Guest post by Robin Evans:
Dr. Phil Pearthree is the acting interim Director of the Arizona Geological Survey and he presented a program on October 5th to the members of the Arizona Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists regarding the AZGS and University of Arizona merger. He spent a good amount of time talking about the museum and seemed very optimistic that it would be reopened. Speaking about the AZGS budget, he presented many good reasons encouraging the different geological organizations as well as the students present to write to the Governor’s office and to the legislature to restore the funding for AZGS. The University of Arizona will be sending out their own team of people to review the structure of the museum to get an accurate estimate for the repairs in and around the building. Also, I found out that Lee Allison’s replacement will be appointed by the Dean of the Science college, not the Governor. Dr. Pearthree is a very upbeat person, and it appeared that this was a cause he really supported. He mentioned to the audience that there was a need to get children interested in the earth sciences and asked everyone to look around the room and the reflect on the amount of gray hair present. The museum was a way to getting kids into the science pipeline and that pipeline is currently shut off, as proven by the fact that only three college students showed up for the presentation and they were given a free dinner and beverages for the evening – two from Glendale Community College and one from ASU (and the event was at a brew pub in Scottsdale).