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FROM THE DEPARTMENT HEAD  

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Dear Alumni, current students, faculty, and staff:

Happy New Year to all at the beginning of 2017! Last year was a big year of change for the Department of Geology and Geophysics as we completed our undergraduate curriculum revision and it will begin in Fall of 2017. We are seeing the effects of lower oil prices as our undergraduate numbers move downward from ~ 560 in 2014 to 470 in Fall 2016, we think we will level out somewhere between 300-400 students in the next few years as we still have many majors joining us for oil and gas, but also for environmental, engineering, and hydrology. Even though our numbers are declining we are expecting to teach almost 150 students field camp in five separate field camps this coming summer in Utah, Colorado, and Montana!

Last year we almost fully integrated all of the nine new faculty members we have hired in the last four years into our teaching, research, and service missions. The fall led to a number of personnel changes as Tom Olszewski moved to the US State Department, John Pantano stepped down as the Director of the Chevron Center for Research Excellence, and Carlos Dengo is stepping down as Director of the Berg-Hughes Center. We are currently searching to fill these positions and an additional position in Unconventional Resources and hope to have new people in these positions beginning this spring. In this issue of the newsletter we will introduce you to Bobby Reece, a geophysics professor in the department, to Dawn Spencer the Program Coordinator for the Berg-Hughes Center, and some stories about things going on in our department.

Instead of the three separate alumni functions I held in San Antonio, Dallas, and Houston last year I am planning to hold a single large alumni gathering in conjunction with the AAPG’s 100th year Annual Meeting in Houston April 2-5, 2017. As the time and location for this event firm up we will put this information on the Department’s website and send it to you electronically. Food and drinks will be provided and I hope that you will come out to meet Cara Milligan the College’s development officer, some of our new faculty members talking about their research, and me discussing the outlook of the department and plans for the next year. I look forward to seeing you the next time you make it to College Station and I hope you have an outstanding 2017.

All the best,
Mike Pope



Faculty

Peter Knappett published in Nature Communications

Peter Knappett published in Nature Communications

The current issue of Nature Communications features an article about the work of Dr. Peter Knappett, a Texas A&M assistant professor of hydrogeology.

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Dr. Bobby Reece

Dr. Bobby Reece

Background on Dr. Bobby Reece, one of the Department's geophysics professors.

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Dr. Brent Miller Research

Dr. Brent Miller Research

Dr. Brent Miller, the department’s geochronologist, uses his research of zircon dating to date the Earth

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Department News

50th Anniversary of the Center for Tectonophysics

50th Anniversary of the Center for Tectonophysics

This year, 2017, marks the 50th anniversary for the Center for Tectonophysics.

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Fall 2016 AGU Meeting

Fall 2016 AGU Meeting

The department sent a record-breaking number of undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty to attend AGU, as well as present their research.

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First-Semester Seminar Class

First-Semester Seminar Class

A new component of our undergraduate curriculum is the first-semester seminar class.

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New Computers for Computational Seismology Lab

New Computers for Computational Seismology Lab

Halbouty Room 65 serves as the Computational Seismology Lab for the Department of Geology and Geophysics

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Meet Dawn Spencer

Meet Dawn Spencer

Meet Dawn Spencer, CAP-OM, the Berg-Hughes Center Program Coordinator

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Alumni Meeting at AAPG Conference in Houston

Alumni Meeting at AAPG Conference in Houston

We invite you to join Dr. Mike Pope and other representatives from the department as we celebrate 100 years of AAPG and our Aggie spirit.

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Geology & Geophysics 2016 Holiday Party

Geology & Geophysics 2016 Holiday Party

Faculty, Graduate students, and Staff enjoyed the 2016 Holiday Party hosted by the Department of Geology & Geophysics.

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Accolades

Dr. Hongbin Zhan Receives Dean's Distinguished Achievement Award for Faculty Excellence in Research

Dr. Hongbin Zhan Receives Dean's Distinguished Achievement Award for Faculty Excellence in Research

Congratulations to Geology & Geophysics Professor, Dr. Hongbin Zhan on being awarded the Dean’s Distinguished Achievement Award for Faculty Excellence in Research.

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Kaytan Kelkar wins 2016 AGU Data Visualization Storytelling Competition

Kaytan Kelkar wins 2016 AGU Data Visualization Storytelling Competition

Kaytan Kelkar, a geology graduate student, wins grand prize at the 2016 AGU Data Visualization Storytelling Competition

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Seventh Annual Berg-Hughes Research Symposium takes place at Annenberg

Seventh Annual Berg-Hughes Research Symposium takes place at Annenberg

The Seventh Annual Berg-Hughes Research Symposium took place at the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center on October 11, 2016 with great success.

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Gordon P. Eaton Chosen to Receive the 2016 Michel T. Halbouty Medal

Gordon P. Eaton Chosen to Receive the 2016 Michel T. Halbouty Medal

The College of Geosciences at Texas A&M University is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2016 Michel T. Halbouty Geosciences Medal, Dr. Gordon P. Eaton.

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Ernest Mancini ’74 receives 2016 Marcus Milling Legendary Geoscientist Medal

Ernest Mancini ’74 receives 2016 Marcus Milling Legendary Geoscientist Medal

Congratulations to former professor and Ph.D. student Dr. Ernest A. Mancini ‘74 on being selected as the recipient of the 2016 Marcus Milling Legendary Geoscientist Medal.

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Bobby Reece selected as Montague-CTE Scholar

Bobby Reece selected as Montague-CTE Scholar

Congratulations to Dr. Bobby Reece on being selected as the 2016-2017 Montague-CTE Scholar for the College of Geosciences!

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Grad students place 2nd at Global EAGE competition

Grad students place 2nd at Global EAGE competition

A team of graduate students from Texas A&M University’s Departments of Geology & Geophysics and Petroleum Engineering competed against six other schools in the global European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers 2016 Field Challenge in Vienna, Austria.

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Raquel Granados-Aguilar becomes only the 2nd TAMU student to receive the P.E.O. Peace Fellowship

Raquel Granados-Aguilar becomes only the 2nd TAMU student to receive the P.E.O. Peace Fellowship

Congratulations to Geology & Geophysics Ph.D student Raquel Granados-Aguilar on being awarded the P.E.O. Peace Fellowship.

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Trips

Carbonate Rocks Field Trip

Carbonate Rocks Field Trip

Carbonate Rocks class (GEOL 623) composed of graduate students on a trip to Southeastern New Mexico and West Texas.

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Giving

Department’s Field Camp Endowment Goal

Department’s Field Camp Endowment Goal

Whether you make an impact by supporting the annual fund, a major gift for academic or high impact learning programs, or by establishing an endowment through a planned giving strategy, your support is critical.

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