Royal Holloway Department of Earth Sciences Summer Symposium 2023

Helen Bone attended Royal Holloway’s summer symposium a few weeks ago. Below is her round-up from the day:

It is always my absolute pleasure to attend the Royal Holloway Earth Sciences Summer Symposium events to hear the MSc project talks. I can’t say I’ve been every year since graduating, but I attend when I can as it is always a learning exercise. The talks this year were all very well presented. I have been there and done it, so I know just how daunting it feels on the day, and I would like to congratulate the students who have clearly worked hard on their projects.

This year we got to listen to talks from the Environmental Geoscience MSc as well as from the Energy Geosciences MSc. For me this was really interesting as it is outside my area of expertise. The reason we had talks from both courses is however concerning, and comes down to the limited number of students on each course. This isn’t something I’ve only heard from Royal Holloway, but from other institutions as well. It seems geological student numbers are dropping across the board. While the energy landscape is changing, the requirement for geologists is very much still present so we need to find what the root cause of this decline is and address the problem. The question is how do we change this downward trend and make geology something people are interested in studying again?