The UK's Nationwide Geology Club for Children

Jane Robb

PhD student in Geology
Currently, I am a PhD student at the Natural Resources Institute and the University of Greenwich, researching the drivers of deforestation in Guatemala as part of a UN REDD+ project there. Some of my proudest achievements so far…I published my first peer reviewed paper from my masters research at 21, after working with the Natural History Museum in London while a student at University College London. I then went on to found my own social enterprise helping young people understand their values and aspirations to improve social mobility, which has received £15,000 of funding and is still going strong today. I started “I’m a Geoscientist – Get Me Out of Here!”, a Europe wide initiative for kids to get into geology while I lived in Munich working for the European Geosciences Union. The first run engaged over 500 children from 17 countries. More recently, I have contributed to the development of the UN REDD+ programme by developing and implementing the methodology for assessing drivers of deforestation in a region of Guatemala. My results were reported to the USAID funded Climate, Nature and Communities Guatemala project. Rockwatch has really given me a great head start for almost everything I have done so far, for instance, it helped me get my first job in Dynamic Earth, a stepping stone to much of my later work in science and education. For entering university, my involvement with Rockwatch was also a key point in my personal statement. Being a part of Rockwatch really helped me learn new things and engage, understand and enjoy geology more than I would have if doing it on my own. Rockwatch is an experience I will always look back on and feel proud of and would definitely recommend to any keen young earth or environmental scientist! After my PhD, I don’t yet know where I will go next. My career has been incredibly varied until now, ranging from geology to heritage science to education and now, to deforestation and development, so I don't know where life will take me! At each stage so far, starting from being part of Rockwatch, I have made the most of the interesting opportunities I have discovered – living in London, Munich and Guatemala; learning Spanish – and I intend to continue down that path! Susan Brown (Rockwatch Chair) adds: Jane has been a Rockwatch competition winner many times, a Rockstar of the Year on a number of occasions and written articles for our Rockwatch Magazine.

Author: Helen Connolly

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