Keystone College receives Pittsburgh Conference Grant

June 19th, 2015 9:09 am

First Posted: 12/19/2013

Keystone College has received a $10,000 grant from the Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy for the purchase of state-of-the–art geologic equipment.

Keystone’s grant proposal was one of 13 grants selected nationally for funding by the non-profit organization which sponsors the Pittsburgh Conference Memorial National College Grant Program.

The funding will be used to supplement a previous $75,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission for the purchase of advance equipment such as petrographic microscopes and ground-penetrating radar as well as curriculum development and training.

“We are extremely grateful to the Pittsburgh Conference for this generous and much-needed grant. The funding we have received will make our already strong program even better as we prepare our students for successful careers in the field of geology,” said Keystone Assistant Geology Professor Dr. Ian Saginor.

Keystone introduced a new geology program in the fall of 2013 which seeks to provide students with a broad understanding of the fundamental workings of the earth, including plate tectonics, natural resource and mineral formation, weathering and erosion, and climate change. The four-year-degree, which combines classroom instruction with extensive training in laboratory and field skills, is intended to prepare students to work as geoscience professionals in fields such as the natural gas industry, environmental consulting, and positions with state, local and national environmental agencies. The U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects growth in geoscience jobs over the coming decade to expand at a rate exceeding many other professions.

“There are many geoscience jobs and a shortage of qualified workers. Keystone graduates will be well positioned to compete for these openings in the future,” Dr. Saginor said.

The grant will officially be awarded at Pittcon 2014 in Chicago.

The Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy awards up to $10,000 to the science departments of colleges with less than 5,000 full-time students for the purchase of scientific equipment, audio-visual or other teaching aids, and/or library materials for use in the teaching of science at the undergraduate level.

Approximately 78 proposals were evaluated by the committee which consists of members of the two societies that sponsor Pittcon, the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh (SACP) and the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh (SSP).