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Texas A&M University and University of Haifa Expand Global Ocean Observatory and Education to the Mediterranean Sea

COLLEGE STATION, Texas and Haifa, Israel – Dec.14, 2015 – Texas A&M University and the University of Haifa announced today their plans to establish a major Mediterranean observatory to capitalize on the oceanographic and atmospheric strengths of the two institutions and build on existing teaching and research in the Gulf of Mexico.

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FROM THE DEAN

Dr. Kate Miller

Dear Friends,

Here on campus, students are done with exams,  about more than 100 Geosciences students received their diplomas at commencement this past Friday, many faculty members and students from all departments are just back from the presenting research results at the annual fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union, and the pace has slowed as we all turn our attention to the holidays, to family, and to friends.

As the stories in this newsletter attest, we have been busy.   Our 50th anniversary celebration in October, brought to light reminders of past accomplishments that have made this College great.  For an enjoyable retrospective, please have a look at the first issue of our new magazine, The Geoscientist.  I remain astounded by the prescience that President James Earl Rudder and his team had 50 years ago to distinguish the Geosciences from the other Sciences as he positioned the university to become one of national and international prominence.  All these years later, it is still rare at major universities to find the Geosciences all under one roof.  

Importantly, we are also looking to the future, and have completed a new strategic plan for the college, the one that will lead us to achieving the landmarks laid out in Vision 2020 (link) and our own college vision to lead in establishing the geosciences as the defining discipline of the 21st century.  Our plan focuses strongly on transforming what is already an outstanding education, by engaging students in more transformative experiences, in the field, in the lab, and abroad.  In response to advances in science and technology we will be initiating new degree programs such as the MOST degree discussed below and our new GIST undergraduate major that started in 2014 and now has 100+ majors.  I also expect great advance in interdisciplinary research as we push forward initiatives in the geospatial sciences, ocean observing, water resources, and unconventional hydrocarbon reservoirs, among many. 

To accomplish all this we will need to zealously pursue diverse ways to support our faculty, staff, and students.  Undoubtedly, we need the generous support of our former students and friends – you, to be a part of the University’s Capital Campaign, “Lead by Example” which will be in full swing in the new year.   

Amid all the festivities, the winter holidays are also a time of year to pause and reflect:  Am I doing enough to help others?  Is there more I could be doing to make an impact on my community and my world?  As Aggies and geoscientists, I see us as having a special vocation and responsibility to lead in being stewards of the planet and to help find solutions that assure the sustainability of all our natural resources.  Without these, we would not flourish as a community, as a society.   We have a unique perspective to lend – to make a positive impact.  Please join me, along with our faculty, staff and students as we begin a new year with high aspirations, purpose and the promise of new discoveries and innovation that benefits the greater good.  I look forward to the meaningful contributions we will make, together, in 2016. 

Happy Holidays,

Kate Miller
Dean


COLLEGE NOTES

2015 AGU Fall Meeting

More than 100 faculty, staff, and students from the College of Geosciences at Texas A&M attended the 48th annual meeting of AGU in San Francisco last week.

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Geosciences: 50 Years, More Than 10,000 Students, 1 College

The College of Geosciences celebrated its 50th anniversary on Oct. 1 during a gala reception and program featuring Texas A&M President Michael Young, former dean of geosciences, Robert Duce and geosciences former student, Stuart Burbach '77. More than 300 students, former students, friends, faculty and staff gathered together to celebrate a rich history and look towards a bright future.

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2015 Faculty Awards

As 2015 comes to a close, we reflect on the hard work and accomplishments made by our faculty and staff. Not only has it been 50 years of the College of Geosciences – it’s also been 50 years of continuous dedication and hard work by the people within this college. We would like to take the opportunity to recognize and celebrate the contributions which have been made throughout this momentous year.

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NEWS

164 Gulf Sites Named For Aggies

It might soon be called the Gulf of Mexico at Texas A&M.  A recent batch of underwater features in the Gulf have been named for Texas A&M University people or affiliations, and now total 164, according to figures from the U.S. Board on Geographic Names.

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Air and Water: Geosciences experts speak at Texas Tribune Festival

Three professors in the College of Geosciences are speakers at the Fifth Annual Texas Tribune Festival.

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New Program in Geosciences Triples Enrollment

In just one short year, enrollment has increased by 170% in a popular new geotechnology program. 

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Geographer Heads International Organization

Sarah Bednarz has been elected as president of the American Association of Geographers.

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Leading the geosciences as the defining discipline of the 21st century

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