About the PRC
The Precambrian Research Center (PRC) is a new research institute being established at the University of Minnesota-Duluth (UMD) as an integrated teaching and research center focused on geological mapping of Precambrian rocks. The PRC is a result of an identified and urgent, long-term need within the private and public sectors of the geological community, both locally and internationally, for geoscientists skilled in geological mapping and the study of Precambrian geology. Ancient shield areas that form the cores of the present-day continents are important scientifically in terms of early Earth history and crustal evolution, and they are extremely important to global society because they host a very large percentage of the world's ore deposits. For more a more complete description of the rationale behind the creation of the PRC, see the introductory remarks in the PRC business plan.
A primary mission of the PRC is to address the new demand for professional field geologists by providing training and support to upper-level undergraduate students, graduate students, and professional geologists in modern methods of geological mapping and map-making in glaciated Precambrian terrains. The concept for such a center evolved as a result of collaboration between three geosciences institutions within the University of Minnesota system - the Natural Resources Research Institute (NRRI), Minnesota Geological Survey (MGS), and UMD Department of Geological Sciences. Field and visualization training will be provided by a consortium of professional field geologists and University of Minnesota faculty (from NRRI, MGS, and UMD) in addition to geosciences faculty from other Midwest colleges and universities. The PRC will also provide a vehicle for synergistic collaboration between the public sector and private industry.
Our conceptual model for the PRC has received very strong support from the geological community in the US and Canada, including executives and geoscientists within the minerals industry, geological surveys, geological societies, and academia. The PRC will be guided by an advisory board of industry and academic geoscientists to assist the PRC in meeting its initial goals and to provide advice on how best to meet the future needs of the applied geosciences. Initial funding for the PRC is provided by the State of Minnesota, the University of Minnesota, and several private companies.
Goals and Objectives
The principal goals of the PRC are:
The PRC will accomplish these goals through five basic programs:
The primary beneficiaries of the PRC’s programs will be: