A Clay Base
to A Muddy Start-]
While Larry Mayer has earned a
reputation as one of the country's leading experts in marine sediments,
his academic training was in clay mineralogy, a discipline that he
largely set aside when he began his career at the University of Maine in
1976. His interest in clays was rekindled when a group of students
approached him four years ago to request that he teach a course dealing
with the nature of clays. He agreed.
"This is an example of the synergy between teaching and research," says
Mayer. "Teaching the class made me get back up to speed in the clay
business and sparked my interest again, helping to steer me toward this
The infusion of geology into his ongoing oceanographic research has
opened new doors for Mayer, who believes the combination of teaching and
research is of key importance when it comes to keeping a research
program dynamic and exciting.
"I like getting back into this subject; it's really interesting. And
it's great to get into the field with a rock hammer again."