Written by Melissa Kaye, Geology Museum Volunteer


When I first came to the Rutgers Geology Museum, I was not expecting to find much. I thought that I would see some fossils and minerals and that would be the end of it. However, my experience ended up being so much more than just rocks and dinosaurs. After my first visit, I knew that I wanted to make geology a part of my life more permanently. I made the decision to volunteer at the museum during the late night events and did whatever I could to help out and make the museum a better place.

Soon after I began volunteering, I was asked to become involved in RUGM field trips to Ringing Rocks Park and Big Brook Park. While I was excited about the notion of becoming a part of the geology museum family, I had no idea what to expect from these trips. After attending several field trips, I can honestly say that coming to the museum was one of the best decisions I have ever made.

My first trip was to Ringing Rocks Park in Little Black Eddy, Pennsylvania. Now, I like geology, but rocks and minerals are not my favorite things to study. Going to Ringing Rocks Park seemed more like something I had to do rather than something I would actually enjoy doing. However, my mood quickly changed when I saw the huge boulder field and beautiful waterfall on the county park's property. I had never been that close to nature before, and I enjoyed and appreciated the experience more than I can express in words. Hearing the rocks ring like bells, which is a phenomenon that can be found in only three places in the world, is something astonishing that I will never forget.

I was extremely excited to go fossil hunting at Big Brook Park in Colts Neck, New Jersey. Digging for fossils is something that I have always wanted to do, and being able to do it with the museum made the experience even more amazing. Searching for fossils in the creek with people of all ages created a learning experience for everyone, myself included. I found fossils of shells, squids, and even a shark's tooth.

These experiences encouraged to me learn more about Geology and led to me registering for several paleontology and geology courses. But most of all, these trips kindled in me the desire to share these experiences with others. I look forward to many more memorable trips traipsing through creeks and climbing over boulders in the search for more geologic wonders.



Geology Museum Field Trips

For more information about field trips run by the Rutgers Geology Museum please click on the following links.