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Welcome to the Geological Society of Minnesota

The Geological Society of Minnesota is a public-spirited, nonprofit educational organization that has been in operation since 1938. Our ongoing mission has been to promote public interest and supply educational support in the geological sciences. We do this by sponsoring free lectures and labs at the University of Minnesota, conducting statewide and regional field trips, holding classroom presentations for schools, maintaining a media library, publishing relevant information for public distribution, and maintaining and expanding upon a series of geological markers located throughout the state.

GSM's exciting, illustrated Seminars are presented by leading professionals in their fields of Geology or Earth Science. These engaging talks are free and open to the public, and are especially valuable for enthusiastic learners from secondary school students to adults. A question and answer opportunity is always included. Where else can you enjoy an intriguing exchange with a leading scientist or educator? Our novice-friendly labs demonstrate at a comfortable pace the ideas and principles of geology and earth science. They allow an involved, hands-on learning experience for beginners, or a helpful refresher for the seasoned enthusiast. These instructive sessions are also free and open to the public. Where else can you actively practice science, under expert guidance, for free?


Next GSM lecture:  starting at 7:00 PM on 01/26/15

GSM Lecture: 

Monday, January 26, 2015, 7:00 PM

NOTE: the start time of 7:00 PM

LOCATION: University of MN, Kenneth Keller Hall, 200 Union St SE, Room 3-210, Keller Hall. MAP

Sustainability & Mineral Stewardship


Mike Hansberry, Program Manager, 3M


John Beck, Geologist Specialist, 3M 


Mike Hansberry:
To make progress possible, 3M is inventing tomorrow by providing practical solutions to address environmental and societal challenges for our customers and ourselves.  Sustainability is part of 3M's DNA and we have been employing sustainability for more than 40 years.  In addition, 3M has long recognized that dialogue and collaboration are crucial to innovation and every 3Mer has an opportunity and responsibility to drive sustainability.  The result - clever solutions to solve today and tomorrow's challenges.  The opening presentation will include an overview of sustainability at 3M.

John Beck:

The Industrial Mineral Products Division (IMPD) of 3M has been producing ceramic coated roofing granules for asphalt shingles for 83 years.  To support the roofing granule operations the division currently has four operating quarries in the United States and manages over 10,000 acres of land holdings.  Business resources within 3M that support development of new properties and manufacturing facilities and support existing locations include: environmental, geology, laboratory, engineering, manufacturing / mining operations, and transportation / supply chain.  This presentation will discuss the history of 3M IMPD, geology of the quarries, and activities that are in place, and planned, to support the sustainable operation of the IMPD facilities.




Michael (Mike) Hansberry    Program Manager

Education: BA Physiology, Minor Mathematics, University of Minnesota - Twin Cities 1983


Professional Profile:  Mike is a recognized new business development leader in 3M.  He possesses broad business development, commercialization, sales, and technical credentials.  His extensive customer engagement experience and demonstrated success in discovering customer needs, connecting 3M technologies, and commercializing a solution for commercial applications make him a good fit for the Customer Inspired Innovation Program Office in 3M.

Affiliations: Business, Professional & Civic Organizations

• University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Business - Guest Lecturer - 5 year continuing commitment

John W. Beck 
Geologist Specialist, 3M Industrial Mineral Products Division 
Have worked as a geologist for 3M for the past 21 years, chiefly with the Industrial Mineral Products Division.  Prior to joining 3M I worked with the consulting firm Ernest K. Lehmann and Associates as an economic geologist based in Minneapolis, MN. 

BS Geology, University of Minnesota, Duluth 
MS Geology, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 
MBA, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN 

Professional Geologist, State of Minnesota 
Professional Geologist, State of Wisconsin 
Certified Professional Geologist, American Institute of Professional Geologists



Keep date open for the Spring Banquet & Silent Auction on May 4th, 2015; 5 - 8:30PM. Click here details 

Seminars and Labs

The schedule of seminars and labs for 2014-2015 in now available click here . Note that the seminars start a a new time this year, 7:00 PM 

Field Trips

Next field trip: 

During the months of May through October, GSM conducts a series of professionally-guided, statewide and regional field trips. These are one to three day excursions made to points of geologic interest not usually experienced by the casual traveler. They afford a very memorable and satisfying learning experience as there are always plenty of hands-on and question-answering opportunities. A comaraderie with enthusiastic learners and people curious about their natural environment is always a reward in itself. There is a small charge for any shared expense, and a liability waiver must be signed for each participant.


Speakers for metro area elementary schools are available through the Public Service Committee to help enrich the education of young learners, particularly the 2nd to 4th grade levels.


Membership in the society is open to anyone with an interest in geology. The benefits of membership include

  • Extensive Media Library - GSM maintains a collection of more than 125 geological videos and a growing number of interactive, multimedia CD-ROMs for both windows and Macintosh computers. These are available to the members at lectures or through the mail for a nominal rental fee.
  • GSM Newsletter - A quarterly publication containing announcements of upcoming activities, interesting and informative articles on the earth sciences, GSM project and activity reports, and general club news and notices.
  • GSM Directory - An annual book that is a handy information resource, and makes it easy to access your organization.
  • Rocky Roots ... Three Geology Walking Tours of Downtown St. Paul - A free copy of this popular guidebook.
  • The opportunity to meet others of diverse backgrounds who share an enthusiasm for learning and a curiosity for the natural world around them.
  • The rewarding feeling of supporting a public-spirited, nonprofit organization dedicated to public education.
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