Although I haven’t been getting a lot of posts written lately, we’ve been very busy in the lab, ramping up our molding and casting program and preparing to start a new grant. We’re also having some personnel changes.
Elizabeth Fisher (left, above) has been working with us as a volunteer intern all summer, learning and practicing various fossil preparation techniques and helping Ray produce molds and casts. She’s learned so much that she’s been offered a paid position as a fossil preparator at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. I’d like to thank Elizabeth for all the excellent work she did for us this year, and wish her well at the Field Museum.
Earlier this week, we also hired Christina Byrd (right, above) to fill a Paleontology Technician position specifically to work on our NSF fossil insect grant. Christina has worked with VMNH before; she’s a veteran of several Carmel Church excavations and did her undergraduate thesis on the taphonomy of cetacean vertebrae at Carmel Church. She recently completed her masters at Marshall University, working on plesiosaur ontogeny. Christina spent the summer on a paleontology program in Panama, and less than three days after returning to the U.S. she was on her way to Virginia Tech to help with loading the collection of fossil plants that was just transferred to VMNH.
Christina was also featured (back when she was still an undergraduate) in the video we used to promote our Petridish fundraising campaign.