The sound of inspiration is lectured from professors each day at Weber State University. College of Science students, however, recently heard inspiration from a different source.
Geoscience students were given the unique opportunity of meeting with a WSU alumnus. Glen Dawson, a graduate in geosciences, visited the campus to address science, technology, engineering and mathematics students about the opportunities available within scientific career fields.
Dawson came to school at WSU with an interest in rocks. He graduated from the geoscience program 35 years ago.
Dawson has gone from WSU to the environmental exploration business. In his lecture, he discussed the importance of studying for years at a university and being able to branch out upon graduation.
“Students should develop a passion for whatever they pursue,” Dawson said. “The idea of success is only available with a passion for and the pursuit of knowledge.”
His lecture highlighted his career as a geological explorer and entrepreneur. He also tries to provide opportunities to students if they are willing to “get dirty, start at the bottom, go to graduate school and hold on.”
Dawson said that, in 2012, 1.7 million jobs were available within the geosciences, and he estimated that, by 2035, there will be 3.5 million jobs.
“The jobs might not be available in Utah, but to be successful, students will need to branch out geographically to find those positions,” he said.
Dawson is not the first alumnus to come speak at the university, nor will he be the last. The outreach to all alumni is a big deal to all departments on campus.
“Alumni are important to the university,” said Lisa Largent, development director for the College of Science.
Largent works with alumni to re-engage them with the WSU way of life. She said that bringing in alumni can open students’ eyes to scholastic and career opportunities within their fields or related fields.
The university likes to keep in contact with all alumni, whether by phone number or address. Largent said Dawson was a fortunate find for the college: Provost Michael Vaughan watched a business channel and heard Dawson say he had attended WSU.
Largent contacted Dawson and was pleased to find he wanted to come speak at WSU for the College of Science. Dawson said he was happy to reconnect with the university and department from which he had graduated.
“The College of Science likes to bring in alumni to talk with students as often as possible,” said David Matty, dean of the College of Science. “All students need to hear success stories from prior students. The stories of one speaker may influence and inspire a roomful of students to reach their potential.”
Largent said she wants all alumni to stay in contact with WSU. WSU often sponsors events to promote alumni relations. More information on these events is available at http://alumni.weber.edu/s/953/start.aspx.