Sicily: a geological laboratory

Risultato della ricerca: Other

Abstract

“Geologists at risk of extinction”: this is the opening sentence of an article of March 29, 2016 of “Il Sole 24ORE”, (1) that fits well the difficult situation that this professional category is experiencing in recent years. Ithas been witnessed, in fact, a strong reduction in the educational offer in both the school and university system,with the number of Departments in Earth Sciences dropped from 29 to 8, accompanied by a progressivereduction in enrollment and graduates, from 1140 in 2002 to 586 in 2008 (2). Numbers that make you think,especially if contextualized to the Italian territory, widely characterized by the hydrogeological, seismic andvolcanological risk, in whose prevention the geologist plays a primary importance role. Sicily is one of theItalian regions in which we find three types of risk mentioned above and it is precisely in this context thatwe find the path of Alternation School-Work (ASL), “Sicily, a geological laboratory”, realized in within theMAGiS project (Open Museum for Young Scientists), in 2017, thanks to the contribution of the NaturalisticAssociation Geode ONLUS. The project took place at the “Museum of Mineralogy” of Palermo, Departmentof Earth and Sea Sciences of the University of Palermo, which houses one of the richest, over 10,000 samplesand ancient collections of rocks, minerals, instruments and other historical artifacts.The proposed path had two main purposes: 1) to enhance the wealth and historical, cultural, naturalistic andscientific heritage preserved not only at the Museum of Mineralogy, but also at the collections conserved inthe schools involved; 2) bring students closer to the world of university and work, particularly in the field ofEarth Sciences. 45 students, aged between 15 and 18, were involved in carrying out the activities, valuing theaptitudes and skills of each of them.With the aim of enhancing and increasing the usability of the aforementioned collections, to date belowpotential, young students have been provided with the tools and skills necessary for planning and conductingmuseum visits. The students were also trained for the organization and realization of the international event“European Night of Museums” at the Museum of Mineralogy.To this end, students were given lectures and experiential workshops on Geology and Mineralogy ingeneral, and on the geology of Sicily in particular. Theworkshops allowed the students to touch rocks andminerals, contextualizing them to the Sicilian territory, characterized by all the main types of rocks, as wellas by important successions of minerals, studied at international level, dating back to the period known as“Messinian” (7.246 - 5.332 Ma).
Lingua originaleEnglish
Numero di pagine1
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2018

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