Even if you don’t travel to Guatemala or Peru, as a geological engineering student, you’ll have the chance to travel to plenty of places around the state and region. Missouri’s geology, especially in the Ozark region that includes Rolla and much of the southern portion of the state, is unique and offers many learning and research opportunities. The region’s karst topography includes hundreds of caves, sinkholes and odd geological formations.
Examples of recent or recurring field trips:
- Students visit the Central Mine Equipment Company in St. Louis, where they:
- Learn how drilling rigs and equipment are manufactured,
- Are given drilling demonstrations; and
- Are allowed to drive a tracked rig using a remote control.
- Students visit Graniteville, Missouri, where they:
- Learn how large concrete blocks (up to 35 tons) are extracted from the ground at Missouri red granite quarries, and
- Explore Elephant Rocks State Park and Hughes Mountain, where rare geological structures can be observed.
- Students visit Springfield Underground, where they:
- Explore underground storage chambers, and
- Watch an underground rock crusher and inclined shaft, which brings crushed rock up to the surface processing plant.
- Students visit Winter Brothers in St. Louis, where they:
- Watch sand and gravel get dredged from the floodplains of the Meramec River, loaded into barges and pushed by tugboat to a processing plant.
- Students visit U.S. Silica mine in Pacific, Missouri, where they:
- Watch almost pure silica get extracted using a water cannon that breaks up the silica rock into small fragments.