Celebrating the graduates of Fall 2020: Margo Regier

Meet some of the graduating class of Fall 2020—and celebrate convocation virtually with them on November 20.

News Staff - 19 November 2020

In 2020, convocation at the University of Alberta is taking place virtually. Join us on November 20th when our graduates, proud family and friends, and instructors will celebrate the class of Fall 2020’s hard work and achievements. 

Today, meet Margo Regier, who not only graduates with a PhD from the Department of Earth and Atmospheric sciences and a trainee of the Diamond Exploration Research Training School, but is also recipient of the prestigious Governor General's Gold Medal, awarded each year to the doctoral graduate who achieves the highest academic standing. Hear from Regier on her time at UAlberta, her experience with support staff and initiatives to increase diversity and inclusivity in the faculty, and her research on the ancient Earth and formation of diamonds.

What led you to pick UAlberta for your studies?

The Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at UAlberta is a powerhouse. When I visited in 2016, I was blown away by the large number of influential faculty members—especially those that focus in my area of research, which is the ancient Earth and the formation of diamonds. In my opinion, the geochemistry facilities and support staff that the department hosts—including in the Arctic Resources Lab and the Canadian Centre for Isotopic Microanalysis—are some of the best in North America. 

Tell us about your experience in the Faculty of Science.

The Faculty of Science is an extremely supportive and cohesive community of faculty, support staff and students. I have had the pleasure to interact with a huge number of people and groups in the Faculty who are actively working to make it a more inclusive and diverse community. This includes UAlberta Working for Inclusivity in Chemistry, Ada's Team, and the Grace Anne Stewart Speaker Series, of which I was an organizing member. A huge shout-out to the important work all these groups do!

What is one of your favourite memories from your time at UAlberta?

My favorite memories at UAlberta are from events that were organized by student groups. The UAlberta Society of Economic Geologists student chapter organized an amazing trip to the beautiful Wells-Gray Provincial Park and various gold and copper mines in British Columbia. 

What advice do you have for current and future students at the Faculty of Science?

Get to know the support staff, as they are the backbone of your department. You will rely on their technical expertise more than you can imagine, and you will rely on their friendships even more. 

How have you spent your time during COVID-19 distancing?

I've taken up a lot of hobbies. I discovered the bright and beautiful work of mycology, rekindled an interest in bird-watching and cross-country skiing, and recently began to dabble in wood-working. I've completed quite the DIY jungle gym course for my kitten. 

How do you plan on celebrating convocation?

A morning ski, an afternoon nap, and evening popcorn and cuddle with my kitten. 

What's next after graduation?

I will begin a postdoc at the Carnegie Science Earth and Planets Laboratory in Washington DC, USA. My research will focus on the chemical evolution of the deep mantle of Earth.