april 2005 ISSUE

Co-chairs Recap Saskatoon Geological Conference


The University of Saskatchewan is proud to have hosted the 41st annual Western Inter-University Geological Conference, Jan. 6-9 at the Sheraton Cavalier Hotel in downtown Saskatoon. This student-run conference, which rotates through universities in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, is a means for undergraduate and graduate students to expand their knowledge of the geological sciences.

This year, over 230 enthusiastic undergraduate and graduate students from eight Western Canadian universities attended the three-day conference. Besides the University of Saskatchewan, the largest group of delegates came from the University of Alberta. Through technical sessions, poster displays, short courses and guest speakers, all students were provided with the unique opportunity to meet with new peers, industry delegates and professors.

The technical portion of the conference consisted of a number of industry and student talks, as well as poster sessions. We were pleased to have a number of industry representatives from a variety of backgrounds give presentations about new and exciting developments in their respective fields.

Through talks such as these, students had the opportunity to learn about in-depth topics that may otherwise be simply skimmed over in the classroom, as well as realize the expectations involved in becoming a professional. Our career fair also allowed students to approach industry professionals on a personal basis and receive answers to questions that they otherwise may have limited access to.

Many students also took the opportunity to share their knowledge through the presentation of talks and posters. Undergraduates, who made up about two-thirds of all the students there, and graduates alike were invited to present on their fields interest. Although all of the student presentations were impressive, only a few winners took home the coveted prizes.

Students not only had the opportunity to participate in the technical portion of our conference, but they also had the chance to experience a taste of Saskatchewan's extensive geology. Early morning tours to the Allan and Cory potash mines enjoyed much interest, as students were eager to get an underground view of the extensive Prairie Evaporite.

Tours to the new Canadian Light Source were also popular, as students learned about the unique state-of-the-art imaging facility. Events such as the Icebreaker Night and Banquet, and the Dance Night, provided a social atmosphere in which students further networked and shared geological knowledge.

Financial and educational sponsorship was fundamental in assisting the organizing committee's endeavor. The committee would like to extend a large thank-you to all those companies and organizations, such as our own Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Saskatchewan, which supported this vital conference. Through the invaluable commitment of such great sponsors, the Western Inter-University Geological Conference will continue to play a vital role in the continuing development of relations between students and their peers and industry representatives.

Next year's conference will be hosted by the University of Calgary, so be sure to watch for coming information.

The Winners

Undergraduate Poster — Chad Glemser, U of S: Stable Isotope Evidence of Drought Cyclicity in the Yucatan.

Graduate Poster — Aaron Diefendorf, U of S: Spatial Variation of Stable Isotope Values of Modern Irish Surface Waters.

Undergraduate Talk — Jana Hanova, U of C: An Analysis of the Eagle Butte Impact Structure ( Alberta).

Graduate Talk — Beverly Mack, U of M: Palesol Development in the Devonian Snipe Lake Reef Complex, West-Central Alberta.

Inaugural Canadian Sedimentology Research Group (of the GAC) for best Sedimentology Presentation — Beverly Mack, U of M.

Author Credits

2005 Co-Chairs
Western Inter-University
Geological Conference