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Alumni Events

Our alumni events offer the opportunity to learn more about what is currently happening in the Department of Earth Sciences, in addition to the opportunity to meet with old friends and network with other Earth Science professionals.

The University of Cambridge Development and Alumni Relations Office (CUDAR) run events for alumni across the University. To find out more about their events visit their Alumni Events page. 

Forthcoming Alumni Events

Alumni Day and Dinner, Saturday 13 May 2017

On Saturday 13 May, we will will be holding our twelfth Alumni Day and Dinner. All Earth Sciences alumni, their partners and families are warmly invited to join us for what has always been a most enjoyable day. We would like to particularly encourage those who graduated in 1957, 1967, 1977, 1987, 1997 and 2007 to join us.

We have put together a diverse and interesting programme of activities throughout the day, highlights include:

  • talks by Emeritus Professor Dan McKenzie, Professor Nicholas Butterfield and Dr Sally Gibson
  • four of our undergraduate students will give short talks about their recent mapping projects
  • tours of the Godwin Laboratory
  • treasures from the Map Room will be on display in the Library
  • in addition to the permanent displays in the Sedgwick Museum, Tools of the Trade continues together with other temporary exhibitions

The day begins with coffee in the Watson Gallery (ground floor common room) at 11am; a buffet lunch will be served from a marquee on the Archaeology Lawn; and closes with a wine reception in the Sedgwick Museum at 5pm followed by the Alumni Dinner in St John’s College.  The ticket price for the day, including the lunch and dinner is £55 per person.  Lunch can be booked separately.

We have planned a children’s activity in the Sedgwick Museum for those who are thinking of attending with young family.  Unfortunately we not are not able to accommodate children at the Alumni Dinner in St John’s College but if you need assistance booking an alternative evening meal in Cambridge, please contact Alison at .

Our speakers

Emeritus Professor Dan McKenzie CH FRS (King's, 1965) previously Royal Society Professor of Earth Sciences at Cambridge and Head of the Bullard Laboratories. His scientific contributions are many and include: the formulation of Plate Tectonics in the form that it is now used; integrated ideas of mantle convection with wider fluid dynamical understanding of convective systems; showing how sedimentary basins could be formed by distributed extension of the continental lithosphere; obtaining the two-phase flow equations that govern melt generation and transport.

Dan has been the recipient of many major honours and awards including the Wollaston Medal of the Geological Society, the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society and has been appointed a Member of the Order of Companions of Honour by The Queen.

Professor Nick Butterfield is a palaeobiologist with roots in western Canadian ranching, logging and heavy equipment repair. He is interested in the major evolutionary transitions in the history of life on Earth, and how the biosphere worked in deep time. Nothing thrills him quite so much as dissolving up old mudstones in acid and recovering the remains of once-living organisms - with a focus on the interval between 2500 and 500 million years ago.

Dr Sally Gibson is Reader in Petrology and Geochemistry. Her research interests include the causes of Earth's largest volcanic eruptions (flood basalts), the origin of volcanic islands and also the formation and evolution of our planet's lithosphere. Some of Sally's current work is focused on Galapagos volcanoes and how they impact on the weird and wonderful species that inhabit the islands. Her research continues two centuries of research in the archipelago by Cambridge University scientists, including Charles Darwin and Alfred Harker. 

On-line booking will open in January 2017.

For further information, please contact Alison at .

Research Talks and Seminars

Alumni are welcome to attend the Department of Earth Sciences talks and seminars. The programme of talks is available here. Do please contact Alison at if you plan to attend so that we know to expect you.

Recent Events

2016 Alumni Day and Dinner - Saturday 7 May 2016

We were delighted to welcome 120 alumni and their guests from across seven decades for the Earth Sciences Alumni Day and Dinner on 7 May. The afternoon of activities included talks, tours of the Microanalysis Suite, a selection of treasures from the archives, library, and on display in the museum, and our popular undergraduate mapping project talks.

A drinks reception was held in the Sedgwick Museum followed by dinner in Clare College.  It was lovely to welcome so many of you back to the Department. Some of the many photos taken during the day are available on Flickr. Thank you to Richard Stockey and Greg Palmer for recording the event.

Cambridge Earth Sciences Alumni Panel Discussion – Thursday 26 November 2015

How the Earth is trying to kill us: living with geological hazards

Alumni and guests joined us at The Geological Society, London for our first Earth Sciences Alumni Panel Discussion. Short introductions from the panel members were followed by questions from the floor, expertly directed by Dr Chris Smith, the Naked Scientist at Cambridge University. Afterwards alumni had the opportunity to meet the panel and one another informally in the Lower Library where drinks and canapés were served. Photos of the evening are available on Flickr, and a film of the discussion is available on YouTube.

In addition to thanking alumni who attended and contributed to the debate, we would like to thank Dr Chris Smith, who did an excellent job as Chair, and our panellists Professor James Jackson, Dr Marie Edmonds, Dr Alex Copley and Dr Tim Greenfield.


Upcoming events

2017 Alumni Day and Dinner

May 13, 2017

Department of Earth Sciences

Upcoming events

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