Th@U to Feature Talk on Careers for Geologists


The next Thursdays @ the U lecture presentation will feature geologist Dr. Kent M. Syverson February 13. This presentation will be held from 12:30 – 1:20 p.m. in the Blue Hills Lecture Hall at UW-Barron County in Rice Lake.  All series presentations are open to the public free of charge.


Dr. Syverson is a professor and department chair in the Department of Geology at UW-Eau Claire.  His topic is “STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) Jobs in Geology: From Frac Sand Mining to Environmental Consulting.”   He has been at UW-Eau Claire for 22 years and received the 2012 UW-EC Excellence in Teaching Award.  He has also been a frac sand consultant in the State of Wisconsin for more than five years.


Dr. Syverson stated, “Geologists help people avoid natural hazards, obtain natural resources such as iron and frac sand, and prevent ground-water contamination.”  He went on to note that geology has been in the news frequently in Barron and Chippewa counties during the past five years as the industrial sand industry has expanded into the region.   Industrial sand operations are large, and environmental geologists working at firms such as Cooper Engineering (Rice Lake) and SEH (Chippewa Falls) have spent much time trying to minimize the impacts of sand mining in the region.  Hydrogeologists with the Wisconsin Geological Survey are studying the impact of sand mining and agricultural irrigation practices on ground water in Chippewa County.  Also, geologists employed by the Wisconsin DNR are in charge of monitoring companies in all industries to make sure environmental regulations are being followed.


The next Thursdays @ the U presentation will be on February 20 featuring Scott Hodek, Regional Economist, and Dave Armstrong, Barron County Economic Development Director, speaking on “Trends for the Future of Work in Barron County."

The Thursdays @ the U Lecture Series is sponsored by the UW-Barron County Foundation.  For more information, contact the campus at 715-234-8176.


Barb Lang