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University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

NEWS RELEASE
News Bureau   Schofield Hall 201  Eau Claire, WI 54702
phone: (715) 836-4741
fax: (715) 836-2900
Geology Student
Wins National Award
MAILED: Dec. 13, 2000

          EAU CLAIRE — A University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire geology student received the Austin A. Sartin Poster Paper award at the national annual meeting of the Geological Society of America in Reno, Nev.
          In her poster paper titled “Clay Mineralogy of Till Units in Western Wisconsin,” senior Katie Thornburg, Spooner, presented the results of clay mineral analyses for glacial till samples collected by glacial geologists from western and central Wisconsin during the past 20 years. Thornburg did all of the lab work for the project — separating the clays, vacuum-mounting the samples on filter paper, scanning the samples using an X-ray diffractometer, and analyzing the results using advanced computer software — in the UW-Eau Claire geochemistry lab.
          Thornburg worked with Dr. Kent Syverson, associate professor of geology, and Dr. Robert Hooper, chair and professor of geology, on the project and poster paper. She began working on the project her freshman year and completed it this past spring. Syverson has been her research supervisor since the summer after her freshman year.
          Syverson said he was very excited for Katie when she won this award.
          “She has been a great help with my study of the glacial history of western Wisconsin funded by the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey,” Syverson said. “She has worked very hard on this project, and it is nice to see her gain this recognition.”
          Thornburg learned she had received the $100 award sponsored by Sigma Gamma Epsilon, the national earth science honor society, at GSA’s meeting in November.
          “I was very proud,” Thornburg said. “After all, two years of my life were invested into this project.”
          The Geological Survey of America Abstracts with Programs published an abstract of Thornburg’s poster paper. Thornburg also has presented her research at two regional GSA conferences as well as at two UW-Eau Claire Student Research Days.
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Janice B. Wisner
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 201
(715) 836-4741
newsbur@uwec.edu

Updated: Dec. 13, 2000