RMS Students had first-hand experience with drilling rig

Riverton Middle School students attended a field trip to the former site of the Riverton Municipal Landfill to observe an engineering company drill core samples of the ground. Photo by Nanna Frazier, RMS

Riverton, Wyo. – Students from Riverton Middle School took a field trip to the former site of the Riverton Municipal Landfill, located SE of Smith Road and Park, as part of a year-long investigation into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) learning.

Instructor Nanna Frazier reported ‘This has been another phase in our collaboration with the City of Riverton, Inberg-Miller Engineers, and University of Wyoming Professor Rachel Mim Watson in our journey through problem-based learning.” 

Frazier said the field trip was planned “to observe the drilling sampling on the boundaries of the old landfill today.  We took three seperate groups of 7th grade STEM students throughout the day and each group was on site for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour.  It was an amazing experience for the students and teachers.”

 The field trip gave the students first-hand knowledge of how a drilling rig operates. “Prior to this, students had only experienced rigs through research, but now they have seen a rig crew set up, drill into the Earth for samples, and dismantle the rig to move to another location.  On top of that, the engineers from Inberg-Miller Engineering explained what they were doing along the way, showed samples they collected, and answered countless questions from our students.”

Steven Moldt from Inberg-Miller Engineers facilitated this experience for us, Frazier wrote in an email.  “They were fantastic teachers and this was a wonderful real-world learning experience for our students.”

Frazier also indicated that “Rachel Mim Watson and her Microbiology Capstone students from the University of Wyoming joined us, as they were collecting samples for their research projects.”