FLC News

Geologist shows gratitude to FLC with research fund [VIDEO]

Monday, February 27, 2017

Alumnus Peter Mesard says he chose to attend Fort Lewis College because of the outdoors—the skiing and the mountain climbing, especially. But his academic experience is what stuck with him, so much so that he has established the Peter Mesard Undergraduate Research Fund for present and future FLC students.

Mesard (Geology and Engineering, ’76) also made a five-year pledge to support construction of FLC’s new Geosciences, Physics & Engineering Hall, which opened its doors in Spring 2017. To show appreciation, FLC named the GPE Hall’s Peter M. Mesard Mineralogy & Petrology Laboratory in his honor.

“I am so grateful and thankful for the experience I had at Fort Lewis,” says Mesard,  the principal engineer at Exponent Engineering & Scientific Consulting in Oakland, California. “The very quantitative engineering side of things, and the less quantitative, more observational skills you develop as a geologist, were just a fantastic meld, and I think that combination has really served me well in my career.”

“When I got out of college, the environmental consulting business was almost nonexistent,” he says of his current career path. “All that I had to learn to develop expertise in this area, I learned using the tools I learned at Fort Lewis.”

That innovative career has taken Mesard far afield from Durango, but his heart is still at FLC, he says. He still recalls a bittersweet moment during the graduation ceremony in April 1977.

“The last day before I had to drive to the airport, I walked around the rim of the mesa, like I used to do, just crying my eyes out,” he says. “I just could not believe I was going to leave Durango. I could have very happily stayed there my whole life.”

Mesard may reside in California now, but thanks to his passion for undergraduate research, his name and his contributions will live on at FLC for generations of students to come.

Number of views (37396)

Save the bee, save the world

Save the bee, save the world

USDA to fund Fort Lewis College honey bee research

Unlike larger institutions where the prime research opportunities are reserved for graduate students, Dr. Collins looks for ways to involve his undergraduate students in his work. Students help maintain the research apiary (beehive) on campus, for example. In the lab, students are synthesizing various molecules and testing their effectiveness against another honey bee adversary, the Varroa mite. 

Students develop social marketing campaigns for local businesses

Students develop social marketing campaigns for local businesses

If you’re not already on social media, you can download the apps and get started in a matter of moments. But learning how to use social media effectively is much more difficult than searching the app store, and there’s no better way to learn than by doing. That’s why social media marketing students at FLC work in tandem with local companies to develop new marketing strategies and campaigns.

Friends of Fort Lewis College come through on river company fundraising goal

Friends of Fort Lewis College come through on river company fundraising goal

Students in programs from geology to anthropology to adventure education can enjoy the hands-on learning experiences that become possible through access to the Rio Chama and San Juan rivers in New Mexico and the Salt River in Arizona. From time to time, alumni and friends of the College may also be offered the chance to gather on the rivers for learning and enrichment opportunities.