While I was a graduate student at UC Santa Cruz, I volunteered as a guest geologist at the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural Histor with my colleague, labmate, and friend, Gavin Piccione. As the Geology Gents, we identified rocks and shared out knowledge of Earth processes and history with the Santa Cruz community at museum events and monthly “Rockin’ Pop-ups”. In the spring of 2020, when shelter-in-place orders were declared in Santa Cruz, we transitioned to a virtual format, regularly broadcasting geoscience content through the museum.
Over the course of the 4-year program, we had a blast talking about rocks and enjoyed many wonderful conversations with community members. Shortly after transitioning into my post-doc we had our final virtual Rockin’ Pop-up, bringing the program to its conclusion. Now, we have been looking back and hope to share some of the things we learned from this experience, including the accidental experiment of reinventing an in-person program as a virtual one. We presented our first insights at Earth Educators’ Rendezvous 2022. If you’re interested, check out the poster here!