20 September 2012
The University of Bristol’s Palaeobiology and Biodiversity Research Group is celebrating the fact that 250 students have now completed its MSc in Palaeobiology, with its first reunion event for former and current Bristol palaeobiologists.
The reunion weekend, which will also be a chance to welcome new members of staff, Dr Davide Pisani and Dr Jakob Vinther, begins with a dinner on Thursday 20 September and concludes on Sunday, 23 September, Events include an update on the Bristol Dinosaur Project, a hands-on fossil session and a field trip too classic Bristol fissures sites.
Liz Martin from Canada was the 250th student to complete the MSc in Palaeobiology which uses the fossil record to study the history of life and how ancient organisms lived. She studied the mechanical properties of the bones of pterosaurs, the largest ever flying animals, to understand their original body weights and whether they could fly or not. The MSc programme was established in 1996, and admits around 15-25 students each year. The University of Bristol has a strong reputation in palaeobiology, and currently hosts the largest palaeobiology research group in any British university.
‘The programme has an enormous impact on British and world palaeontological research,’ said Professor Michael Benton, founder of the degree. ‘Half our students go on to PhD earch in this country and overseas, some receiving highly prestigious awards, and others pursue successful careers in teaching, publishing, the media, and museum work.'
More information on the Bristol Palaeobiology and Biodiversity Research Group, and the reunion weekend can be found here.
Liz Martin, the 250th student to have completed an MSc in Palaeobiology, with an ammonite fossil on the beach at Lyme Regis.