Emily Mixon Receives 2019 Harriet Evelyn Wallace Scholarship

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March 8, 2019
Photo of Emily Mixon
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) congratulates Emily Mixon as one of two 2019 recipients of the Harriet Evelyn Wallace Scholarship. This highly competitive scholarship, which is awarded each year to two women pursuing graduate degrees in geoscience, provides a $5,000 award for one academic year.
Mixon is a master's student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Department of Geosciences. She is a member of the WiscAr lab group, named for the argon dating technique which is used to understand geologic processes over tens of thousands to tens of millions of years.
"My bread and butter is geochronology and igneous petrology – looking at how [magma] compositions, volumes, and overall eruptive behavior might have changed through time," said Mixon.
For her master's degree, Mixon is studying the eruptive history of Calbuco, a stratovolcano in southern Chile, and how the volcano's history relates to the growth and retreat of glaciers in the Andes mountains over the past 200,000 years. In January 2019, she conducted field work in Chile to collect measurements and samples; her next step is to analyze the data and reconstruct the changes through geochronology, geochemical analysis, and thermodynamic computer modeling.
According to Mixon, that analytical work can be expensive for a first-year graduate student, even with existing sources of funding. "We came back from the field and I spent a week putting together the budget for what all of the lab analysis would cost. It's a little overwhelming."
Fortunately, the Wallace Scholarship money will help fill critical gaps in Mixon's funding, going toward whole-rock geochemistry and 40Ar/39Ar Argon dates, both of which are essential parts of her project.
Mixon's research is also supported in part by the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, and her January 2019 field season was supported by a National Geographic Society grant given to her advisor, Brad Singer.
The Wallace Scholarship supports women geoscientists in graduate school and is awarded to applicants who demonstrate strong likelihood of successfully transitioning into the geoscience workforce. Wallace Scholars who are continuing their graduate studies are eligible to apply for the award a second time. The original bequest was given by Harriet Evelyn Wallace, one of the founding members of the Geoscience Information Society. To learn more about the Wallace Scholarship, go to
Funding for the Wallace Scholarship is provided through a new partnership with IF/THEN, an initiative of Lyda Hill Philanthropies.
To make a tax-deductible donation to support women geoscientists through the Wallace Scholarship Fund, go to https://bit.ly/GeoWomen2019.
About AGI
The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) is a nonprofit federation of more than 50 scientific and professional associations that represents over a quarter-million geoscientists. Founded in 1948, AGI provides geoscientists with access to scholarly information, serves as a voice of shared interests in the profession, plays a major role in strengthening geoscience education, and strives to increase public awareness of the vital role the geosciences play in society's use of resources, resiliency to natural hazards, and health of the environment.
AGI is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to serving the geoscience community and addressing the needs of society. AGI headquarters are in Alexandria, Virginia.
The American Geosciences Institute represents and serves the geoscience community by providing collaborative leadership and information to connect Earth, science, and people.
AGI Contact:
Joseph Lilek