By: Becky Anderson, OSU Student Chapter President
The Ohio State University chapter of AIPG took 8 students to the Cleveland Museum of Natural History on Saturday, March 24th, 2018.
We got up bright and early on a Saturday to have a fun and educational day at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. The museum was very impressive! It holds over 5 million research specimens and has excellent exhibits.
Once we arrived at the museum we had our private tour with Dr. Hannibal, the curator of invertebrate paleontology. Dr. Hannibal is an authority on myriapods (a new genus of fossil millipedes, Hannibaliulus wilsonae
is named after him!) and he also specializes in cultural geology. Dr. Hannibal’s knowledge about the fossil specimens was incredibly impressive and inspiring. We were very lucky to have such a dedicated and passionate tour guide.
First, Dr. Hannibal quickly walked through each exhibit with us and gave us a brief overview about the content in each. He pointed out interesting facts and visuals which we would later go back to and spend more time exploring.
After our walk-through, we got to go into the back rooms where the scientists work. We saw the rooms where the exhibits are planned as well as the labs where fossil samples are prepared and cleaned. Dr. Hannibal showed us some fossils that scientists had been trying to free from matrix for years! We had the opportunity to see a massive Dunkleosteus terrelli fossil up close! Dr. Hannibal also took us into his office and showed us some of his favorite fossils, including a wonderfully preserved Charophytes. Dr. Hannibal’s enthusiasm made the tour a lot of fun. I think it’s safe to say we all learned so much. We are very thankful that Dr. Hannibal gave us such a detailed and educational tour.
After our private tour, we got to explore all of the exhibits. The museum had a new Pterosaur exhibit which had a lot of fun interactive activities. Also, the mineral/rock exhibit was very informative and the specimens were breathtaking. And just like that, 5 hours had flown by. The Cleveland Museum of Natural History has so much to offer and we cannot wait to go back again.
We want to thank the Ohio Section of AIPG for making this trip possible by providing funding. We are extremely grateful for your support. College can be extremely stressful, but it is days like these that make it all worth it. OSU AIPG members had the chance to have fun, make friendships, and learn about topics that interest them.