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From the Editor

Two years ago, Into the Field interviewed Paul Wetmore, Associate Professor of Geology, in an article highlighting the structure mapping section of USF Geology's Field School. In it, Wetmore articulated the need for the School to establish its own permanent field station facility in Idaho, where three of the five Field School sessions take place, to address the rising costs and mounting logistical issues associated with renting both storage space for equipment and teaching/accommodation space for 30-40 students each year. It seemed like such a pie-in-the-sky dream then.

And yet here we are, kicking off a fundraising campaign two years in the making, to do precisely that. The School of Geosciences Chair Mark Rains and Geology Professor Chuck Connor will both tell you it was a long, trailblazing journey to arrive at this milestone. Purchase of out-of-state property alone, much less construction and management of a facility on it, had never been done in USF history, requiring substantial collaboration with the Board of Trustees and legal branches of the University to identify a path to make it happen. However, with the backing of Geosciences faculty, the Geology Alumni Society (GAS), and the College of Arts & Sciences, the path was identified and the project was green- (and gold-) lighted, with great enthusiasm and support by the University.

It's inspiring to witness the devotion of the School of Geosciences and GAS to its students—most of whom will never appreciate the fierce and tireless advocacy led on their behalf to ensure their success post-graduation. It's also an exciting time to root for our program as alumni and play a role in continuing its success. On behalf of both the School of Geosciences and GAS, we invite you to kick back, enjoy this issue, and raise a glass of your favorite brew this holiday season in a nation-wide group toast to our achievements and to what I'm sure will be even more amazing progress two years from now.

-- Dorien McGee, Ph.D., Class of 2010