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Group of Geology alumni shucking oysters at Holy City Brewing.


Group of Geology alumni gathered at Holy City Brewing.


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Alumni Spotlight

Clara Meier '20

Meet Clara Meier, also known as “Clara Caldera,” who graduated from the Honors College at CofC with a Bachelor of Science in Geology in May 2020.

Clara hiking through the Wrangell-St. Elias Preserve in Alaska.

During her undergraduate experience, Clara conducted research with Professor Theodore “Teddy” Them that focused on using Mercury (Hg) as a proxy for studying past and present climate change events. This research led her to her undergraduate thesis which focused on analyzing and interpreting Hg sediments from the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) to determine what may have caused this climate change event. Her research also allowed her to conduct summer field work in Alaska’s Wrangell-St. Elias Nature Preserve. Clara was also an active member and eventual captain of the women’s Ultimate Frisbee team.

Clara presenting PETM research at the international GSA conference in Phoenix, Arizona.
Clara graduated in 2020, the year of Covid. To escape the pandemic, Clara moved to the mountains of Colorado. She participated in a four-month season with the Southwest Conservation Corps on a 14ers trail crew. The goal for the season was to reroute a summit trail leading to the top of one of Colorado’s rugged 14,000 ft. mountains - Kit Carson. 

Clara working on Kit Carson in Colorado to reroute a summit trail for hikers. Lots of rocks!

In June 2021 Clara accepted a yearlong AmeriCorps individual placement position in Santa Fe, New Mexico working in the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) office. The BLM is a government organization that oversees all of America’s public lands. 

One of Clara’s favorite memories is the senior roast (a Department of Geology & Environmental Geosciences tradition) for the class of 2019! Covid cancelled the senior roast for Clara’s graduating class, but she remembers watching the roast as a Junior and thinking how funny, unique and special the tradition is. “It’s not often you find a department as closely knit as this one,” says Clara.
Clara thanks all the faculty in the Department of Geology & Environmental Geosciences for creating such an amazing college experience that was truly one of a kind.


Clara holding her trusty field notebook during field studies out west.

Past Alumni Spotlights:

Manny Byas '19

Mike Passarello '08

Karen Black '10

Izzy Kratchman '14

Contact us if you would like to tell us what you've been up to and maybe be our next Alumni Spotlight!