To make students aware of Earth Science, the department of Physics and Geosciences created a week of festivities to celebrate Earth Science Week, an international event.
Dr. Thomas McGehee, coordinator of Geosciences said “The celebration of Earth Week gives students an opportunity to learn and appreciate Geology.”
Earth Science Week, October 13 through 18, was created to help the public gain a better understanding and appreciation for the Earth Sciences and to encourage stewardship of the Earth, according to earthsciweek.org.
Veronica Nieto, president of the Geosciences Club, said the Earth Science Week festivities are to increase awareness of geoscience.
“People don’t think geology is important but it’s everywhere. Minerals are in everything and that’s what we study. Especially in South Texas with the Eagle Ford Shale, everyone needs to know it’s everywhere,” Nieto said.
To start the week, members from the Geosciences Club and American Association of Petroleum Geologists visited Harrel Elementary School in Kingsville on Monday to talk about the affects of pollution and showed students how to make their own toothpaste.
On Tuesday, The departments of Physics and Geosciences held an open house from 6 to 8 p.m. to showcase its work to Texas A&M University – Kingsville students.
The open house included a geographic information system lab, a field geology exercise, paleontology display of a plesiosaur skeleton, other fossils and “tricks with light” by Dr. Mark Ford.
For the Fall Carnival on Wednesday, The Geosciences Club had a booth displaying gems and minerals.
Thursday brought two speakers to Hill Hall to give lectures on Geosciences issues.
John Metz, Warning Coordinator Meteorologist for the Corpus Christi National Weather Service, talked about severe weather and flood safety at 5:30 p.m.
Richard Parker, Manager of Geological Operations at Swift Energy, gave a lecture about the Eagle Ford Shale, focusing on new logging technologies to enhance fracking production rates.
On Friday, the Geosciences Club along with other organizations seeking community service, picked up trash all over campus from 3 to 5 p.m.
To finish the week, bougainvilleas plants were planted south of Sage and sixth street.
Dr. Brent Hedquist, assistant professor and faculty mentor for the Geosciences Club, said he organized the tree planting as part of earth week to help beautify the community.
Hedquist said that the plants were made available from the university, through a grant Service Learning Grant.
“The tree planting was made available to educate people on the benefits of having plants. These plants can actually help tower the temperature and provide shade while beautifying the area,” he said.
“We eventually want to make the area where we planted, into a park with benches and sidewalks,” Hedquist said of the club’s goals.
Hedquist said the club has previously planted palm trees in the area and oak trees in several different areas including the post office in Kingsville.
A tailgate with Geosciences Alumni from 3 to 6 p.m. was the last event in the week.
“People need to realize the importance of taking care of the Earth. You only have one Earth and its importance to make that aware and get students to appreciate it,” Hedquist.