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UCMP presents a paleontology course for OLLI

This semester, 75 enthusiastic Osher Lifelong Learning Institute participants enrolled in a six-week paleontology course. Organized by Marty Pollard, a retired Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory engineer, UCMP curators, staff, and graduate students highlighted current research topics in paleontology. The course started with a history of the UCMP and an overview of paleontology in the Bay Area (Mark Goodwin), followed by patterns and consequences of extinctions through time (Seth Finnegan), extinctions among large-bodied terrestrial vertebrates (Emily Lindsey), multiple approaches to studying the evolution of vertebrates (Ashley Poust and Sarah Werning), fossil turtles and climate change (Pat Holroyd), and paleontological studies in the Olduvai Gorge (Leslea Hlusko). The final course session included a tour of the UCMP collections and the prep lab with participation from Jason Carr, Jenny Hofmeister, and Whitney Reiner. We were delighted by the overwhelming response to the course that was originally expected to draw only 40 people. OLLI participants were clearly impressed by the diversity of research at the UCMP, the high quality of the students, and the overall enthusiasm of the speakers.

Mark Goodwin Jenny Hofmeister
In the prep lab Leslea Hlusko

Click on any of the above photos to see an enlargement. Top left: Mark Goodwin explains the geologic history of the San Francisco Bay Area. Top right: Jenny Hofmeister tells the class about UCMP's T. rex skeletal mount. Bottom left: Jason Carr shows class participants around the prep lab. Bottom right: Leslea Hlusko talks about research at Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania.

All photos by Martin Pollard