, she personally discussed her public engagement work at
the GIS Center with Governor Jim Doyle.
Brooke Burich was one of eight students
selected nationally to participate in a National Science Foundation
Research Experience for Undergraduates internship, with the Dune
Undergraduate Geomorphology and Geochronology project, provided
first-hand experience in modern field and laboratory based
problem-solving techniques in the earth sciences. These included
hypothesis-driven field research at Whispering Sands in Wisconsin and
the Sand Hills in Nebraska, coupled with such laboratory analyses as
optically stimulated luminescence dating and ground-penetrating radar
data (collection below) in cooperation with the University of Nebraska
in Lincoln, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the University of
Other internships this year have included:
- Michael Broton, Jon Galloy, and Jonathan Winkelman with UWSP’s Small Business Development Center
- Benjamin Ebertz with the North Central Regional Planning Commission
- Jonathan Mineau with the Waupaca County Land Information Department
- Corinna Neeb with UWSP’s GIS Center
- Daryn Hardwick with the Sauk County Land Records Department
- Omar Muhyar with the Capital Area Regional Planning Commission
- Benjamen Stahlecker with the City of Wausau
Kylie Betzler, Rebecca Braunschweig, Nicole
Michiels, and Elizabeth Roden presented their human geography research
poster, “Community Structure and Wisconsin K-12 School Quality, School
Funding, and School Consolidations”, at the Association of American
Geographers national meeting in Washington DC during April. Sarah
Carriger, Janell Wehr, and Jesus Rehwinkel also presented their
geoscience/geoarchaeology poster, “Roche A Cri Petroglyphs: A Study in
Rock Art Weathering”, at the same conference.
Angela Eichler presented her paleoenvironment
research at the Geological Society of America’s national conference in
Branson Missouri during April. The poster, “Paleolimnological
Reconstruction of Drought Conditions from Max Lake, Vilas County,
Wisconsin”, was one of seven nationwide to win recognition with an award
for undergraduate research.
Nikki Rumpca of Woodbury, Minn., a soils and
geosciences double major who is studying with Kevin Hefferan, professor
of geology, is doing a soils and volcanic activity study near the
Eyjafjallajokull volcano that erupted in Iceland on May 11. Rumpca was
in Iceland a year ago and is now back in Iceland for the summer
preparing a report on data collected before and after the eruption. She
lives in Husadalur in Thorsmork.
“The ash has really covered much of the
vegetation, but there is some life coming back and greening up the
landscape—it's really amazing,” said Rumpca.
Liza Piltz of Stevens Point, a geosciences
and physics double major, is doing a SEM-EDS study on blue schist rocks
from Morocco. Her mentors this summer are Hefferan and Mike Zach,
assistant professor of chemistry.
Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) is used
for fine-grained materials that cannot be identified either with the eye
or a petrographic microscope. SEM occurs when an electron beam is
scanned across a sample's surface. A high resolution image can be
obtained because of the small diameter of the primary electron beam. The
image will therefore show the distribution of different chemical phases
in the sample. Detection and measurement of the energy permits
elemental analysis (Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy or EDS). EDS
can provide rapid qualitative or with adequate standards, quantitative
analysis of elemental composition with a sampling depth of 1-2 microns.
X-rays may also be used to form maps or line profiles, showing the
elemental distribution in a sample surface.