Congratulations to the inaugural 2022 fellows on completing the Caltech Earthquake Fellows program! The Dr. Lucy Jones Center worked in partnership with the Caltech Seismological Laboratory to develop the seismology immersion and research program for high schoolers.
The eleven fellows were selected through a competitive application process from local high schools in Pasadena and Alhambra. Over the four month program, the students learned from leading earthquake scientists, researchers, engineers, and technicians in Southern California. The program was structured to provide the fellows with experience to gain the skills to succeed in university settings. At the end of the fellowship, the students expressed how much they learned about the basic science of earthquakes, computer skills such as recording data and plotting the results, critical thinking skills to analyze the data, experience of the research process, public speaking and poster presentation skills, and their gained exposure to the geology of Los Angeles.
Read more about the program here.
“I want these students to come away from this program with a bigger vision of what is possible for them. Not just that they can go into science– that’s an important part of it– but understanding that going into science could mean a lot of different things. What I hope they have taken away from this, is an understanding that knowledge is not just something imparted to you, but something that you can create.”
–Dr. Lucy Jones
In three groups separated by research question, the fellows presented their findings to their mentors, friends, and families on September 17th. The first group presented on “When and Where Earthquakes Happen.” With the experience of building their own seismometers, they explained how seismometers record earthquakes. Then, with data from the SCSN, they noted the benefits of a denser seismic network for Earthquake Early Warning. Another group researched “How Seismic Noise is Affected by Location and Events Around Us.” They placed their seismometers in various locations and learned how to differentiate between human noise (cars, construction, etc.) and the earthquakes they recorded. The third group used sediment maps and HSVR curves to determine “How Does My Location Affect the Way We See & Feel EQs.” They found how sediment amplification impacts seismic signals and tried using their seismometers to detect fundamental frequency.
Caltech will be running the program again next year. Applications will open early 2023 for high school sophomores and junior in Alhambra and Pasadena. Find the program requirements here.
Thank you to the following organizations who helped make this program a success: