New Smithsonian Exhibit Reflects the Passion of SMU Professor and an Army of Student Fossil Hounds

SMU News Originally Posted: October 15, 2018 Sea Monsters Unearthed: Life in Angola’s Ancient Seas opens Nov. 9 at National Museum of Natural History Once the exhibit opens, “Sea Monsters Unearthed: Life in Angola’s Ancient Seas” will allow visitors to visually dive into the cool waters off the coast of West Africa as they existed millions of years ago when the continents of Africa and South America were drifting apart. It’s a unique opportunity to examine fossils of ancient marine reptiles and learn about the forces that continue to mold life both in out of the ocean. But the back story is just as fascinating: SMU Emeritus Professor of Paleontology Louis Jacobs and his SMU colleague Michael Polcyn forged a partnership with collaborators in Angola, [...]

By | 2018-10-17T09:52:32+00:00 October 17th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Events, Faculty News, Graduate News, Undergraduate News|Comments Off on New Smithsonian Exhibit Reflects the Passion of SMU Professor and an Army of Student Fossil Hounds

Q&A: Sea Monsters in Our Ancient Oceans Were Strangely Familiar

Smithsonian Magazine Originally Posted: September 18, 2018 Between 1961 and 2002, Angola was virtually inaccessible to scientists while the country struggled with war and civil unrest. Now, sixteen years after peace was achieved, never-before-seen fossils excavated from Angola’s coast will be on display in a new exhibit, called “Sea Monsters Unearthed,” which will debut at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History on November 9. In 2005, Louis Jacobs and Michael Polcyn, paleontologists at Southern Methodist University and collaborators on the exhibition, led the first major expedition in Angola since the acceptance of the plate tectonics theory in the mid-1960s. Dubbed Projecto PaleoAngola, the expedition looked to study the effects of the opening of the South Atlantic Ocean on life over the last 130 million [...]

By | 2018-09-18T10:17:12+00:00 September 18th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Q&A: Sea Monsters in Our Ancient Oceans Were Strangely Familiar

A new survey reveals that not only do business executives value college, they want students with skills associated with the liberal arts.

Inside Higher Ed Originally Posted: August 28, 2018 Public May Not Trust Higher Ed, but Employers Do  A new survey reveals that not only do business executives value college, they want students with skills associated with the liberal arts. Though public support for higher education seems to be waning, this skepticism doesn’t appear to extend to potential employers, who say they still have faith in colleges and universities, according to a new survey conducted on behalf of the Association of American Colleges & Universities. But while executives and hiring managers believe that institutions are teaching graduates the skills needed for entry-level jobs, they reported that students usually aren’t ready to be promoted. AAC&U commissioned the Washington, D.C.-based Hart Research Associates to survey two groups: 500 or so business [...]

By | 2018-08-28T10:01:16+00:00 August 28th, 2018|Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Earth Sciences, Economics, English, History, Mathematics, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Religious Studies, Sociology, Statistical Science, Undergraduate News, World Languages and Literatures|Comments Off on A new survey reveals that not only do business executives value college, they want students with skills associated with the liberal arts.

Fracking Wastewater Spikes 1,440% in Half Decade

EcoWatch Originally Posted: August 16, 2018 SMU geophysicist Zhong Lu was quoted for this article. Between 2011 and 2016, fracked oil and gas wells in the U.S. pumped out record-breaking amounts of wastewater, which is laced with toxic and radioactive materials, a new Duke University study concludes. The amount of wastewater from fracking rose 1,440 percent during that period. Over the same time, the total amount of water used for fracking rose roughly half as much, 770 percent, according to the paper published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances. "Previous studies suggested hydraulic fracturing does not use significantly more water than other energy sources, but those findings were based only on aggregated data from the early years of fracking," Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke's Nicholas [...]

By | 2018-08-20T08:02:16+00:00 August 20th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Fracking Wastewater Spikes 1,440% in Half Decade

Yellowstone Supervolcano Could Be an Energy Source. But Should It?

National Geographic Originally Posted: August 8, 2018 Yellowstone National Park could power the entire continental U.S. with clean energy. Maria Richards of SMU Geothermal Laboratory weighs in via National Geographic on why it remains untapped. The northwest corner of Wyoming is boiling. There, 10,000 hydrothermal features transform Yellowstone National Park into an alien world with searing waters and steaming vents—all fueled by a simmering supervolcano. While scientists agree that Yellowstone is not likely to erupt anytime soon, if and when it does, the event would be catastrophic. A massive magma chamber feeds this supervolcano, and an eruption would pack enough power to expel more than a thousand cubic kilometers of rock and ash at once. That would blanket most of the continental United States in debris and potentially plunge Earth into a volcanic [...]

By | 2018-08-09T08:06:48+00:00 August 10th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Yellowstone Supervolcano Could Be an Energy Source. But Should It?

Research and mentorship honored

SMU Magazine Originally Posted: July 2018 Paleobotanist Bonnie Jacobs, professor in the Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, has been named a Paleontological Society Fellow for her contributions to the field of Cenozoic paleobotany as well as her stellar mentorship of students and postdoctoral researchers. She was particularly lauded for her transformative research on the Cenozoic vegetation and climate of Africa. “The research I am working on with colleagues and students is aimed at understanding how tropical ecosystems in Africa came to be what they are today, and more specifically, how they were impacted in the past by global climate changes, first and foremost,” explains Jacobs. “I am always thrilled by the discovery of new fossils, but the most joyful, rewarding part of my work comes [...]

By | 2018-07-30T09:52:08+00:00 July 31st, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Research and mentorship honored

A Scientist’s Voyage From the Peruvian Amazon to Nordic Iceland

National Geographic Originally Posted: July 13, 2018   Andrés Ruzo is a graduate student in Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences in Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences. Geothermal scientist Andrés Ruzo is a restless spirit whose passion for science and adventure inspire him to always go further, dig deeper, and discover what’s next. In celebration of his thirst for endless exploration, National Geographic and Coors Light launched Ruzo on an epic journey and invited him to share his experiences with other explorers. In the first of four photo essays, follow Ruzo as he prepares for his trip and talks about what sparked his interest in the wild, rugged, and cold land of fire and ice—Iceland. Childhood experiences—like playing on volcanoes and hearing the legend of Peru's Boiling River (above)—sparked Andrés [...]

By | 2018-07-16T08:01:48+00:00 July 16th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News, Graduate News|Comments Off on A Scientist’s Voyage From the Peruvian Amazon to Nordic Iceland

Dedman College faculty retire with emeritus status

Forum Originally Posted: May 31, 2018 Congratulations to the following Dedman College faculty members who are retiring with emeritus status in 2017-2018 Alan S. Brown, Professor Emeritus, Psychology, 1974-2018 Louis L. Jacobs, Professor Emeritus, Paleontology, 1983-2018 Francisco Morán, Professor Emeritus, World Languages and Literatures (Spanish), 2003-2018 Wayne A. Woodward, Professor Emeritus, Statistical Science, 1981-2017 Read the full article here: Nineteen SMU faculty members retire with emeritus status in 2017-18

By | 2018-06-21T10:47:02+00:00 July 3rd, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Earth Sciences, Faculty News, Psychology, Statistical Science|Comments Off on Dedman College faculty retire with emeritus status

Paleobotanist Bonnie Jacobs Elected Fellow of Paleontological Society

Dedman College News Originally posted: June 15, 2018 Paleobotanist and Professor in the Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences Bonnie Jacobs has been named a Paleontological Society Fellow for her contributions to the field of Cenozoic paleobotany as well as her stellar mentorship of students and postdoctoral researchers. She was particularly lauded for her transformative research on the Cenozoic vegetation and climate of Africa. “The research I am working on with colleagues and students is aimed at understanding how tropical ecosystems in Africa came to be what they are today, and more specifically, how they were impacted in the past by global climate changes, first and foremost,” explains Dr. Jacobs. “I am always thrilled by the discovery of new fossils, but the most joyful, [...]

By | 2018-06-15T11:38:03+00:00 June 15th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on Paleobotanist Bonnie Jacobs Elected Fellow of Paleontological Society

Save the Date: Smithsonian to Exhibit SMU Paleontology Research

SMU Research Originally Posted: June 6, 2018 Save Nov. 9, 2018 on your calendar. That's when the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History opens a new exhibit on never-before-seen fossils from Angola. The never-before-seen fossils were discovered, excavated and prepared by SMU faculty and student researchers. They tell the story of how the South Atlantic Ocean formed millions of years ago, and provide clues to understand our planet's present and future. READ MORE Ancient “Sea Monsters” Reveal How the Ever-Changing Planet Shapes Life, Past and Present Never-Before-Seen Fossils From Angola Bring a Strange Yet Familiar Ocean Into View The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History will open a new exhibition Nov. 9, 2018 revealing how millions of years ago, large-scale natural forces created the conditions [...]

By | 2018-06-06T07:06:19+00:00 June 6th, 2018|Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News, Institute for the Study of Earth and Man|Comments Off on Save the Date: Smithsonian to Exhibit SMU Paleontology Research
Load More Posts