Our outreach activities have primarily focussed on encouraging the study of geophysics, and we should also consider promoting demand for geophysicists.
The CSEG has a very strong outreach program. The CSEG Foundation, the charitable arm of the society, manages outreach as part of its portfolio of activities. The Foundation has received encouragement from our membership for its various activities in the form of donations from individual members, and I can’t imagine a higher form of encouragement. Except perhaps busy professionals willing to dedicate their time. With a range of outreach activities, a volunteer-run organization like ours needs a wide array of volunteers.
Outreach activities, as listed at cseg.ca/foundation, include:
- The Schools and Public Outreach.
- Earth Science for Society, an annual three day, free exhibition with hands-on geoscience activities for the public and junior high school students.
- Seismic in Motion for Students, a joint CAGC/ CSEG program that takes university and high-school students and industry personnel to see seismic field operations.
- The Ambassador program, where CSEG volunteers host and coordinate events for Geoscientists across Canada.
- The Challenge Bowl.
- The University Student Outreach program.
Outreach has grown to the size that it is because of its success over the past decades. Past, current, and new volunteers are encouraged by the growth and enthusiasm shown by those we reach.
Our society is highly successful developing a wide range of students interested in geophysics, and we need to take our success in developing the supply of geophysicists and see how we can affect the demand for geophysicists.
We have an initiative called Value in Geophysics, or VIG, with the aim to reach out to other resource professionals with case histories and even a DoodleTrain course on the “Value of Geophysics with case histories”. This initiative is a great start, and I wonder how we can expand the scope and reach of its message of the importance of geophysics.
I don’t know if we should be like accountants and, a few years ago, IT network professionals and have billboards and bus ads, but I would certainly like to see the general public more aware of our profession and the value we add in reduced exploration risk and reduced environmental impact of resource extraction. My imagination for this kind of thing is limited, but I would certainly like to see more positive news stories, like the recent CTV coverage at Seismic in Motion.
Wouldn’t it be great if one of the first questions investors asked was, “What kind of seismic technology do you plan to use to reduce drilling costs?” If executives and investors had a better understanding of where to apply quantitative interpretation or depth imaging or a host of other seismic technologies, Canadian exploration companies would be more successful in our basins and overseas. And we would help encourage demand for jobs and services in our profession.