Jay Ague has been named a Fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America

October 7, 2016

Our very own illustrious Department Chair Jay Ague has been named a Fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America (http://www.minsocam.org/msa/Awards/Fellowship.html).   This is on top of his being named a Fellow of the Geological Society earlier this year.  

Quoting from the MSA website:

“The Mineralogical Society of America (MSA) was founded in 1919 for the advancement of mineralogy, crystallography, geochemistry, petrology,  and promotion of their uses in other sciences, industry, and the arts. It encourages fundamental research about natural materials; supports the teaching of mineralogical concepts and procedures; and attempts to raise the scientific literacy of society with respect to issues involving mineralogy in the widest sense. 

The Society encourages the preservation of mineral collections, displays, mineral localities, type minerals and scientific data. MSA represents the United States internationally with regard to the science of mineralogy.”

The history of mineralogy is also closely tied to the history of science at Yale in general and the legacy of Benjamin Silliman.  To quote an essay on the “future of mineralogy” from the nascent 

MSA in 1921 by Edward Kraus  (http://www.minsocam.org/msa/collectors_corner/arc/futmineral.htm)

“An event of far reaching importance upon the development of our science was the appointment in 1802 of Benjamin Silliman as professor of chemistry,  mineralogy, and so forth, in Yale University. This appears to have been the first college appointment for mineralogy in America. Silliman began his  lectures at Yale in the fall of 1804, and two years later wrote a sketch of the Mineralogy of New Haven, which was published in 1810 in the  Transactions of the Connecticut Academy of Sciences. In those days mineralogy and geology had, not been sharply differentiated, and mineralogy was commonly used as the more comprehensive term. Accordingly, this contribution by Silliman is commonly recognized as the first attempt at a geological description of an American region.”

Fellowship in the MSA is reserved for “members who have contributed significantly to the advancement of mineralogy, crystallography, geochemistry, petrology, or allied sciences and whose scientific contribution utilized mineralogical studies or data”.  The number of fellows elected each year cannot exceed 0.5% of MSA membership.