Geological Sciences Pre Grad Intern Laura Dafov

Laura Dafov“As the first in my family to pursue a Ph.D., and the first to complete an undergraduate degree in the United States, I have benefited greatly from the resources of the Intellectual Entrepreneurship (IE) Consortium which provided valuable information about applying to graduate schools, mentorship from professors and graduate students, and the opportunity to pursue an undergraduate research project. In fact, I plan to present the research I conducted through IE at the Annual Geological Society of America (GSA) meeting this fall in Denver, Colorado—one of the largest annual geoscience conferences. This not only will give me the chance to talk about my IE research project but also to expend my network in the geoscience community.

I have always been a bit shy when talking to professors, so the IE internship was the perfect way for me to reach out to two faculty members, Prof. David Mohrig and Prof. Daniel Stockli; I also reached out to graduate student Kelsi Ustipak to be my mentor. The IE internship encouraged me to engage in interviews of my mentors and kept me thinking about applying to graduate schools and what graduate student life would entail. Furthermore, the IE internship allowed me to think about how to combine two different sub-disciplines in the geosciences, sedimentology and geochronology, which I now can utilize in graduate school. I highly encourage undergraduates who are timid about approaching professors or engaging in research to use the IE internship as a way to break the ice. I am thankful for the opportunities the IE internship gave me and greatly look forward to future research endeavors!"

2016-2017 UPDATE:

IE STUDENT CONDUCTS PROMISING RESEARCH THAT MAY LEAD TO CLEAN ENERGY: Kudos to 2015 IE-Geosciences Pre Grad intern Laura Dafov, now a doctoral student at Stanford! Her research about methane hydrates (the next big source of energy which is a cleaner burning fuel, "ice fire") is very promising. The Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded Laura a substantial amount of grant money to support her project. NOTE: Methane hydrates is of global importance because it is found at every continent (globally spread), is almost 3 times larger in energy volume than all known fossil fuels (oil, gas, and coal), and is found in the shallow earth sediments and permafrost.

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