Laura Westoby, aged 21, and currently studying for an MGeol degree at the University of Leicester will soon begin a four week placement in Indonesia. GfGD will be following and promoting her work over the next month! Laura writes...
"I will be travelling to Indonesia to undertake a placement with Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, Java. As part of my MGeol degree at Leicester I have to complete a report in my 4th year. I have decided to focus this report on Mt Merapi and how it affects the local community. During my visit I hope to meet members of the community who have learnt to live with the danger of Mt Merapi and investigate processes that occur in the community before, during and after an eruption. I also hope to see how research is conducted at the University and how this information is relayed to the community. When I return to Leicester I will integrate my visit with a GIS project and a literature review to create my report.
This is a fantastic opportunity that will hopefully help me develop confidence when visiting new places, meeting new people and travelling alone. It will also introduce me to a side of geology that really interests me – the social aspect and one that hasn't cropped up very often throughout my degree. I will hopefully have the chance to learn some new skills whilst out there, such as how they monitor the volcano and field mapping, and also integrate myself with the local culture – I will be staying for a month!
Hopefully after my visit a connection with Gadjah Mada University will be established allowing more exchanges to take place in the future, both from the UK and also from Indonesia. With an exchange scheme established it will hopefully be easier for students to find funding in advance of a visit."