What is the Geological Society all about?

The Geological Society of Trinidad and Tobago is a professional and technical organization for geologists, other scientists, managers, other personnel engaged in the fields of exploration, drilling and production of hydrocarbons, and for earth scientists operating outside of the petroleum sector, e.g. those active in the academic sphere, volcanology, seismology, earthquake engineering, environmental geology geological engineering and the exploration and development of non-petroleum mineral resources.

Recognising the importance of petroleum and natural gas to the economy of Trinidad and Tobago, the Society was formed in 1976. The first general meeting was held in San Fernando in July of that year. An Executive Committee was elected in August of the same year. This committee comprised a president, 1st and 2nd vice presidents, secretary, assistant secretary and treasurer. There was also a corporate member and a non-petroleum representative on the Executive.

Apart from the Increasing Importance of petroleum to the economy, other factors contributed to the formation of this Society. Among these was the involvement of a growing number of local geologists in various specialised fields within this sector.

It was also felt that there is a need to provide career guidance and education in the geological sciences for secondary school and University students, with special emphasis on the needs of the petroleum industry in Trinidad and Tobago. Thus it was that the major aims of the Society became:-

(1) To increase the general level of geological knowledge among it’s members by the presentation of technical papers, the holding of technical fora and short courses, the arrangement of lectures by visiting or distinguished lecturers in conjunction with international geological societies, the publishing of a newsletter and/or other publications at regular Intervals, and all other activity relevant to the Society.

(2) To increase the awareness of the general public, of the importance and role of geologists and geology In this country, by the holding of public lectures and seminars, by the use of the communications media to disseminate information, and by the holding of expositions.

(3) To provide career guidance for students throughout the country. Nine (9) committees were formed to promote the activities of the Society whose responsibilities Included:

Admissions, local affiliations with other professional societies; affiliations with international geological sciences at various levels and the assembling of geological

collections for these purposes; holding of public seminars and lectures and consultation on environmental geology; and the publication of the Society’s technical papers.

The Society has four (4) categories of membership providing participation by professionals/ scientists in the geological and related sciences/professions:

(1) Active membership for Persons holding a degree from a recognised university and, who am engaged in the practice, teaching or application of the geosciences or who are actively interested in the geosciences.

(2) Student membership for “A” level high school, polytechnic and university under-graduate students.

(3) Associate membership for non-degreed geological assistants/ technicians.

(4) Honorary membership has been extended to distinguished geologists who have made important contributions to the profession and hence, to the economy of Trinidad and Tobago.

During it’s forty years of existence the Society has offered to It’s members hundreds of lectures by distinguished speakers, fifteen field-excursions including trips to Barbados, Jamaica and Venezuela, eight schools as part of Its continuing education programme and seven seminars.

Its publications have included the monthly Trinidad Petroleum and quarterly Geological Newsletter. It has been involved in career guidance in schools and held expositions in collaboration with other organizations. Its membership has grown from approximately 20 members in 1976 110 members today.

Among the many plans that its envisages for the future are the geological conferences which it intends to host tri-annually, the establishment of GSTT offices which would include research, library and museum facilities, increasing the public awareness of the role of geology in the life of Trinidad and Tobago -and a continuation of the realisation of the aims and objectives that underlie its formation.

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