Graduate student Heather Winslow in the Department of Geological Sciences and Engineering received the American Geophysical Union (AGU) Outstanding Student Presentation Award (OSPA) for her presentation at the Fall Meeting 2019. Senior scientists serve as judges within specific fields. Winslow was one of just 10 awardees in the section of Volcanology, Geochemistry, Petrology which had 10 awardees out of 181 student presentations that were judged. One of the Department’s current faculty members, Joel Scheingross, also received this honor while a student. According to the AGU, this prestigious award is only granted to the top 5% of student participants for effectively presenting quality research.
“Receiving this award is a huge honor,” Winslow said. “I am greatly appreciative of the feedback I received on my poster and presentation. This award was a great confirmation of all the hard work I had put into my research as well as the decisions made for how to effectively convey the science.”
One of the benefits for students attending AGU conferences are interactions with other scientists.
“I was able to have conversations and debates about my specific science with experts in the field as well as people in different disciplines,” Winslow said. “It provides perspective and makes you think through your research in different ways.”
Winslow is currently working on her dissertation under advisor Philipp Ruprecht. The research she presented is part of that work. Winslow presented on the novel science she is conducting to understand how magmas evolve from basalt to rhyolite in the crust, particularly her findings from the 2011-12 eruption at Puyehue-Cordón Caulle (Chile) that provides a unique dataset advancing this question of magma evolution.
“Her presentation was an excellent mix of detailed datasets connected to the broader questions that the scientific community is interested in,” Ruprecht said. “She was very engaging in her presentation with a crowd of scientists continuously flocking around her poster for 4+ hours. I don’t think she had a single quiet moment all afternoon that day.”
Winslow received a cash prize and free registration for next year’s AGU meeting. Winslow will be putting the funds to good use.
“I went to Chile in early March for field work pertaining to the research my poster was on,” Winslow said. “Having this cash prize was extremely beneficial for preparing to go into the field. I needed to update some of my field supplies such as waterproofing my tent, and this prize took on some of that burden.”
The award was well-deserved, as Winslow’s advisor agrees.
“Over the 3+ years she has been at UNR, Heather has tremendously grown as a scientist and I frequently receive positive comments about her ability to communicate her work with scientific visitors and collaborators,” Ruprecht said. “I am super excited about this award for her and I agree that she is greatly deserving of this honor.”