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Heather Stoller, '13

 

Heather Stoller
Stoller at the camel excavation

Heather Stoller, who earned a dual major in geology and earth science in 2011, has traveled far since graduating from Muskingum. Stoller, who hails from Plymouth, Ohio, chose Muskingum because of the Geology Department and women’s golf team. When she toured campus, it “felt like home; I knew I belonged here!” she said.

Following graduation, Stoller moved to Las Vegas, where she received her Master’s Degree in Geoscience at the University of Nevada Las Vegas in 2013. Her thesis focused on “on the Ichnology of the Jurassic Period; in short, it's a study using dinosaur and mammal tracks to reconstruct the Jurassic Period, [which was] approximately 180 million years ago.”

Stoller now works for Arcadis, an international engineering consulting firm, as a Geologist II and Paleontologist. She works throughout Oregon, California and Nevada and recently assisted the excavation of Megatylopus, the largest known camel to ever exist. The specimen is the most complete found in the world.

Stoller says that it was one of her professors, Dr. Van Horn, who pushed her to apply to graduate schools. She says, “An advanced degree can open additional doors compared to a traditional bachelor’s. Without his encouragement, I doubt I would be where I am today!”

Stoller adds that “Muskingum was the perfect size to provide the foundation for a successful life. I was able to do everything from working as a geology lab assistant, which gave me experience required for graduate school, to leading several organizations on campus, providing the confidence and knowledge to lead any group in the corporate world.” She also says, “At the time, the Liberal Arts Education courses not related to my field of study seemed like an inconvenience, but having a variety of knowledge has assisted me more than I ever expected.”

Stoller encourages seniors who are beginning to plan life post-college to “Breathe. Set a plan and take it one step at a time. Don't be afraid to reach out to faculty members for more than just recommendation letters; they have great advice too!”