What's so interesting about geology is its large breadth of history — it's the physical history of Earth, not just traditional, written history.

Brian Moretti '18
Photo by Emily Paine, Division of Communications

"I actually found out about Bucknell by chance. I was playing lacrosse in high school, and while my uncle was traveling through Pennsylvania, he happened to buy a Bucknell lacrosse hat for me. I didn't know anything about the school, but after reading about the environmental studies program, I thought it would be a good fit. I ended up loving Bucknell after visiting for the first time and applied Early Decision.

"I came in thinking I was going to be an environmental studies major, but after taking Geology 203 with Professor Rob Jacob during my first year, I wanted to pursue geology more. I love how hands-on it is, and I've always been interested in rocks. One of my best experiences with the geology department was at the end of my sophomore year when I did research over the summer with two other students. It was an interesting study on glaciers in deglaciating alpine environments in Alaska and New Zealand. At the end of the summer, we were able to present our research at the Geology Society of America conference and gain firsthand experience with professionals in the field.

"Last summer I worked for the U.S. Forest Service in Aspen, Colo. Not only did I get to work in the forest all day, leading interpretive hikes, I also had the chance to teach people about the geology they were seeing. Most people think it's beautiful and take pictures of it, but they don't understand what actually happened in the area. What's so interesting about this field of study is its large breadth of history — it's the physical history of Earth, not just traditional, written history.

"Last semester, I took Planetary Geology, which taught us how to apply the geology we've learned about Earth to other planets to see what processes might have occurred in forming the landscapes. We also talked about possible life on other planets. For example, the moons of Saturn are thought to have life encased beneath its icy layers. There's still a lot more to learn about Earth, but I think it's also cool to think about other planets as well."

Brian is from Basking Ridge, N.J.

Posted November 2017

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