Our field trip to Svalbard was dubbed “Svalex”, which roughly stood for Svalbard Expedition. Statoil have been sponsoring this trip for Norwegian students for 13 years and our experience was the first experiment in bringing it to America. It was meant to be a pedagogical field trip to impress upon us the importance of geology in the oil industry.
And so we did a lot of looking at rocks.
I didn’t know much about rocks before, so I learned a ton while we were there. Every day, we would leave the ship for a shore excursion to look at a particular formation of interest. To do so, we had to get suited up in our warm, waterproof clothes, rubber boots, and life jackets. There was a mud room on board the ship where we got ready and launched.