Geological sciences alumna offers advice to ASU first-years

By

Karin Valentine

Editor's note: This profile is part of a series on outstanding School of Earth and Space Exploration alumni.

Cassie Collins earned her bachelor’s degree in May 2018 in Earth and Space Exploration with an emphasis in geological sciences. “My first job out of college was as a mud logger in Midland, Texas,” said Collins. “That’s the person who collects mud and tells the geologist what kind of rocks they are hitting.” And while she liked the work, she found Midland wasn’t where she wanted to live. 

Originally from Colorado, Collins is now a project coordinator for Ascent Geomatics Solutions, a geospatial data company based in Denver. When asked what she likes best about her current job, Collins says she gets to have a hand in a lot of different things, from budgeting and projects to construction and field survey work. 

Although Collins was born in Colorado, she grew up in Arizona, so Arizona State University was a natural choice for her studies.

“I fell in love with the school and found everyone to be so accessible,” she said. “Whenever I had a question about anything, or got on different projects, professors were ready and willing to help.”

Collins didn’t have a lot of time for extracurricular activities as an undergraduate since she also worked part time, but she did join every field trip she could. She says the trip to the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show with geology Professor Tom Sharp as part of his mineralogy class was one of her favorite trips.

When asked what advice Collins has for first-year School of Earth and Space Exploration students, she suggests not letting assignments pile up early on.

“If you have a research project that is due at the end of the semester, do not wait to start it,” she said. “Put forth the effort at the beginning.”

She also suggests becoming an undergraduate researcher.

“Network like crazy, knock on doors, ask faculty what it will take to become an undergraduate researcher,” said Collins. “Get your name out there and your face known and things will happen.”

When asked about her overall experience at ASU and the School of Earth and Space Exploration, Collins said she loved it and felt her education prepared her for what the real world is after. She also warns students, “If you think homework is over after you graduate, you are mistaken.”