Laura Bilenker

Postdoctoral Fellow
University of British Columbia

As a MAGNET trainee from 2016-2018, I was a postdoctoral fellow under the supervision of Drs. Dominique Weis and James Scoates at the University of British Columbia in the Pacific Centre for Isotopic and Geochemical Research. My research took me from the seafloor to large-scale magma chambers as I used geochemistry to understand element mobility and isotope fractionation (Fe, Pb, Sr, Nd, Hf) within the crust. This work complemented well my PhD research (U. Michigan, 2015) on stable Fe isotope fractionation in magmatic and ore-forming systems, my Master’s work (U. California, Riverside, 2011) constraining the kinetics of sulfide dissolution in seawater in the context of seafloor mining, and my undergraduate Senior Thesis (U. Maryland, 2008) doing experimental petrology in Economic Geology.

The multi-disciplinary and nation-wide framework of MAGNET provided numerous and sometimes unexpected opportunities in the field, laboratory, “classroom” (online seminars/courses), and professional development. In particular, the MAGNET internship was extremely rewarding. My experience with Nu Instruments, Ltd. (Wrexham, Wales), deepened my understanding of the instrumentation and analytical methods behind obtaining isotopic data, and significantly broadened my perspective from “the other side” of the analyses we regularly perform.

My participation in MAGNET was an invaluable stepping-stone and I look forward to continued collaboration within the network.