UMSL Geologist to Hold Class Among Volcanoes
A fascination with volcanoes led Michael Fix, associate teaching professor of physics at UMSL, to a career in geology.
Though he wouldn’t call himself a volcanologist, Michael Fix, a geologist at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, has been fascinated by volcanoes for decades. As a teenager he constructed a papier-mâché model of the Indonesian volcano Krakatoa atop his parent’s Hibachi, stuffed it full of fireworks and watched the eruption.
Fix calls volcanic eruptions an “inherently interesting phenomena. What can I say? We like things that explode.”
It was Fix’s fascination with volcanoes that in part lead him to take geology classes at St. Louis Community College–Florissant Valley after high school. There he was taken under the wing of Professor Bruce Stinchcomb who became a mentor and encouraged Fix to take seriously the natural sciences. Bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Washington University in St. Louis’s School of Earth and Planetary Sciences followed for Fix, and he’s taught geology at UMSL for the past 38 years.
Throughout it all Fix never lost his interest in volcanoes.
It was to Fix’s delight then when UMSL’s School of Professional and Continuing Studies asked him to teach a brand new travel study course this summer. The weeklong course will offer students (and their instructor) an exciting opportunity to study volcanoes on one of the world’s most active volcanic islands in Hawaii.