The Students


Stephanie Higgins

Stephanie Higgins

Stephanie Higgins '04


Stephanie is a senior physics major who is also planning to pursue a masters degree in materials science engineering at the University of Connecticut. She will examine the levels of radioactive radium 226 in sediment from Antarctica. Stephanie loves to travel the world, and is thrilled to have the opportunity to be traveling through South America and to the Antarctic.
Contact Stephanie at shiggins@hamilton.edu.


Josh Kinsman

Joshua Kinsman

Joshua Kinsman '06


Josh is a sophomore geology major with an emphasis in environmental science at the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire, the Center of Excellence for Faculty and Student Research Collaboration in the University of Wisconsin System.This will be his first trip to Antarctica and he is extremely excited to be participating in this project.

Josh is being sponsored on this project by Kent Syverson, a glacial geologist at the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire.  UW-Eau Claire is the Center of Excellence for Faculty and Student Research Collaboration in the University of Wisconsin System. As part of this, Syverson has spent much time studying till stratigraphy, glacial landforms, and the Pleistocene history of western Wisconsin with undergraduate students during the past twelve years. Syverson and students have used clay mineralogy and a regional database of till properties to better understand the glaciation of the region. They also have studied the formation of ice-walled-lake plains and high-relief, hummocky moraines. Syverson has spent significant time in southeastern Alaska studying esker genesis, ice-contact-lake sedimentology, and the complex ice-flow patterns that occur during the deglaciation of high-relief areas. These long-standing interests have recently led Syverson to develop a research program in Maine that involves UW-Eau Claire undergraduates.
Contact Josh at kinsmajw@uwec.edu.

Gemma Kirkwood

Gemma Kirkwood

Gemma Kirkwood '05


Gemma is a junior majoring in both geology and mathematics. Her interests include mathematical modeling, climate, mineralogy and fractal geometry. She is particularly interested in applied mathematics in geology.

Last summer Gemma remained on campus working on geomicrobiology research under the direction of Dr. Mike McCormick. This research focused on the role of an outer membrane protein on the adsorption of Geobacter Sulfurreducens to Geothite. She has also worked in Hamilton as a math grader and geology tutor.

This is Gemma's first trip to Antarctica. She is eager to experience the many aspects of the Antarctic and make the most of this amazing opportunity. Even the cold climate does not concern her, considering that she has experienced some extreme climate conditions while living in Egypt and Venezuela. While in Egypt, Gemma graduated high school from Cairo American College. She currently lives in Skene, Aberdeenshire, Scotland.
Contact Gemma at gkirkwoo@hamilton.edu.

James Maritz

Jimmy Maritz

James A. Maritz '05


Jimmy is from St. Louis and is a geology major at Colgate University. He enjoys playing music, participating in the Colgate Theater as a lighting designer, and has a passion for the outdoors. He loves to backpack the trails and fish the rivers of the Missouri Ozarks. His previous geology field work includes studies with the Colgate Geology Off-Campus program. Jimmy was a member of the Sea Education Association class 189, sailing from Woods Hole to Tobago and to St. Croix. His oceanographic research while at sea focused on Orinoco river plume sedimentation near Tobago. Jimmy looks forward to studying sediments once again. He will analyze downcore diatom abundances in sediment cores from the western Weddell Sea. These data will contribute to our understanding of ice shelf history.
Contact Jimmy at jmaritz@mail.colgate.edu.

Gina Quinones

Gina Quinones


Gina is currently a graduate student at Montclair State University's Earth and Environmental Studies Department and is pursuing a degree in environmental science. She has worked at the university's Marine Biology Laboratory since June of 2003. Before coming to MSU, Gina received her undergraduate degree in Biology from City University of New York (CUNY), Queens College. Her current research project focuses on the ability to use benthic invertebrates as bio-indicators in the Bronx River, New York. This project is a multidisciplinary survey of the Bronx River in conjunction with the GAIA Institute and NOAA. Gina's role in the project involves all aspects of the survey from field collection to species identification with particular emphasis on the polychaetes. This is Gina's first trip to Antarctica, and while aboard the R/V Lawrence M. Gould, Gina will be sub sampling benthic grabs. All animals collected from the sub samples will be sorted and identified to the lowest taxonomic level possible. Results could indicate a potential shift in communities based on changes in the Larsen Ice Shelf.
Contact Gina at quinonesg1@mail.montclair.edu.

Heather Schrum

Heather Schrum

Heather Schrum '05


Heather Schrum, a geology major and mathematics minor, is presently in her junior year. She holds two jobs on campus: one at the Writing Center and the other as a teacher's assistant and tutor for Ocean Science. The minute Heather was notified about her acceptance to the Antarctica Program, she became enthralled in every aspect of the continent. Heather presently works in cooperation with Professor Eugene Domack on an independent study entitled "Antarctica: Skimming the Surface." The course has been designed so that she may explore specific geological and biological topics, along with the influence of humans on the Antarctic. Heather's senior thesis project will focus on the research done during the cruise. After Hamilton, Heather plans on obtaining a Ph.D. in marine geology. Contact Heather at hschrum@hamilton.edu.

Phil Szymcek

Phillip Szymcek

Phillip Szymcek '04


Phillip is a master's student at Southern Illinois University. He received a B.S. in geology from SIU in December of 2003, and since then has begun graduate research at SIU. Phillip's research interests include paleontology, paleoecology, biostatistics, and geochemistry. His research will incorporate temporal and spatial variations in foraminiferal taxonomy and geochemical analysis of some varieties of foraminifera. Phil has been doing student research on Antarctic foraminifera under Dr. Scott Ishman since 2001, and in geology since before his college career. He has presented research at the GSA and AGU, and he plans to pursue a research career in paleoecology.
Contact Phllip at phillszymcek@hotmail.com