On October 17th the Mentorship Program of the Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists (CSEG), held a kickoff event at the Unicorn Pub in Calgary. This event was made possible by the many sponsors, and we would like to thank SAE Exploration, Arc Resources, Earth Signal Processing, Optiseis, Qeye, RPS, Synterra and Absolute Imaging. We would also like to thank the organizing committee and the attendees for making this a worthwhile get together! This year’s Mentorship Committee consists of Jeff Calvert, David Nordin, Stephen Kotkas, Cole Narfason, Chris Bird, Ashlee Fudge, Jennifer Bors, Sarah Grant, Mike Finn and Alessandro Carducci.

The mission of the CSEG is to promote the science of geophysics as it applies to exploration, and fellowship and co-operation among those interested in geophysical prospecting. One of the greatest benefits of becoming involved in the CSEG is the opportunity to build community. The mentorship committee encourages you to join, as a mentor, the many passionate CSEG volunteers. This is an amazing opportunity for you to shape the future of the next generation of geoscientists.

There are many geophysical students and young professionals who need a mentor. Mentorship plays a crucial role for several reasons:

Skill Development: A mentor can provide guidance on technical skills, experimental design, data analysis, and other essential research techniques.

Navigating work Culture: Geoscience can be a complex field with its own set of norms, ethics, and unwritten rules. A mentor helps a mentee navigate this culture, ensuring they understand how to conduct research responsibly and ethically.

Problem Solving and Critical Thinking: A mentor challenges a student to think critically, ask the right questions, and approach problems in a systematic way.

Networking Opportunities: A mentor often has an established network within the CSEG community. They can introduce a student to other researchers, provide opportunities for collaboration, and facilitate attending conferences or workshops.

Motivation and Support: Learning can be challenging and frustrating at times. A mentor provides emotional support, encouragement, and motivation.

Feedback and Evaluation: A mentor offers constructive feedback to a mentee, helping improve research methodology, writing skills, and presentation abilities.

Career Guidance: Mentors can offer valuable insights into potential career paths, both in academia and industry. They can help mentees identify their strengths and interests and guide them towards opportunities that align with their goals.

Avoiding Common Pitfalls: Experienced mentors can share their own experiences, including mistakes they’ve made. This helps mentees avoid common pitfalls and learn from the mentor’s own journey.

Choosing to volunteer as a mentor is a great way to reintroduce yourself to industry professionals you haven’t seen for a few years or to network with new potential colleagues and clients. Countless individuals have highlighted the benefits of getting to know industry professionals for collaboration, mentorship, employment, and continual learning. Mentorship is one of the committees that emulates community. Many of the volunteers have had amazing experiences and we are sure that you will have one too.

In 2022-2023 volunteer mentors were nominated for some great work including Nanna Eliuk, Sarah Grant, John Cockbill, Mike Finn, Sobhi Alhashwa, Mandy Williams, Ryan Mardani, Michelle Korodimas, Earl Tobin, Darren Hinks, and Kennedy Nwafor. We encourage you to join them, put your hand up and volunteer. See where you can become involved and join those who are giving their time, energy, and expertise; give them your vote of confidence with some of your time. We have incredible geoscience communities, and we want them to continue to grow and thrive. If you don’t have the time to volunteer right now, then sign up for a course, a talk, or a networking event. There are so many ways to be part of the CSEG team.

Mentorship is a cornerstone of success in geoscience. It fosters a supportive and nurturing environment for students, helping them develop the skills, knowledge, and mindset necessary for a successful career in scientific work. Get involved today!

About the Authors

Jeff Calvert is a Geoscientist at Criterium Energy. He graduated from the University of Calgary in 2014 and has been an active CSEG volunteer since then, serving on committees such as Student Outreach and Mentorship. Currently he serves as the Mentorship Chair for 2023-2024.

Stephen Kotkas is a geophysical data broker at Sigma Explorations Inc. He was one of the founders of the CSEG Foundation Mentorship Program in 2009 and has been on the committee since.