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Ann Hunt: Rockin' Undergraduate Research

Ann Hunt studies geology in Voyageurs National Park.
August 18, 2016

When Ann Hunt was a girl, her family spent vacations at Lake Kabetogama.

They drove up from East Bethel, Minn. to Voyageurs National Park to fish and enjoy the wilderness. That's when Ann became fascinated by the pink minerals within the rocks and that's where she learned to love geology. 

Now she knows that the pink mineral she collected as a child was a type of feldspar named Orthoclase. Now she's a UMD geology and math major working on a UROP, an undergraduate research opportunities project. 

This year, her summer project is to study migmatites, rocks identified by a distinct mixture of dark- and light-colored components.

“Migmatites form at high temperatures and pressures within the Earth’s deep crust,” she says. “We can learn a lot about the geological history of the area by identifying how migmatites formed. Did they form by local partial melting or by injection of nearby magma?” 

Ann has plans that go into the next decade. She wants to pursue a masters degree in geology after graduating with a double major in geology and mathematics. She wants to do more field study, potentially working for the Minnesota Geological Survey. And after all of that, she would like to get a doctorate in geology and become a professor.

Judging from the knowledge and enthusiasm she has for geology, she will accomplish all of her plans and more.