2021 was the summer of camps. I started off with the NE based all-girls STEAM camp, Camp Summergold, for a week. I had a blast being a counselor and watching the girls enjoy both science and engineering activities and typical camp fun like arts and craft, archery, music, and high ropes course.
From there, I went on to be an assistant instructor for the Sternberg Museum out of Fort Hays State University for their high school Colorado Dinosaur Field Trip. It was a sort of road trip/highlights of the major dinosaur sites of northwestern Colorado and northeastern Utah. We visited Dinosaur National Monument, Cleveland-Lloyd Quarry, Dinosaur Ridge, and other museums, practically following the Dinosaur Diamond Freeway (yes, that’s a real thing). We ended our trip with a visit to the Denver Natural History Museum and Denver Zoo. The students got to meet a lot of professional paleontologists and got a feel for longer camping and hiking trips.
After getting back from the field, I taught a high school virtual camp with the Sternberg Museum, focusing on Permian Paleontology. We looked at geology, modern analogs, changing climates and ecosystems, how to make a stratigraphic column, and how to read scientific papers.
This year, SVP was held in Brisbane, Australia, and I presented a talk about my ongoing research on multi-proxy models and examined how different datasets influence the outcome of the model. Before Brisbane, I went down to Sydney and talked with one of the exhibit staff at the Australian Museum about their Dinosaurs exhibit. The exhibit focuses on Southern Hemisphere and Australian dinosaurs, as well as discussing the various evidence on the transition from dinosaurs to birds and the extinction event at the end of the Cretaceous. Fun fact, there’s even opalized fossils!(https://australianmuseum.net.au/learn/australia-over-time/fossils/sites/lightning-ridge/) There was also an exhibit at the Australian National Maritime Museum on Mesozoic marine reptiles!
Once in Brisbane, I went on one of SVP’s shorter field trips, a day-trip around the greater Brisbane area. We learned about some fossil collecting history, walked around a small nature conservatory, and got to collect some plant fossils from the area. I also attended a Women in Paleontology workshop, which discussed problems and potential solutions to barriers for women and other minorities in science, academia, and paleontology.
In February of 2019, I got the amazing chance to travel to Israel as part of an international research group interested in the nature of science being portrayed in natural history museums. We met in Jerusalem to work on a manuscript introducing the concept and discussing how nature of science could be included in museums. We also visited the Bloomfield Science Center in Jerusalem, the Nature Park and Galleries Open Air Museum on Hebrew University’s campus, and the Steinhardt Natural History Museum in Tel Aviv, which has its own Zoology Museum. At each museum, we got the chance to talk with some of the staff about how they develop their exhibits.
A section of the open-air museum on Hebrew University campus, Jerusalem.
The Zoological Museum with the Steinhardt Museum in the background.
The front of the Steinhardt Museum, designed to look like Noah’s Ark.
An exhibit inside the Steinhardt, showing human impacts on the geography and landscape of Israel.
Started the school year off with SVP in Calgary, AB! As always, reconnected with old friends, made some new ones, and generally had a blast!! Also presented my own research and got to hear about other new research over the past year.
Last week was the SVP Annual Meeting in Salt Lake City, UT!! It was a great week of listening to new and up-and-coming research, making new connections, and of course catching up with the MSU gang!! Now that I’m back, I’ll be starting on my Master’s thesis and continuing to work on my research from last year!
After settling in back home, I’ve begun volunteering at Arizona Museum of Natural History!
I’m working on cataloguing mammal bones that the museum is assimilating from the collection they received from NAU. I’m working on fossils from the Bighorn Cave. Most of the fossils are from Ovis canadensis, or commonly known as bighorn sheep.
One degree down!! December 12, 2015 was the commencement ceremony for MSU’s Fall 2015 graduates. I now officially have my Bachelors of Science in Earth Sciences with an Honor’s Distinction Degree and a minor in Museum Studies. And of course I decorated my cap with a T-Rex. More pictures will come as the chaos from moving settles and they get downloaded from various cameras.
This week is Society of Vertebrate Paleontology in Dallas, TX!! I started the conference with presenting my poster Wednesday.
Wednesday night finished with the welcoming dinner at the Perot National History Museum, where we were able to wonder the halls of the museum and see the exhibits, one of which I was able to see like a hawk!
I was also one of the recipients of the Jackson School Travel Grant, which I’m so appreciative of!
I’ve spent today going to talks and meeting with a ton of interesting people, this week is turning out to be great!! Will keep you posted on the second half of the conference!!