New Face: Simon Jowitt

UK native Simon Jowitt indicates cooperation as a crucial to expert success.


2 reasons– to start with, the opportunity. My position here at UNLV emerged after teacher Jean Cline, the previous economic geologist in the department of geoscience, retired after a very efficient career. I jumped at the opportunity to transfer to UNLV to be based in a state like Nevada where mining is still a big industry. The 2nd factor is the university itself; UNLV is clearly enthusiastic and I didn’t wish to relocate to a university that appeared to be cruising.

What about UNLV strikes you as various from other locations you have worked?

I’m unsure there are substantial distinctions between UNLV and the other universities I have actually operated at. Something that does come to mind is the weather condition; having actually matured in the UK and having actually resided in Melbourne, Australia, the heat here is a bit of a change but a minimum of it’s a dry heat. The U.S. system is a bit various to the UK and Australian systems however there are also a lot of similarities, something that has actually reduced my shift to working at UNLV

Before UNLV.

I got my undergraduate degree at the University of Edinburgh, a master’s degree at Camborne School of Mines, and my Ph.D. at the University of Leicester, prior to investing nearly eight years at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.


I grew up in West Yorkshire, in northern England; the best bit of the UK (although I’m pretty prejudiced given I’m a proud Yorkshireman).

What inspired you to get into your field?

I readied at geography at school but I wanted to concentrate on the physical element of the subject rather than the human aspect. Studying geoscience appeared the natural way to do this and it has ended up pretty well.

Your area of research

I’m an economic geologist in a very broad sense. My primary area of research study is comprehending the geological procedures that form ore deposits and how we can use this understanding to establish strategies to find new mineral deposits. I likewise undertake research in igneous petrology and magmatism, the ecological effect of mining, and mineral economics and worldwide metal resources.

Exactly what do you find most interesting about your field?

That’s a hard one. I find a substantial range of things intriguing about geoscience and the method the Earth works. Geoscience and economic geology in particular is a field that is so interconnected with other fields and with the method we live that it is tough to pin down one single aspect. Which’s exactly what I love about it– no single piece of research study nor one single day is the same as the next.

Inform us about an object in your office that has significance for you

Given I’m a geologist it has to be a rock, actually. I have a sample of chalcopyrite-bearing rock from an area of Canada called Sudbury. The rock itself isn’t really hugely appealing; some shiny sections that contain exposed, brassy colored sulfide minerals. The area it is from hosts world-class nickel, copper, and platinum group aspect mineralization that formed some 1,849 million years ago, which is fairly remarkable in itself. However the nature of the procedures that formed this deposit set it apart– the mineralization at Sudbury formed as a result of a meteorite effect, namely the 2nd biggest meteorite impact understood in the world.

The distinct mix of procedures that formed this deposit is definitely thought-provoking however for me as a geologist the important things that makes the rock sample in my office considerable is the concept that we can take that rock, examine it and others, and figure out that the mineralization in this location need to have happened as an outcome of such an unusual combination of geological processes. If we can unwind this secret utilizing the proof provided by rocks like this, then there is no reason that we can’t unravel other substantially complicated geological problem.

Inform us about a time in your life when you have been bold.

One time that occurs is doing geological fieldwork in Nunavik in northern Quebec. The camp we were based at was remote and field groups were flown out from camp and back every day by helicopter. Performance and fuel costs, and so on, imply that the helicopter doesn’t closed down between each pick up and drop off, so entering and out of a helicopter with the blades spinning on rough ground gets the adrenalin going a bit. It’s safe if you know what you are doing and we had a competent pilot and knowledgeable geologists however I’m fairly tall (6 feet 4 inches) and the noise, downdraft, and uneven ground all made it a little fascinating sometimes.

Tips for success

Work hard, do not hesitate to work together with individuals outside of your instant field, and do not be blinkered. If somebody concerns speak to you about some science that is outside of your present focus, do not dismiss them however listen to them and seriously consider getting involved. A few of my most productive research study tasks have actually happened due to the fact that I have actually addressed an email from someone outside of my field, whereas others who were on the very same emails overlooked the opportunity.

Suggestions for geoscience trainees

Go out there and see some rocks! Do not hesitate of fieldwork and travel– you discover far more at times in the field than you carry out in lectures or labs.

Outside work

I delight in sport (enjoying and playing when I get the time) and hiking. I’m also a huge fan of craft beer– the USA and Las Vegas in specific have some excellent local breweries and I’m gradually learning more about some of them around here.

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