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Derek G. Turner

I was born and raised on Vancouver Island and became interested in understanding processes that have shaped the Earth’s surface after spending my youth outside fascinated by the end product. After a brief stint as an engineer at the University of British Columbia, I was captivated by Earth Science at the University of Victoria, where I completed a B.Sc. At the end of this degree, I chose my worst subject and took a year of courses to strengthen it, resulting in a minor in Mathematics.

Following some work with the B.C. government mapping aggregate resource in northern B.C. and investigating Tertiary-aged paleo-channels using drilling records, I enrolled as a M.Sc. student at Simon Fraser University in 2006. My interest in doing applied research led me to investigate the glacial geology of Howard’s Pass, in the Selwyn Mountains of eastern Yukon. This project involved reconstructing the ice-flow history, creating a terrain inventory map and conducting a till and Mobile Metal Ion geochemistry survey in the area.

After completing this degree, I entered the Ph.D. program at SFU. This project involves resolving the pre-MIS 2 stratigraphy of western Yukon and reconstructing the paleo-environments during non-glacial intervals over the past 200 000 years. To achieve this, stratigraphic exposures along the White River were investigated and will be compared to exposures along Silver Creek, near Kluane Lake. These sections contain paleosols, plant and insect macrofossils, large mammal fossils and multiple tephra beds. These tephra beds can be dated and will provide a well-constrained chronology for the northern Cordilleran Ice Sheet during the Mid to Late Pleistocene. The macrofossils offer the potential to study how the environment adjusted to climate change over this period.

MSc Simon Fraser University
BSc (Hons) University of Victoria

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