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Jenny Winch and Jaime Potter are both working on a research project with Dr. Mary Roden-Tice, studying the uplift history of the Adirondacks and New England, and learning a lot about themselves in the process.
Having already earned a Bachelor's degree in Environmental Science from Plattsburgh State, Jenny is now pursuing a Master of Science in Teaching Degree. She took some geology classes, and to her surprise, she enjoyed it so much that she is now earning a double major: in Geology and environmental science. As if that was not enough, Jenny will soon be a certified teacher!
Jaime Potter, a Junior from Carthage, New York, was attracted to Plattsburgh State's geology program because of its location near the Adirondacks. She also liked the campus size. "It's small enough that I see many familiar faces, but big enough that I'm always meeting new people."
"Taking classes with Mary Roden-Tice has been great," Jenny says. "In most of our classes we're the only females so seeing Mary and all that she's done is inspiring. Getting to do this research with her has also been a great opportunity. We can find out what it's really like to do research before we graduate. She has shown us all aspects of research, from beginning to end, not just the prep work."
"A close group is often formed among students of the same major," Jaime says.
"We start out in the same classes and continue on through the major together. There's always someone there to work on projects or study for tests with. Going out into the field and not just learning in a lecture hall lets us interact and discuss ideas and perspectives. We also look to each other for help when we have questions. The faculty is always there for you if you have a problem too."
"Growing up I never thought I was a science person," Jenny says, "but now that I've participated in research, I've discovered that I am a scientist! I have lived here in the Adirondacks for 11 years and have always enjoyed the scenery while I'm hiking, but now I can look at look it beyond the superficial and see what's going on below the surface."
Jaime says, "There is a lot of opportunity to go out into the field. You get to see the rock formation's structure for yourself instead of just learning it in a book. I learn more when I get to do things first hand too. The Geology program offers a big variety of classes so you can study lots of different areas in geology. We also have a good variety of equipment and some that no one else in the area has. At the Miner Institute, one of our facilities, classes are all out in the field, offering some intense fieldwork."
Jaime and Jenny will be attending a special 3 week course at Yale this summer to learn about (U-Th)/He method of dating geological specimens.
Only six universities were selected to participate and SUNY Plattsburgh was the only public university invited.
Jenny and Jaime were chosen to go because of their outstanding work with Dr. Roden-Tice. They are excited about going not only because this method of dating will add yet another dimension to their research project, but also provides the opportunity to meet students and professors from other colleges. They will even get to try the technique on some of their samples.
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