Rhian Meara

Favourite Thing: I love all things geology-related but have always particularly loved volcanoes and natural hazards!



PhD – University of Edinburgh; MGeol undergraduate degree – University of Leicester.


PhD and MGeol

Country I live in:


Work History:

Lecturer in Geology and Physical Geography at Swansea University (2014 – present); University Teacher in Earth Sciences at the University of Glasgow (2012 – 2014); Post Doctoral Research Assistant at Swansea University (2011 – 2012).

Current Job:

Lecturer in Geology and Physical Geography at Swansea University.


Swansea University

Me and my work

Teaching, teaching, teaching, and sometimes a bit of research!

I teach geology and physical geography at the University of Swansea in Wales. My research has focused onto the geochemistry of volcanic eruptions in Iceland and I also research the best ways to teaching students about geology. At the moment I am developing new words in British Sign Language to teach deaf children about my subject.

My Typical Day

Teaching, field work, lab work and outreach.

Every day is different for me! Most days I teach in the University – I teach geology and physical geography at Swansea University. During the summer I often go away for field work, most recently I have been to Iceland to collect volcanic ash with my colleagues from the University of Cambridge. Sometimes I will spend time talking with school pupils about my subject and answering their questions either through “I’m a Geoscientist”, or in other local events – these are my favorite days! And on other days I might work in the lab analyzing samples and collecting new data.

What I'd do with the money

If you choose me to win, I would like to use the money to develop a series of children’s books about geology!

My Interview

How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Nerdy, enthusiastic and friendly.

Who is your favourite singer or band?

I can’t choose! I like everything from cheesy pop music to heavy metal!

What's your favourite food?

Pizza and cookies!

What is the most fun thing you've done?

The most fun thing I’ve ever done is become an Auntie to two amazing little girls! We have so much fun when we are together and they are my favorite people in the whole world!

What did you want to be after you left school?

I wanted to be a volcanologist working in Iceland!

Were you ever in trouble in at school?

sometimes, as I never wanted to wear my school uniform properly.

What was your favourite subject at school?

I loved Geography and Chemistry!

What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?

The best thing I have done as a scientist is working on the 2010 eruption of Eyjafjallajokull! I was on the mountain while it was erupting and trying to collect samples for analysis!

What or who inspired you to become a scientist?

I visited Iceland when I was 12 and thought it was the most amazing place I’d ever been! I went on a trip to see a volcano which had erupted in the 1970’s and the lava was still so warm that we cooked a jacket potato in a pile of rocks to eat after our trip!

If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?

good question! I would probably be a professional crafter… I love making things like sewing, knitting, mosaic.

If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!

1. To be happy. 2. To be a part of a major scientific breakthrough. 3. To win “I’m a Geoscientist”!

Tell us a joke.

What do you get if you cross some ducks with Chrismas?? ……… Christmas Quackers!! :)

My favourite place on earth is?

Snowdonia in Wales.

Other stuff

Work photos:

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