Earth Sciences professor receives highest Canadian geology award

A University Research Professor has received national recognition from the Mineral Deposits Division of the Geological Association of Canada.

Hundreds of 560-million-year-old fossils discovered in Upper Island Cove garden

A newly uncovered fossil site in Conception Bay North is one of the most exciting discoveries in the province since Mistaken Point.

Gem exploration may become cheaper, easier: Earth Sciences researcher

Gem exploration may become cheaper and easier thanks to work taking place in Memorial’s Faculty of Science.

Researchers in the faculty’s Department of Earth Sciences developed a new method of analyzing fine-grained sediment.


Earth Sciences hosts second Marie Skłodowska-Curie researcher

The Department of Earth Sciences is hosting its second prestigious Marie Skłodowska-Curie Post-doctoral Global Fellowship recipient in recent years.



Earth Sciences grad students create record of Upper Island Cove fossils

For the past three years, a team of paleontologists in the Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, have been conducting geoconservation at one of the most unique fossil sites in the province.


Preserving Canada's ecosystems vital to climate action, expert panel finds

An expert panel, which included Earth Sciences professor Dr. Sue Ziegler, has released its report assessing the extent to which nature-based climate solutions can help Canada meet its greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction targets.

President's Awards a chance to celebrate community

President Vianne Timmons honoured the exceptional and exemplary at the 2022 President’s Awards on Wednesday, Nov. 30.

Winners from the Faculty of Science include Dr. Joshua Rash, Psychology, President's Award for Outstanding Research; Dr. Kurt Gamperl, Ocean Sciences and Dr. Duncan McIlroy, Earth Sciences/Bonne Bay Aquarium and Research Station, University Research Professor; Dr. David Churchill, Computer Science, President's Award for Outstanding Teaching (Faculty) and Dr. Rick Goulding, Physics and Physical Oceanography and Yellow Martin, Psychology, President's Award for Exemplary Employees - Champion of Service.


Federal grants open doors to discoveries, collaborations and training

Breakthroughs in everything from improvements to prosthetic hands to the identification of emerging environmental pollutants.

Six of the seven Research Tools and Instruments (RTI) grants provided by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Council (NSERC) through its 2022 Discovery Research Programs Competition to researchers at Memorial were in the Faculty of Science.


Students, staff and faculty honoured at Faculty of Science awards

The Faculty of Science held its annual Dean’s Awards Ceremony recently, recognizing the top 10 per cent of its students.

In addition, the awards honour the service, scholarship and teaching of faculty and staff.


More than $285,000 in federal investment for high-performance research infrastructure

Three research teams in the Faculty of Science are kicking off the fall semester on a high note.

They have secured a total of $286,834 in funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) for cutting-edge scientific tools and equipment.

The investment will enhance research facilities and labs with sophisticated infrastructure for studies broadly focused on mineral exploration, climate change and nanoparticles.

Professor receives national award for mining research

A Memorial professor has received national recognition for his "game-changing" research in the mining industry. 

Dr. Stephen Butt, an engineering professor cross-appointed with the Department of Earth Sciences, is the recipient of the 2022 Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering (CSChE) Award in Design and Industrial Practice.


Memorial University earns top grades in global academic ranking

Memorial is the only Canadian university included as one of the world’s best for the study for marine/ocean engineering in an annual publication of world university rankings — and it’s the fifth year in a row to do so.

Memorial places 38 among the top 50 universities as part of the ShanghaiRanking Consultancy’s 2022 Global Ranking of Academic Subjects (GRAS) in the category.

Thinking critically about past, present and future technological innovations

The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences’ (HSS) new certificate in the history and philosophy of science and technology is of broad interest to students of science, engineering, medicine, humanities and social sciences.

The program will challenge students to think critically and analytically about the consequences of past, present and future technological innovations on human existence, and the world we inhabit.


Nearly $8 million invested to accelerate diverse research discoveries

Memorial researchers, including those in the Faculty of Science, have secured nearly $8 million in competitive funding for research projects ranging from childhood amnesia to ocean biodiversity to renewable energy systems.

The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) announced the results of its 2022 Discovery Research Programs competition on June 23.

In total, NSERC is investing $7,900,226 at Memorial.


Earth Sciences alumni give students unique look beneath the sea floor

Students in an Earth Sciences class had a rare opportunity recently to use geophysical data to look beneath the sea floor.

A group of visiting scientists from PanGeo Subsea led hands-on demos with the Seismic and Potential Field Methods in Geophysics (EASC 3170) class using data collected by the company’s unique acoustic imaging technology.

Dr. Luke Beranek and former MSc student Alex Hutter awarded the CSPG Medal of Merit

Dr. Luke Beranek and former MSc student Alex Hutter were awarded the Medal of Merit from the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists for the best paper related Canadian Petroleum Geology for 2021.

A day of family fun and education under the blue whale skeleton

On Saturday, May 14, everyone is invited to an open house event that will take place under and around the blue whale skeleton that hangs in Memorial's new Core Science Facility.

Come learn the story of the whale skeleton and take part in interactive learning opportunities, and have lots of fun along the way.

Faculty of Science holds interdisciplinary research conference

The Faculty of Science held its first interdisciplinary research conference April 8-9.

Scientific Endeavours in Academia (SEA) brought together undergraduate and graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and faculty from across the faculty’s nine departments and five interdisciplinary graduate programs.


Dr. Kim Welford receives Award

Dr. Kim Welford was recently awarded The Dean of Science Distinguished Emerging Scholar Award, which was established in 2021. 



Earth Sciences MSc graduate shares 2021 PDAC award

MUN Earth Sciences M.Sc. graduate Sherri Dunsworth shares PDAC award for 2021. Many MUN EASC B.Sc. graduates also worked on this project.


OP-ED -- Critical minerals: Will N.L. seize a 'once-in-a-century' opportunity to help build a better world

On March 11 the federal minister of Natural Resources, our very own Seamus O’Regan, announced Canada’s list of 31 critical minerals (not to quibble, but they are really elements; minerals are composed of elements).

Other G-7 nations and the European Union have developed their own sets of critical minerals. For example, the U.S. has 35 minerals deemed critical to U.S. security and economy, and the EU defines a list 30 critical raw materials.



Undergraduate wins 3rd place at PDAC Colloquium

Congratulations to Kallie Stone who won 3rd place in the Undergraduate Category at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Minerals Colloquium this year on Black Smoker Fluid Fluxes at the Niua South Seafloor Hydrothermal Vent Field, Tofua-Kermadec Arc.


Remote Roundup discusses Canada’s role in the green economy

Professor Stephen Piercey presented on Canada’s role in the green economy at the AME Roundup conference.  For more information, please read the article by Carl A. Williams in the Northern Miner.

Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship Recipient Joins Memorial

Dr. Caroline Lotout, a recipient of a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Global Fellowship funded by the European Union, has arrived at the Department of Earth Sciences for a two-year research term. Her research project CHRONOTEC (Conditions and duration of High tempeRature metamOrphism in large hot orogens assessed through petrochronolOgy: insights from Grenville TECtonics) is carried out in collaboration between Memorial University of Newfoundland the Petrographic and the Geochemical Research Center of the French National Center for Scientific Research (Nancy, France), with Dr. A. Indares (MUN) and Dr. E. Deloule (CRPG-CNRS) as supervisors.



Return to campus update

The initiative to return staff to campus will resume in the new year, based on public health directives and COVID alert levels. 

Changing Forests

Dr. Lukas Kohl, a recent graduate under the supervision of Dr. Susan Ziegler, is principal author on a recent paper published in the journal Global Change Biology.  Read more about it here in the Gazette.

University Research Professor

Dr. Stephen Piercey, Department of Earth Sciences, has been named University Research Professor in recognition of his seminal scientific contributions as an economic geologist, groundbreaking research discoveries and raising Memorial’s worldwide reputation for visionary earth sciences research.

Delayed winter 2021 semester start

The official start date of winter 2021 classes in most programs at the St. John's campus, Grenfell Campus and Marine Institute will be moved to Monday, Jan. 11, 2021.


EASC students win awards at the AUGC

Congratulations to our students who won awards at the recent Atlantic Universities Geologic Conference.  Lindsay Oldham received the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists Award for her poster "Physical Stratigraphy and Provenance of Middle Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous Adventdalen Group sandstones, central Spitsbergen, Svalbard” which is given for the best poster related to petroleum geology at AUGC.  Marie Flanagan received the Imperial Oil Best Poster Award for her poster "Magnetics Study within the Valentine Lake Gold Property, Newfoundland and Labrador" which is given to the best overall poster at the AUGC.  Sarah Greene received the Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists Award for her paper "Geophysical Characterization Study of robin Hood Bay Landfill, St. John's, NL" which is given to the best geophysics paper at AUGC.  

Safe, thoughtful and engaging research continues on critical studies

If the pandemic has proven anything, it’s the creativity and resilience of our researchers.

Over the last several months, members of our research community have re-envisioned, modified and found ways to (safely) continue their activities and studies, complying with public health and university guidelines.


Return to campus postponed

Due to rising cases of COVID-19 throughout Newfoundland and Labrador at this time, Memorial University is postponing the return to campus initiative for non-academic staff scheduled for this week.

This applies to all campuses and locations. More information will be shared as it becomes available.

Reminders for employees gradual return to campus

All employees should already have discussed their gradual return to campus plans with their supervisor starting the week of Nov. 23.

Winter fees

Memorial students will not be charged the Distance Education Administration Fee and Recreation Fee for the upcoming semester.

Return to campus

Memorial University is adopting a gradual approach to bringing staff back to campus.

Demonstrating hydrothermal fluid circulation in 3D

A Memorial doctoral student has created an empirical 3D model to demonstrate how hydrothermal fluid circulates beneath the seafloor.

Chris Galley, who is under the supervision of Drs. Colin Farquharson and John Jamieson in the Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, achieved the first-time feat.



Update on international students

Memorial approved to welcome new international students, oversee travel and isolation requirements

Update to employees on Memorial's COVID response

The following message is being sent on behalf of Dr. Mark Abrahams as chair of Vice-Presidents Council.

Earlier this week, Memorial announced the winter 2021 academic semester will remain primarily remote. Many employees who continue to work from home may wonder what it means for you. As well, units may be considering how this announcement impacts operations.


Update on winter 2021 semester

Memorial will continue to operate in a primarily remote teaching and learning environment for the winter 2021 semester. This decision was taken in a special meeting of the university Senate today. Read more in the Gazette.

Help limit the spread: Memorial endorses COVID Alert app

Recently the province of Newfoundland and Labrador adopted the new COVID Alert app to help prevent the spread of the virus. The app is designed to let Canadians know whether they may have been exposed to COVID-19. Memorial is endorsing the app and encourages faculty, staff and students to voluntarily download the app for free to help protect yourself and others.


Method of Course Delivery Fall 2020

Welcome to all of our new students, and welcome back to our returning students! 

You may be wondering how your Fall 2020 remote courses will be taught this semester.   For the lastest information, please see the Method of Course Delivery for Fall 2020.

Non-medical face masks mandatory beginning Aug. 24

Since early July, Memorial has strongly encouraged wearing non-medical masks while on campus. Beginning Monday, Aug. 24, 2020 masks must be worn in public indoor spaces in Newfoundland and Labrador as issued in a special measures order by Newfoundland and Labrador’s Chief Medical Officer. Therefore, non-medical masks will be mandatory beginning on Monday for Memorial faculty, staff, students and visitors.

Remote learning technology requirements for fall 2020

Memorial University has developed general technology standards for remote/online learning across Memorial’s campuses in fall 2020.


New study confirms Newfoundland as home to world's oldest animal fossils

The island of Newfoundland is famously known as “The Rock”, but new research reveals that it is the fossils from “The Rock” that are capturing the attention of scientists worldwide.

An international research team, including geologists from Memorial, has concluded fossils from within the province are the world’s oldest evidence of animal life. The study focuses on the southern shore of the Avalon and Mistaken Point Ecological Reserve, which was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2016.

New tools and resources hub for students: MUNUp

Memorial launched MUNUp, a new online tools and resources hub to help students succeed while learning remotely. With transition and orientation programs, services, virtual events and community engagement opportunities, the sky’s the limit.


Update on university travel outside of Newfoundland and Labrador during COVID-19

Memorial University continues to actively monitor the evolving situation regarding COVID-19. Requests for university travel within and outside of Canada deemed essential for student academic progression, research purposes, and faculty and staff activities, will be supported with certain key elements in place (e.g. proof of health insurance coverage) in advance of the travel, and travel request approval from the dean or director of a unit.

COVID-19 prevention best practices

The province has been successful at flattening the curve of COVID-19. It’s important to continue to be vigilant and ensure we keep in mind that preventing another outbreak or minimizing impacts will depend on our collective adherence to best practices.

Update on fall semester

On July 14 undergraduate students of Memorial University will begin the course registration process for the fall semester. In preparation for this task, we would like to remind the university community that teaching and learning will take place in a primarily remote and online teaching and learning environment in fall 2020.

Correction: Update on fall semester

Students in designated courses in Engineering will have limited forms of in-person, on-campus lab activities which will be communicated separately from the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science to students. Incorrect information appeared in an earlier Newsline message.


Fall fees

Suspension of two student fees to continue in fall semester

Alert Level 2 update: living in our campus communities with COVID-19

As the province moves to alert level 2, Memorial has completed the process to provide faculty access to their individual offices on the St. John’s campus, the libraries are moving to expand services in all six of their branches and the Botanical Garden has opened for the season with health and safety measures in place.

Campus access: remaining buildings on St. John`s Campus

As a follow up regarding building access for faculty on St. John’s campus, beginning tomorrow, Wednesday, June 24, all remaining buildings including Physical Education, St. John’s College, Music, Spencer, Coughlan College and Ocean Sciences Centre will be ready for faculty members to return to their individual offices from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Doors will remain locked and access will be by key or card access, which can be coordinated with your unit's key requester.

Faculty access to additional buildings on St. John’s campus

As a follow up regarding building access for faculty on St. John`s campus, beginning Monday, June 22, buildings for Faculty of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Education, Queen’s College, Business, Henrietta Harvey and Biotechnology will be ready for individual faculty members to return from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Doors will remain locked and access will be by key or card access.

Faculty access to Bruneau, Engineering and Earth Sciences buildings starts Thursday

As a follow up to last week’s message regarding building access for faculty on St. John`s campus, beginning Thursday, June 18, Bruneau Centre for Research and Innovation, Engineering and Earth Sciences buildings will be ready for individual faculty members to return from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

Plan for faculty return to campus

As a follow up to last week’s message, we want to provide an update regarding the plan to enable faculty to return to individual offices on a more regular basis.

AUS suspends competition until January 2021

Atlantic University Sport has announced the decision to suspend all conference regular season and postseason competition until January 2021. 

Update: Guiding Principles for Living with COVID-19 in our communities and more

Newfoundland and Labrador continues to operate under Public Health COVID-19 Alert Levels, which outline services, businesses and functions allowed to operate at each alert level. The province is currently scheduled to move to Alert Level 3 on Monday, June 8. Work is ongoing at Memorial to implement a phased resumption of on-campus academic, research and administrative activities, in consideration of government’s five-level approach.


Memorial's Pension Plan during the COVID-19 pandemic

We are living in unprecedented socio-economic times. As a result, many pension plan members, both retired and still working, may be concerned about their pension and their own long term financial security.

As you might expect, the Memorial University Pension Plan, like many others across the country, has experienced some financial challenges due to the investment market turmoil brought on by the combined effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and world oil prices.

Memorial to offer remote program delivery for fall 2020

Memorial University will welcome new and returning students to a primarily remote teaching and learning environment for the fall semester. Full in-person, on-campus courses will not resume before January 2021.

COVID-19 update to university

As we approach Monday, May 11, and the scheduled move to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 as outlined by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, many of you may wonder what that means for Memorial. At this point, none of the restrictions currently in place at Memorial will change if the Level 4 status is implemented by the province on May 11.


Update from the Department of Human Resources

Further to previous messaging from the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) regarding the ramping up of remote work, managers should now be engaging with all staff to determine work that can be completed remotely.

Guide to Financial Supports and Programs

Student Life has created a comprehensive Guide to Financial Supports and Employment Programs.

Self-Service Grading Option page extended for 24 hours

As this has been an unprecedented semester and some instructors will not be able to submit Winter 2020 grades until April 25, the Student Self-Service Grading Option page will remain available to students for an additional 24 hours, closing on Sunday, April 26 at 12:00 p.m. (NDT).

Status of fall 2020 semester

Memorial University is actively considering scenarios for innovative program delivery for the fall 2020 semester. We are committed to providing students with full access to our quality academic programs, despite the challenges that may come.

Building update April 16: Further building access controls for all campuses

Message from the President and Provost

Due to the unprecedented emergency situation that has resulted in the declaration of a Public Health Emergency in Newfoundland and Labrador, Memorial University is enacting further measures related to buildings access on all our campuses to enhance social distancing and keep our community safe. By ensuring we are aware of who is on campus, we are better able to protect the health and safety of our faculty, staff and students who must come to campus.

Update on general admissions for 2020-21 academic year

On Tuesday, April 14, Memorial’s Senate waived the undergraduate general admission overall average requirement of 70 per cent for Newfoundland and Labrador high school students in the graduating class of 2020 who apply to attend Memorial University in the 2020-21 academic year (Fall 2020, Winter 2021, or Spring 2021).

Reminder: Personal protective equipment (PPE) collection

As a reminder, Memorial continues to identify and collect personal protective equipment (PPE) which may be held by units throughout the university.

St. John's campus revised building hours

Effective April 9, Memorial is phasing in reduced building access on St. John's campus, beginning with reduced building hours. Buildings will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday and will be locked on weekends and holidays. 

Take EASC 2918 "Earth's Story" by Distance

This Spring we will be offering EASC 2918 “Earth’s Story” by distance. This is a general interest course with no pre-reqs, an interesting science elective about the dynamic geological history of the last 4 billion years. Spring registration begins Monday, April 13th!

Student emergency funds

Many students are facing a range of stressful disruptions in their lives as a result of the worldwide health pandemic. Cancellation of all in-person classes, a full move to remote learning and having to quickly vacate residences – combined with isolation measures, job loss and travel bans – have created particular hardships for students who lack other supports.

A message from Dr. Vianne Timmons

As we start the week, I wanted to pause for a moment to express a sincere thank you to the hundreds of critical employees who have been working tirelessly and constantly since the start of Memorial’s COVID-19 response.

Update on student fees and PAS/FAL choice

Suspension of two student fees for spring semester and update on PAS/FAL choice


Spring registration update

Information on revised start date for Spring registration for graduate and undergraduate students

Bonne Bay Marine Station Public Aquarium postpones opening

To assist with proactively preventing the spread of COVID-19, the seasonal re-opening of the Bonne Bay Marine Station’s Public Aquarium, which was previously scheduled for May 16th, has been postponed until further notice.

Message to the university community from Dr. Gary Kachanoski

This has been a momentous week at Memorial as the first week of remote instruction draws to a close. I want to send a heartfelt thanks to all of our students, faculty and staff for your patience, hard work and perseverance in making this transition happen. It has taken an army of people to get us here, and the job is certainly not over yet. We must continue to work together toward the successful completion of the winter 2020 semester for our students.

Update on Feild Hall residence, research and the Writing Centre

Update on Feild Hall residence; on-campus research and scholarly activities, fieldwork and interaction with research participants; and the Writing Centre

Statement on Feild Hall residence

The health and safety of our students is our primary concern during these unprecedented times. In consultation with Memorial University, The Graduate Students’ Union (GSU) has given notice to Feild Hall residents notice to vacate the building. This decision was made based on health and safety considerations. Memorial has made an offer to relocate students to another residence, MacPherson Hall. The university is providing each of the residents a room at a discounted rate so that they will pay no additional rent. As well, the university will provide the students, at a discounted rate, access to the university meal plan.

Direct deposit forms required by March 27

A reminder to employees and pensioners who are currently paid by cheque, you are required to move to direct deposit to ensure pay cheques continue during this uncertain and evolving situation.

Identification and collection of PPE

Memorial’s emergency operations centre (EOC) is identifying personal protective equipment (PPE) which may be held by units throughout the university.

Student Update

Information on counselling services and computer labs

Faculty and staff update on critical functions, remote work and prioritizing work assignments

Thank you for your patience and support as we continue to work together to transition our operations while maintaining our commitment to support students, faculty and staff. Over the past week you’ve likely had questions about what you should be working on from home. The Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and your managers have been working to identity what functions are most critical at this time, and how we continue our work during this uncertain time.

Dr. John Hanchar appointed as Memorial's NSERC Leader

Dr. John Hanchar, Professor and University Research Professor, Department of Earth Sciences in the Faculty of Science was selected to be appointed as Memorial University’s NSERC Leader. The NSERC Leaders network brings together stakeholders from universities across the country with the goal to help shape policies, plans and activities by listening, collaborating and working with colleagues on the future of science and engineering in Canada.

Updates on enrolment verification, remote academic advising, bookstore resources

This update includes information about Registrar's Office and School of Graduate Studies processing times, remote academic advising options at all campuses and resources available for students from the bookstore.

Processing and service times for Registrar's Office and School of Graduate Studies

Most of the Registrar’s Office staff and School of Graduate Studies staff are working remotely. As a result, processing and service times for many of our services have increased, including requests for enrolment verification letters, official transcripts, supporting admission documents, etc. As we continue to practice social distancing, we are discouraging students from coming on campus at this time to drop off or pick up documents. Please do not visit our offices at this time.

Health Research Ethics Authority Research Ethics Office

The Health Research Ethics Authority (HREA) Research Ethics Office (REO) has been closely monitoring the developments related to COVID-19. In light of recent restrictions, the REO of the Health Research Ethics Board (HREB) wishes to advise researchers that, effective immediately, their research protocols must be modified or delayed to avoid face-to-face personal interactions with research participants.

UPDATED INFORMATION: Classrooms, teaching labs and study rooms closing on all campuses

Updated opening hours and occupancy limits for computer labs that remain open for students who do not have personal computer access for remote learning.

Update on spring semester, spring convocation and MUNSafe

Memorial’s spring semester, including intersession and summer session, will continue with remote instruction of all courses at all campuses. This means in-person on-campus courses will not resume before September 2020 Additionally, Memorial will will postpone Spring Convocation 2020 ceremonies that were scheduled for May 14 in Corner Brook and May 26-29 in St. John’s.


Classrooms, teaching labs and study rooms closing on all campuses

Effective tomorrow, Monday, March 23, instruction at Memorial University officially resumes remotely.

Accessible remote teaching and learning guidelines

The Blundon Centre has developed guidelines to assist faculty and instructors with incorporating accessibility into remote teaching and learning approaches.

Message from the President to the University Community

This has been an unprecedented week for our university and our communities. I hope you are each taking care of yourselves, practicing social distancing and hand washing, and doing your part to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Course Evaluation Questionnaires

Memorial will not administer Course Evaluation Questionnaires (CEQs) for the winter 2020 semester. 

Supporting research activities during COVID-19

As Memorial and the world assess the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Memorial is committed to supporting our researchers in continuing their research activities.

Academic updates

Spring semester registration, waived regulations and more information for students

Update for students, employees and instructors

Information for instructors, remote workers, students and employees.

Update on final exams for Winter 2020 semester

Students are advised that there will be no final exams taking place on campus in April. This includes both on campus and online invigilated exams. A proposal regarding final exams has been approved.

Update from the Office of the Vice-President (Research)

Activities for faculty, staff and students (undergraduate and graduate) in all research laboratories will be suspended from 8 a.m. Wednesday, March 18, onward.

Update for employees regarding work arrangements

Following the message earlier today regarding suspension of classes, employees should consult with their managers immediately regarding their work arrangement.

Update on suspension of classes and change in library hours - 12:55 p.m.

Based on ongoing consultation with units and a determination of their ability to be responsive, and the evolving public health environment, Memorial University has moved up the timeline for suspension of all classes. As of end of day Tuesday, March 17, all classes (in person and online) on all campuses will be suspended. Unless your individual instructor has advised otherwise, all academic programming, including midterms and evening classes, will go ahead today, March 17. Remote delivery of classes is scheduled to resume on Monday, March 23, as previously announced. Students with questions about their classes should contact their instructor.

Update on COVID-19 response - March 16

This important update includes information for students, faculty and staff. Of particular note: all students who reside on the island of Newfoundland are required to vacate student residences by end of day, Friday, March 20. Childcare Centre is closed immediately until further notice. Memorial is encouraging remote work with the understanding that university priorities are the health and safety of students, faculty and staff; maintaining the academic integrity of the semester; and critical university operations. To allow for social distancing and to help employees manage the current demands, employees are asked to work with their supervisor to facilitate remote work arrangements where operationally feasible. Unless you currently have arrangements with your supervisor, report to work as scheduled.



Student organization in 'upper echelon' of geology students globally

A group of geology graduate students have found great success with a student organization.

The Society of Economic Geologists (SEG) is the largest scientific organization for mineral deposits research in the world, with over 6,500 members from all over the globe.

The group of students from the Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, who comprise the organization’s Memorial chapter is led by society president Carly Mueller.


Students, staff and faculty honoured at Faculty of Science awards

The dean of the Faculty of Science recognized 283 students representing the top 10 per cent in the faculty during the annual Dean’s Awards ceremony recently.

During the event, Dr. Mark Abrahams also presented the Dean of Science Book Prize; the Lou Visentin Award, recognizing students who have held a place on the Dean's List for four consecutive years; the Co-op Student of the Year Award; as well as the Dean's Distinguished Service, Scholar and Teacher awards.

Thirteen Memorial faculty members receive high honour

Thirteen Memorial University professors have been accorded the designation professor emeritus/emerita, an honour reserved for highly distinguished faculty members.

In the Faculty of Science, the new professores emeriti are Dr. Ali Engin Aksu, Department of Earth Sciences; Dr. John T. Brosnan, Department of Biochemistry; Dr. William Driedzic, Department of Ocean Sciences and Dr. Raymond A. Poirier, Department of Chemistry.

Alumus receives Abraham-Gottlob-Werner Medal

Prof. Donald B. Dingwell, Department of Earth Sciences alumnus and Director of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Munich, has been awarded the highest scientific recognition of the mineralogical community of Germany in the form of a Medal, the 2019 Abraham-Gottlob-Werner Medal of the German Mineralogical Society (DMG), for his outstanding scientific accomplishments in the mineralogical sciences. Prof. Dingwell will accept the award at the annual meeting of geosciences in Germany this September in Munster.


Earth scientist tracing origins of Maritime Archaic copper artifacts

Uncovering a mystery thousands of years old.

That’s what Dr. Derek Wilton, Honorary Research Professor in the Faculty of Science’s earth sciences department, is doing in collaboration with The Rooms’ museum division.



Earth Sciences graduate student dives off Galapagos in submersible

It’s an image those who have seen it will never forget: the moment a submarine’s windows reveal their first glimpse of the ocean floor.

Earth Sciences graduate student Sarah Moriarty got to experience the rare sight for herself this spring on a research cruise north of the Galapagos Islands.



Generous Software Donation from Petroleum Experts Ltd.

The Department of Earth Sciences is pleased to acknowledge that Petroleum Experts Ltd. (Petex) has donated 10 licences of the MOVE software suite, the commercial equivalent of £1,334,160,00, to Memorial University of Newfoundland. This software will allow for basin evolution studies to be undertaken by both undergraduate and graduate students, enhancing our knowledge of our offshore margins and basins.


MUN alum receives Canadian VIP Career Achievement Award

MUN Earth Sciences alum Prof. Donald B. Dingwell (B.Sc. & University Medal Geology 1980), Director of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Munich, has been awarded the VIP Career Achievement Award from the Geological Association of Canada (GAC) for his lifelong contributions to Volcanology and Igneous Petrology.

International exchange experience ignites Earth Sciences graduate's passion for geology

Melissa Mills fell in love with geology while taking courses as a University of Colorado exchange student with the National Student Exchange program.

The Grand Falls-Windsor native had started a general science degree at Memorial’s Grenfell Campus, but this spring she will pick up a B.Sc. (Hons.) in earth sciences with a minor in ocean sciences during the afternoon session of convocation at the St. John’s Arts and Culture Centre on May 28.


Canadian Space Agency funding research into finding extraterrestrial life

Dr. Penny Morrill’s latest research project may help detect life on other planets.

The associate professor of earth sciences in the Faculty of Science recently received a grant from the Canadian Space Agency, through its Flights and Fieldwork for the Advancement of Science and Technology (FAST) funding initiative, for a project titled the Study of Electrical Potential, Remote Sensing and Preservation of Biosignatures at Sites of Serpentinization, or SERP.


Federal investment of nearly $600,000 in high-tech research labs and equipment Memorial

New federal funding will help expand Memorial’s research infrastructure and attract the best and brightest talent to Newfoundland and Labrador.

Projects led by teams in the Faculty of Science are receiving nearly $600,000 from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) John R. Evans Leaders Fund (JELF).


Graduate Student takes first place at PDAC

Congratulations to Dennis Sanchez Mora, PhD student of Dr. John Jamieson, for taking first place in the Student Minerals Colloquium at the doctoral level at the recent Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Conference in Toronto. 


Connecting to Labrador roots while helping lead critical marine research

It’s an opportunity most undergrads never get.

Little wonder, then, that Natasha Healey jumped at the chance to help run one of Memorial’s most progressive science labs – one of only two in Canada and one of four such facilities in North America.

The third-year undergraduate geography and earth sciences student in the bachelor of science program manages the Civic Laboratory for Environmental Action Research (CLEAR), a feminist, anti-colonial lab specializing in monitoring plastic pollution.


Providing visually-impaired students the tools to work independently

Earth Sciences master’s student Gabriel Sindol is extremely near-sighted, which can make some of his hands-on research difficult.

His supervisor, Dr. Mike Babechuk, wasn’t aware how much of an issue his eyesight was until Mr. Sindol was sent to Dublin, Ireland, to collect data and they discovered certain laboratory tasks were extremely challenging for him.





Students, staff and faculty honoured at Faculty of Science awards

The annual Faculty of Science Dean’s Awards ceremony was held on Memorial’s St. John’s campus and saw Dr. Mark Abrahams, dean of the Faculty of Science, recognize 282 students representing the top 10 per cent in the faculty.



Graduate Student wins Award at Underwater Mining Conference

Congratulations to Dennis Sanchez Mora, a PhD student of Dr. John Jamieson, won the Best Abstract Award at the Underwater Mining Conference in Bergen, Norway. Dennis’ interactive presentation was titled: “Permeability and fault control on seafloor massive sulfide deposits in the Lucky Strike hydrothermal field (Mid-Atlantic Ridge) using Leapfrog Geo software”. This award included at $650 cash prize.

Search for Earth's twin subject of upcoming public lecture

A woman known as the ‘astronomical Indiana Jones’ will give the 2018 Elizabeth R. Laird Lecture.

Dr. Sara Seager, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, will present Exoplanets and the Search for Habitable Worlds on Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. in the Bruneau Centre for Research and Innovation, room IIC-2001.


Dr. Jeremy Hall receives 2018 Canadian Professional Geoscientist Award

Dr. Jeremy Hall, Professor Emeritus, has been awarded the highest honour of Geoscientists Canada, the Canadian Professional Geoscientists Award for his outstanding contributions to research, teaching, public service, and to the geoscience profession.  For more information about his achievement, please seeGeoscientists Canada Press Release.


New research shows early organisms grew big to spread offspring

Some of the earliest complex organisms on Earth — and possibly some of the earliest animals to exist — got big not to compete for food, but to spread their offspring as far as possible.

Mineral Deposits at Voisey's Bay

Dr. Derek Wilton was recently interviewed by Terry Roberts from CBC for a story on the mineral deposits at Voisey’s Bay.

Thriving Regions Partnership Project

The Harris Centre's Thriving Regions Partnership Process is a new program designed to build sustainable relationships between researchers and regional partners. Dr. Derek Wilton’s project has been chosen to move forward in the region of the Baie Verte Peninsula.

Graduate students best in the world in field development challenge

A team of Memorial graduate students has won the 2018 European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers’ Laurie Dake Challenge.

On June 11 the Memorial Aion Energy Team was one of eight international teams that presented fully integrated development and evaluation plans to a jury at the event in Copenhagen, Denmark. Memorial was one of two Canadian universities to compete in the final challenge.


Faculty and Alumni Presented Awards at PEGNL Dinner

The Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Newfoundland and Labrador (PEGNL) Awards dinner was recently held with many individuals from the Department of Earth Sciences and our alumni presented awards.

Memorial University Team wins the EAGE Laurie Dake challenge

Congratulations to Larry Sandoval (Geophysics), Francis Mujica (Petrophysics), Daniel Sivira (Geology), and Jenny Kim (Reservoir Engineering) who have won the final round of the EAGE Laurie Dake in Copenhagen on June 10th, 2018. This was the first time that a Memorial University team has qualified for the finals in this competition.

Dr. John Jamieson joins expedition drilling underwater volcano

Dr. John Jamieson, Canada Research Chair in Marine Geology, is currently on board the JOIDES Resolution, a scientific drilling ship operated by the International Ocean Discovery Program. Dr. Jamieson is part of an international research group currently on a 2-month expedition to Brothers Volcano, an active submarine volcano north of New Zealand.


PhD Student Mackenie Patrick Receives PGS D Award

Congratulations to PhD student Mackenzie Patrick who has been awarded a Postgraduate Scholarship-Doctoral (PGS D) from The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). This prestigious award provides financial support to high calibre scholars who are engaged in a doctoral program in the natural sciences or engineering.

Memorial scientist calls on world to act on conserving space sites

A scientific study led by Memorial University has concluded global action is required to protect a number of significant geological features on Mars, the moon and other planets and celestial bodies.


Memorial houses Canadian chair, office of international ocean drilling program

Memorial University is the new home of the Canadian Consortium for Ocean Drilling (CCOD).

Dr. John Jamieson, assistant professor, Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, at Memorial and the Canada research chair in marine geology, is the new drilling consortium chair and Canada’s representative to the IODP.


Student Winners at GAC-NL Meeting

The Geological Association of Canada – Newfoundland and Labrador Section (GAC-NL) Annual Technical Meeting was held at the Johnston Geocentre, St. John’s from February 19th to 20th, 2018. This meeting included presentations from industry, academia and government, highlighting the remarkable geoscience research being carried out in the province. As always, there was a strong representation from students at Memorial University, with 15 graduate and undergraduate students presenting their research at the meeting. In order to honour the exceptional work of these students, GAC-NL decided to present awards to the best student presentations.


Dr. Derek Wilton - Fellow of the RCGS

Dr. Derek Wilton's research is being highlighted on the Canadian Geographic website as a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. See what Derek and other RCGS Fellows are working on in 2018.


Geophysics Student Recognized as Academic All-Canadian

Department of Earth Sciences geophysics Honours student, Joseph Pittman, was recently recognized as an Academic All-Canadian for his achievements in varsity track and field athletics while maintaining an 80+ average. In 1988, USPORTS introduced its first Academic All-Canadians, those exceptional student-athletes who achieve an academic standing of 80% or higher while playing on a university varsity team. On January 10th, the Sea-Hawks hosted their first event to celebrate the academic accomplishments of Memorial's student-athletes who have been named Academic All-Canadians. Only 39 students throughout the university received this honour.



Dr. John M. Hanchar named University Research Professor

Dr. John M. Hanchar has been named University Research Professor in acknowledgement of his internationally recognized contributions as an earth scientist, for cultivating an innovative and cutting edge research program and for the incredible reach and impact of his scholarship.

Dr. Hanchar, professor and head, Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, and director of the Centre for Earth Resources Research, is a leader in his field whose research activities combine fieldwork, experiments and high precision analytical methods. He has made fundamental contributions in geochemistry, economic geology, condensed matter physics and materials science.


Golden footprint - Earth sciences graduate student mapping ore deposits in real time

A Memorial graduate student is helping gold prospectors in Central Newfoundland zero in on new deposits — and fast.

Sam Ybarra, a master’s student in the Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, who hails from Columbus, Mississippi, is using infrared spectroscopy to collect mineralogical and geochemical data in real time.

Working with his supervisor, Dr. Steve Piercey, Mr. Ybarra has been mapping fluid rock, ore-forming footprints in Baie Verte, N.L., in partnership with Anaconda Mining.

Orogenic gold is formed when rocks along faults in the earth’s crust fracture and release water. As the fluid escapes, it scavenges gold from the rocks it passes and, when a favourable location is found, the gold is deposited.

The fizzy, carbon dioxide- and gold-bearing hot water also reacts with the rocks themselves, forming new minerals — a process called hydrothermal alteration.



Students, staff and faculty honoured at Faculty of Science awards

The annual Faculty of Science Dean’s Awards ceremony was held on Memorial’s St. John’s campus and saw Dr. Mary Courage, dean of the Faculty of Science, recognize 271 students representing the top 10 per cent in the faculty.


Rare earth element research to aid in northern mining evaluation

Dr. Derek Wilton is collaborating with the Nunatsiavut Government on a project that has significant implications for resource evaluation in the Canadian Arctic and near Arctic.

The remote Strange Lake area in Northern Labrador contains a world-class rare earth element (REE) deposit. REEs are strategic minerals used in a variety of high-tech applications, ranging from computer and smartphone screens to super magnets.

“This deposit was discovered by the Iron Ore Company of Canada in the 1980s and it’s right on the border between Labrador and Quebec,” said Dr. Wilton, a professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science. “While they worked at it for a few years, they really couldn’t do anything with it because they didn’t know how to separate the elements from the minerals.”

A summertime sail in search of Nordic black smokers

Memorial’s Dr. John Jamieson spent some of the warm summer months on a cold-water cruise — Arctic cold.

The professor of earth sciences joined a multidisciplinary research team aboard the research vessel R/V G.O. Sars, led by chief scientist Dr. Rolf Pederson, director of the K.G. Jebsen Centre for Deep Sea Research at the University of Bergen, Norway.



Students working onboard Ramform Tethys

Colin Taylor and Ben Coughlan, both of whom successfully completed their Bachelors in earth  science this year,  accepted a summer internship  position with the Petroleum Board of Canada. They joined the Ramform Tethys  in St. Johns in May 2017 for their first four-week rotation offshore.

The first trip was a general introduction  to the seismic  vessel, including deck operations and exposure to each seismic  department onboard. For the second four-week rotation the two interns spent most of their time in the Operations Geophysics department, learning  about Viper and SPArk, online/offline processing, project management and data  visualization.

Ulrike Ott, Personnel Manager of the Petroleum Board of Canada asked them what they thought of the program and their time offshore.


MSc Student Receives CSPG and GSA Awards

Congratulations to MSc student Alex Hutter who received a 2017 CSPG Regional Graduate Student Scholarship and a 2017 Geological Society of America Student Research Grant for his thesis project “Detrital thermochronometry and provenance of Jurassic and Cretaceous reservoir sandstones, Jeanne d’Arc basin, Grand Banks, offshore Newfoundland”.


Earth Sciences paper makes cover of Geology

Dr. John Hanchar, a professor of Earth Sciences, and his former graduate students, Chris Fisher and Stacy Phillips, recently had a paper published in the journal Geology, the premier journal in the Earth Sciences. 


Research shows first burrowing animals helped engineer explosion of life

New Memorial University research has identified how the first burrowing animals helped engineer the explosion of life as we know it.




Award-Winning Honours Students

Eight of our students, including five presenters, attended the 66th Annual Atlantic Universities Geoscience Conference, which was held at Acadia University, in Wolfville Nova Scotia, from 27th – 29th October, 2016. 

All of our presenters were recognized for their work: of the six awards given out, our students won three (best presentation, best poster and best geophysics presentation), and the other two presenters were tied runners up for best presentation.

Diving deep into Canada's first Marine Protected Area

This summer, faculty from Memorial’s earth sciences department sailed on a research cruise to Endeavour Ridge, Canada’s first Marine Protected Area (MPA).

Located 250 kilometres offshore from Vancouver Island, B.C., and 2,250 metres below the ocean’s surface, Endeavour is a seismically and volcanically active area of the sea floor with hydrothermal venting.



Student Receives Best Poster Prize

Congratulations to Roddy Campbell (MSc. candidate in Geology) who received a best poster prize from the Mineral Deposit Division at this year’s GAC-MAC conference in Whitehorse, Yukon.


Academics, research and service celebrated

What may have been the largest group of students ever admitted to the Faculty of Science Dean’s List at one time was honoured at an event on Sept. 20.

Annual Dean’s Awards Ceremony was held on Memorial University’s St. John’s campus and saw Dr. Mark Abrahams, dean of Science, recognize 281 students who represent the top 10 per cent in the faculty.



Student Wins Best Poster Prize at GAC-MAC

Congratulations to Roddy Campbell (MSc. student in Geology) who received a best poster prize from the Mineral Deposit Division at this year’s GAC-MAC conference in Whitehorse, Yukon. His thesis research on “Early Paleozoic magmatism and stratigraphy of the Kechika group, Pelly Mountains, Yukon” is collaborative with Luke Beranek and Steve Piercey (Memorial University) and Richard Friedman (University of British Columbia). This project is supported by the Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals program at Natural Resources Canada, Yukon Geological Survey, and NSERC.

Dr. Stefanie Brueckner receives Governor General's Gold Medal in Graduate Studies

Congratulations to Dr. Stefanie Brueckner who received the prestigious Governor General's Gold Medal in Graduate Studies at the recent Spring Convocation, given annually to recognize excellence in a doctoral program.


Memorial researchers receive more than $6.7 million from NSERC

Nearly $7-million in new federal funding will accelerate more than 50 individual research projects on three of Memorial’s campuses in areas ranging from resource management to ocean sciences to enhanced oil recovery.

Dr. Stefanie Brueckner receives Governor General's Gold Medal in Graduate Studies

Congratulations to Dr. Stefanie Brueckner who received the prestigious Governor General's Gold Medal in Graduate Studies at the recent Spring Convocation, given annually to recognize excellence in a doctoral program.

In 1873, the Earl of Dufferin, who served as governor general from 1872 to 1878, created a medal to recognized scholastic achievements.  Today, the Governor General's Academic Medal is awarded at four levels:  Bronze at the secondary school level, Collegiate Bronze at the post-secondary diploma level, Silver at the undergraduate level, and Gold at the graduate level.  The Governor General's Academic Medal is awarded to the student who graduates with the highest standing in his or her institution.


Killam Fellowship program provides international exchange

Joshua Lehr and Alicia Morry are Memorial’s 2016 Killam Fellows.

Mr. Lehr, a third-year science student majoring in behavioural neuroscience and mathematics, has spent the winter semester at the University of Texas in Austin. Ms. Morry, a fourth-year student currently working on two degrees, a bachelor of science in earth sciences and a bachelor of arts (hons.) in archaeology, has just begun a semester at the University of Washington.


Memorial University to hold spring convocation ceremonies

Some 2,500 degrees will be awarded to graduating Memorial University students during 12 sessions of convocation at the Corner Brook Arts and Culture Centre on May 12 and at the St. John’s Arts and Culture Centre from May 31-June 3.


Fogo Island's geologist-in-residence program a big draw for alumni

You’ve heard of writers-in-residence and artists-in-residence, but how about geologists-in-residence?

Since 2013, Memorial University alumni have played a large role in a unique variation on the residency program on Fogo Island, through a project developed in conjunction with the Shorefast Foundation and the Fogo Island Inn.


Research chair sailing off coast of Fiji, exploring underwater volcanoes

Memorial University is partnering with the Schmidt Ocean Institute, the Johnson GEO Centre and Oceans Learning Partnership to live broadcast a deep-sea expedition in the South Pacific on March 29.

Memorial University Earth Sciences professor named Terra Nova Young Innovator

Environmental geochemist Dr. Penny Morrill, an associate professor with the Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science, is the latest recipient of the Terra Nova Young Innovator Award, supported on behalf of the partners in the Terra Nova oil field by Suncor as operator.

Stephen Piercey awarded G.A.C. W. W. Hutchison Medal

Congratulations to Dr. Stephen Piercey, Professor and NSERC-Altius Industrial Research Chair in the Metallogeny of Ores and Volcanic Sedimentary Basins, who is the 2016 recipient of the Geological Association of Canada's W. W. Hutchison Medal for outstanding contributions to Canadian earth science research in the Lithostratigraphy, Volcanology, and Sedimentary Evolution of Mineral Deposits.

Students receive awards to explore N.L.'s ocean industries

Nineteen students were presented with Ocean Industries Student Research Awards (OISRA) at a ceremony on the St. John’s campus March 7.


More than $6.5 million announced for natural resources research

With a combined investment of more than $6.5 million from the federal and provincial governments, Memorial University is advancing critical research focused on Canada’s valuable natural resources.



Alumna named Miss N.L. set to inspire others

A Memorial alumna is savouring the glory of being named Miss Newfoundland and Labrador, a role she hopes will bolster the profile of several volunteer groups and inspire young women to focus on educational goals.

Late Earth Sciences professor to be inducted in the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame

This January, the late Dr. Harold (Hank) Williams, of the Department of Earth Sciences, will be inducted into the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame.

The Hall of Fame “recognizes and honours the legendary mine finders and builders of a great Canadian industry.” Candidates are individuals who have demonstrated outstanding lifetime achievements to the benefit of the Canadian or world mineral industry in the areas of exploration, corporation building, technical or supporting contributions, or mining in society.

Born and raised on ‘The Rock’, the island of Newfoundland inspired Dr. Williams during his fruitful years with the Geological Survey of Canada (GSC) and prolific career at Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador in St. John’s.


Students receive cash, prizes at annual conference

Kazuhito Mizutani, an international student form Yokkaichi, Japan, has received the Canadian Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) Newfoundland Branch Silver Jubilee Scholarship.

The award was presented recently in St. John’s at the Mineral Resources Review.

Student presented with Environmental Geoscience Award

Six students from the Earth Sciences Department attended the Atlantic Universities Geoscience Conference (AUGC) 2015, which took place at St. Mary's University, Halifax from October 22th to 25th.  Emily Gorner, Mark Grant, and Kazuhito Mizutani presented their honours dissertations at the conference.  


Science celebrates academic achievement and service

It was a full house for the recent Dean of Science Awards ceremony and reception on Tuesday, Sept. 22.

Over 280 students, who represent the top 10 per cent in the faculty, were admitted to the Dean's List, possibly the largest number at one time.


Professor Emeritus awarded IAG Honorary Fellowship

Dr. Henry Longerich, Professor Emeritus, Department of Earth Sciences, was recently awarded the International Association of Geoanalysts Honorary Fellowship 2015 in recognition of his long-standing contribution to Geoanalytical and Metrological Science and the goals of IAG.  The award was presented at the Geoanalysis 2015 conference in Leoben, Austria, August 2015.

Alumnus receives J.D. Eaton Alumni Award

J.D. Eaton Alumni Award

Dr. Rex Gibbons, B.Sc.’67, B.Ed.’67, M.Sc.’69, is this year’s recipient of the J.D. Eaton Alumni Award, which recognizes outstanding volunteer contributions to Memorial.


Faculty, alumni recognized at PEGNL conference

Earth Sciences associate professor Graham Layne was recently awarded the Teaching Award from the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Newfoundland and Labrador at their recent annual conference on June 5th.

Earth Sciences prof named Fellow of the Geological Society of America

Dr. Stephen Piercey, a professor of Earth Sciences and the NSERC-Altius Industrial Research Chair in Mineral Deposits, was recently elected as a Fellow of the Geological Society of America (GSA).

Recent Faculty Awards

Dr. Stephen Piercey has been named the recipient of the 2015 President’s Award for Outstanding Research.  This award recognizes young researchers who have made outstanding contributions to their scholarly disciplines.

At a recent PEGNL Conference, Dr. Graham Layne was given the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists Newfoundland and Labrador Teaching Award.  This award recognizes exemplary  contribution to  the  teaching and learning of the engineering and geoscience at  Memorial University.  Rod Churchill, alumni 1991 (BSc(Hons) and 1994 (MSc) won the PEG-NL Community Service Award.


Dr. Stephen Piercey Named 2015-2016 GAC Howard Street Robinson Lecturer

Dr. Stephen Piercey, Professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, has been named the 2015-2016 Geological Association of Canada (GAC) Howard Street Robinson Lecturer.  The Howard Street Robinson Lecturer is chosen by the Mineral Deposits Division and the Precambrian Division of the GAC in alternate years. It is funded by the Robinson Fund of the GAC that was established in 1977, following the bequest to GAC from the estate of Howard Street Robinson, a founding member of GAC. The bequest was “for furtherance of scientific study of Precambrian Geology and Metal Mining.”


Memorial students hit the mark in target shooting

Memorial students Ben Taylor and Samantha Marsh are among the best in the country when it comes to target shooting.

Mr. Taylor, a 22-year-old Earth sciences student from St. John’s, has been the national men’s air rifle champion for the past two years while Ms. Marsh, a 20-year-old international business student living in Mount Pearl, recently brought home two gold medals from the 2015 Canada Winter Games in Prince George, B.C.





Student Chris Voisey to attend S-IMEW

Congratulations to student Chris Voisey who has been selected to attend the 9th Annual Student-Industry Mineral Exploration Workshop.



Professor Martin Brasier, RIP

It is with great sadness that we note the passing of Professor Martin Brasier.  Martin was a very recently retired professor of palaeontology at Oxford University and a long-standing Adjunct Professor (2007-2013) in our department at Memorial where he collaborated and co-supervised students with Duncan McIlroy.



Science postdoc receives Memorial's first Banting fellowship

Dr. Trevor VandenBoer is the recipient of Memorial University’s first Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship.

The objective of the Banting program is to attract and retain top-tier postdoctoral talent, develop their leadership potential and position them for success as research leaders of tomorrow. Only 70 of these are awarded annually at a value of $70,000 a year for two years.

Dr. John Hanchar receives the Dean of Science Distinguished Scholar Award

It was standing-room only at the annual Dean’s Awards Ceremony and reception on Tuesday, Sept. 23, as parents, employees and friends joined the Faculty of Science to celebrate student, faculty and staff achievement.

During the event, Dr. Mark Abrahams, dean of Science, named 259 students to the Dean’s List, a group comprised of the top 10 per cent of students in the Faculty of Science.



Earth Sciences All Years Reunion Celebration

The Department of Earth Science is inviting 60 years of graduates back to Memorial as a part of its Reunion celebrations happening during MUNdays 2014. Celebrations will kick off Friday night with a get together on campus in the Alexander Murray Club and Graduate Lounge. It's all about old friends, food, laughter and memories which is sure to make it a rockin' good time - plus we want you to bring along your guitars for a little jam session!

Saturday requires you to dust off those hiking boots and rock hammers! We have a couple of great field trips lined up. You'll have the opportunity to explore ancient Neoproterozoic glacial rocks or Avalonian volcano-plutonic terrane.

Remembering history - 50th anniversary of Grand Banks sea adventure

In the life of every university there are legends – tales of high adventure and discovery – some passed on from generation to generation, some lost in the passage of time. This summer marked the 50th anniversary of one of those events.


Fossil discovery reveals earliest evidence of animals with muscles

A fossil discovered in Newfoundland and Labrador may contain one of the first animals on earth and, quite possibly, the oldest evidence of muscle tissue ever recorded.


Proposed uranium mine creates opportunity for unique research collaboration

Ordinarily Dr. Derek Wilton, a professor Earth Sciences, might not be expected to have much in common, with Dr. Atanu Sarkar, a public health physician in the Faculty of Medicine.

But a potential uranium mine in Labrador is bringing together these two very different researchers at Memorial.


Concept design phase of core sciences building nearing completion

The concept design phase of the new 425,000 sq. ft. core science facility is expected to wrap up in July.

On June 25th, three concepts will be presented in a Town Hall session to the Memorial community, with the goal of establishing a preferred scheme based on the strengths of each design.


RDE invests in mining and petroleum-related R&D at Memorial University

Five Memorial-led research projects recently received a boost from the Research & Development Corporation (RDC). RDC is investing more than $475,000 in five research and development projects related to mineral exploration and development. The projects are aimed at enhancing exploration efforts, improving environmental mitigation strategies and strengthening R&D opportunities through the purchase of specialized equipment. 


Uncovering the mysteries of the earth

Tens of thousands of years ago, the Northern Hemisphere was covered by continental glaciers. These glaciers acted like bulldozers, pushing dirt and rocks across the land and dumping them kilometres away, leaving a mystery for those who look for and study mineral deposits: How to tell if there is a hidden deposit buried metres below.


Hibernia support to bolster geophysics program at Memorial

Memorial University’s Department of Earth Sciences will use a $1.98 million contribution from Hibernia Management and Development Company Ltd. (HMDC) to create the Hibernia Project Geophysics Support Fund to enhance geophysics education and research.



Interested in the Earth's Story?

EASC2918 Earth's Story is an overview of the Earth's dynamic past of episodes of supercontinent collision and breakup, massive flooding, global warming and freezing, magnetic field reversals, and continents travelling over long distances.  The evolution of life is tied to this history and has had equally dramatic turns of rich growth and catastrophic extinction.

Memorial grads, faculty recognized at Mineral Industry Awards

The Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) Newfoundland Branch recognized a number of individuals with ties to Memorial University at their recent 2013 Mineral Industry Awards.


50 Years of Geophysics at MUN: A Celebratory Reunion


On Saturday, 19 October 2013, the Department celebrated the 50th anniversary of the appointment in 1963 of Dr. Ernst Deutsch, as the first geophysics faculty member.  Geophysics at MUN grew in the Physics Department over the next 20 years, and then the group merged administratively with the geologists in the new Department of Earth Sciences. 

Three minute thesis comes to Memorial

For the first time, Memorial Univeristy is participating in the Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competiton.

The Faculty of Science will hold a competition for Science students on Wednesday, Oct. 16. Additionally, the School of Graduate Studies is hosting a university-wide competition on Monday, Oct. 21.


New students invited to Everything Science 2013

Everything Science 2013 is the Faculty of Science's way of welcoming incoming undergraduate students to the faculty.

The orientation event will take place Tuesday, Sept. 3 at 9 a.m. in the lobby of the Science building.


Memorial researchers involved in unique mining innovation partnership

Researchers in Memorial University’s Department of Earth Sciences are among those from 16 other universities and 24 leading mining companies across Canada to benefit from the largest Collaborate Research and Development grant ever awarded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

Dr. Steve Piercey and Dr. Colin Farquharson are research partners on the project, which is hoped to increase exploration success rates.


Chevron Chair in Reservoir Characterization appointed at Memorial University

Dr. Alison Malcolm of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has been appointed the inaugural Chevron Chair in Reservoir Characterization.

Dr. Malcolm, who will assume the position in summer 2014, will establish an applied research program relevant to petroleum geology and geophysics, with special emphasis on integrated reservoir characterization.

Earth Sciences to receive RDC funding for mining project

Penny Morrill and Tao Cheng of the Department of Earth Sciences will receive $24,244 from the Research & Development Corporation of Newfoundland and Labrador (RDC) to investigate improved methods of remediating acid mine drainage from legacy mine sites.

Researchers work with students to create space experiments

Just before Commander Chris Hadfield blasted off in December 2012 for a five-month mission on the International Space Station, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) invited young Canadian students to design their own science experiment for him to do while on board. Memorial researchers helped one Newfoundland school make it into the contest's top 10 - twice!

Funding boost for science and engineering research at Memorial University

Researchers and graduate students at Memorial University received a major boost, thanks to new funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).


Earth Sciences Student Wins Award

Mervin McDonald, our top graduating BSC (Hons) student, received the Captain Robert A. Bartlett Science Award in the recent Spring Convocation.  In addition, he was awarded the  University Medal of Academic Excellence in Earth Sciences and the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists Newfoundland and Labrador Award for Excellence in Geoscience.  Congratulations Merv!

Hibernia enhancing geosciences field school program at Memorial University

The Hibernia Management and Development Company Ltd. (HMDC) is contributing $420,000 to enhance the field experience of students and staff at Memorial University in Newfoundland and Labrador. The funds will support the Department of Earth Science’s core field schools, the development of a new environmental geology and geophysics field school and field safety leadership training opportunities.


Earth Sciences artwork features geological beauty of research

Field researchers get many opportunities to see the majestic side of the natural environment that has become their ‘laboratory’, and someone with a good eye can often capture that splendor.

The Department of Earth Sciences has decided to feature some of those moments in an art installation in one of their public spaces.

Earth Sciences students recognized

Shannon Gill and Will Bradford, both graduate students with the Department of Earth Sciences, have been awarded graduate fellowships from the Society of Economic Geologists with funding from the Society of Economic Geologists Canada Foundation (SEGCF).

Earth Sciences holds scholarship ceremony

The Department of Earth Sciences handed out more than $50,000 in scholarships and awards at a ceremony on April 2. Dr. Graham Layne, deputy head of the Earth Sciences department, hosted the event.


Earth Sciences and Engineering host joint open house

Memorial University’s Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science and The Faculty of Science’s Department of Earth Sciences will be hosting a joint public open house on Saturday, March 9 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. as part of National Engineering and Geoscience Month.



Dr. Jeremy Hall Awarded The Dean of Science Distinguished Scholar Medal
Dr. Jeremy Hall was awarded The Dean of Science Distinguished Scholar Medal for 2012 which recognizes outstanding and sustained contributions which demonstrate a balanced approach to scholarly activities in both teaching and research.
Memorial University receives more than $825,000 from the Canada Foundation for Innovation
Nine researchers at Memorial University have received a combined investment of $827,954 from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) to support their innovative research programs. The overall value of these research projects is more than $2 million. The funding was awarded through the CFI’s Leaders Opportunity Fund.


Research & Development Corporation investment supports Memorial researchers
The Research & Development Corporation (RDC) is investing more than $5.3 million into research and development (R&D) projects at Memorial University of Newfoundland in areas relevant to offshore petroleum, ocean technology, healthcare, aquaculture and other natural resource industries.
Science holds annual awards ceremony
The Faculty of Science had much to celebrate recently as it recognized the accomplishments of faculty, staff and students. At an awards ceremony on Oct. 3, Dr. Mark Abrahams, dean of science, presented the Dean’s List award, which recognizes the top 10 per cent of students in the Faculty of Science.


Earth Sciences MSc Student Wins Best Presentation
Chris Boyd, an MSc student in the Department of Earth Sciences won the best oral presentation at the International Ichnological Association's four-yearly Ichnia III meeting for his work on three dimensional reconstruction of trace fossils. Chris is part of the ichnology group in the department and is supervised by Duncan McIlroy. His thesis is focussed on three dimensional reconstruction of shallow marine trace fossils from the Carboniferous of the UK.


PhD student recognized at earth sciences conference
Stefanie Brueckner, a PhD student with the Department of Earth Sciences, was one of 18 winners for best poster and oral presentations at the Goldschmidt 2012 conference in Montreal.


Twenty-first century dinosaurs from ‘Hell’
A public lecture, taking place on the St. John’s campus of Memorial University, will discuss 21st-century dinosaurs from Hell. That is, Hell Creek, South Dakota. The lecture will take place Tuesday, Aug. 14, at 7 p.m. in EN-2006.


The inside story of cells and complex life topic of public lecture
Dr. Martin Brasier, an adjunct professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, will present a public lecture on the inside story of cells and complex life. The lecture takes place 7 p.m. May 28 in EN-2006.
All-ages festival brings science to the public
Discover glow-in-the-dark crystals, explore microscopic pond life, and make slime during Science Rendezvous, an interactive all-ages science event this Saturday on the St. John's campus of Memorial University.


Earth Science students recognized
The Department of Earth Sciences handed out more than $50,000 in scholarships and awards recently. Graduate and undergraduate students took home top prizes from a number of industry associations and businesses, and from individuals, or in honour of individuals, connected to the department.


Earth Science students win national petroleum geology case study competition
Memorial University students have once again captured the Canadian championship for a petroleum geology case study competition. They will now get to represent the country at the world competition in Long Beach, California this April.
Making an impact on space exploration
Fiscally prudent space exploration and an unquenchable thirst for knowledge about the moon are creating opportunities for Memorial in the unlikeliest of places.
Finding answers in the forest
The climate change discussion, once focused on mitigation, is now raising the issue of adaption. To inform that dialogue, scientists are attempting to understand how the global ecosystem might respond to a changing climate. Canada's boreal forest is a critical piece of the puzzle.


Faculty of Science releases strategic plan
The Faculty of Science has just approved a new strategic plan. The document was approved at a Faculty Council meeting on Dec. 21. The plan is to provide guidance to the Faculty of Science for the next decade.



$2.5 million federal investment in researchers at Memorial
Five top researchers at Memorial University have received a total of $2.5 million in funding from the federal government’s Canada Research Chairs (CRC) program.
Science hands out recognition
The Faculty of Science celebrated its best and brightest at an awards ceremony on Oct. 5. Recipients of the Dean's List, Visentin Award and Book Prize were announced as well as the Distinguished Scholar and Distinguished Service winners.
Congratulations to Nicola Tonkin-Normore
Congratulations to Nicola Tonkin-Normore (PhD student with Dr. Duncan McIlroy) who successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis on October 3, 2011. Internal examiners were Dr. Suzanne Dufour of Biology Dr. Ali Aksu of Earth Sciences. The external examiner, Dr. Murray Gringas (University of Alberta) participated through the use of web-conferencing software, webcams and teleconferencing.


Fourth-year Geophysics Field School
The first running of our new fourth-year geophysics field-school (the reorganized EASC 4105) took place in Baie Verte from 31st August to 5th September.
Field Trip August 2011
On August 31, 7 brave undergraduates followed faculty members Tao Cheng and Penny Morrill into a Moon-like landscape to study the environmental effects of acid mine drainage.
Discover where your SCIENCE degree can take you...
ScienceM@tters is a national award winning program targeted at undergraduate science students beyond first y ear w ho are contemplating the value of a science degree, seeking career direction, and


Faculty Profile - Dr. Tao Cheng
Dr. Tao Cheng is originally from China and has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering from Tsinghua University in Beijing. He completed his Masters of Civil Engineering and PhD in Civil (Environmental) Engineering from the University of Delaware and held a number of post-doctoral fellowships at Auburn University, Alabama; the California Institute of Technology, and Yale University. He joined Memorial University as an assistant professor in the Department of Earth Sciences in August 2010 specializing in hydrogeology.


Support for R&D in mining and petroleum
Thirteen projects at Memorial have been given a $960,000 boost by the Research & Development Corporation of Newfoundland and Labrador. The GeoEXPLORE program is a new directed research program aimed at enhancing geoscience R&D capacity, collaboration and innovation. The


Memorial tied to Blackwood retrospective
A book accompanying an art exhibit of the work of artist David Blackwood contains essays by a number of individuals connected to Memorial University, including one co-written by Dr. Derek Wilton, Department of Earth Sciences.
$1million investment brings new equipment to bolster mineral research
Newfoundland and Labrador's iron ore industry is about to be seen in a whole new light thanks to a more than $1 million infrastructure investment from the Research & Development Corporation of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Iron Ore Company of Canada.