Francesca Wilcocks - ResM Geological Sciences

"I am currently researching the geochemistry of basaltic lava samples on Earth, and comparing them to the basaltic rocks we find in the form of meteorites from the Moon and Mars. Hopefully, the comparison of these against the terrestrial rocks of a known formation will provide an insight into the formation of these rocks on the Moon and Mars."

Francesca Wilcocks

"I chose to study in Plymouth because I really like the area and its closeness to the sea. As well as this, I had friends who did their geology degrees at the University of Plymouth and they really enjoyed the course. The range of field trips that were advertised was also a big incentive."

"Prior to my postgraduate programme, I was studying my undergraduate degree in BSc (Hons) Geology also at the University of Plymouth."

"I’ve found the subject I’m doing really inspiring. We are still finding so much new information about planetary science, and it’s really rewarding to know that the work I am doing in my masters may influence that current work and understanding on the evolution of our solar system." 

"The academic staff have been really supportive throughout my projects, and have been really quick at answering emails and any questions that I have. As well as this, they are always offering opportunities that are coming up related to the field I’m in, conferences I could present at etc."

"Before I came to Plymouth, I had a huge interest in planetary science but I didn’t think there was anywhere to go career wise in the subject. Since then, I have been introduced to so many people and opportunities that will allow me to get my foot in the door within the field. I didn’t have a career path in mind before I came to Plymouth, but I definitely have more of an idea now."

Geology Students on fieldtrip to Kilve on the north Somerset Coast.

"My favourite memory from Plymouth is probably my undergraduate mapping camp. I spent a month in Spain with four of my friends studying the geology for our dissertations. It was weird that the whole degree essentially lead up to that point, it was so much fun and it was really nice to use everything we learnt in the field to piece together the geological history."

"All the staff members are really approachable, and very helpful in providing advice about career choices, as well as introducing you to people who may be able to help you further in your studies. The field trips are also such good experiences, and so much fun to meet more people on your course as well as get to know more about the areas you visit."

"The careers service at the University have been really helpful in providing advice about my CV, cover letter and career choices throughout both my undergraduate and postgraduate."

University scientists help to unlock hidden secrets of UK meteorite

Scientists from the University of Plymouth are helping to uncover the secrets of a rare meteorite which could possibly reveal the origins of oceans and life on Earth.

Dr Natasha Stephen and colleagues have been trying to determine the mineralogy and chemistry of the Winchcombe meteorite

Read the press release
A variety of images from the JEOL 7001F SEM within PEMC. The top images (black and white) are backscattered electron images, showing atomic contrast in the Winchcombe meteorite; bright areas are metal-rich, containing nickel, iron, or chromium, whereas darker areas are mineral-rich. The bottom, coloured images are combined X-ray element maps of the same regions, showing chemical composition of the mineral and metal grains. These maps show the variety of different textures, size and composition of grains within the Winchcombe meteorite

A variety of images from the JEOL 7001F SEM within PEMC.

Inspired by this story?

For more information about our range of courses within the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, please visit the school page.

Want to find similar alumni?

If you would like to find out what other relevant alumni are currently doing, please visit the marine, earth, geography and environment interest area.

Student walking across red cliffs, on a geology field trip.