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Tom Dombrowski, senior research scientist at Specialty Minerals in Easton, will discuss the petroleum and industrial minerals industries noon today in Van Wickle Hall room 108.

The talk is sponsored by the geology and environmental geosciences department. Lunch will be provided for free to students and for $3 to faculty and staff.

“I remember when I was a junior and senior, I was real interested in where I could find work, so I am going to share the twists and turns that my geologic career took, and I will point out the job prospects in each area,” Dombrowski says.

His talk also will cover the important role occupied by industrial minerals.

“When many young geologists think of the mining industry, they think of gold, silver, copper, etc.,” he says. “Metallic mining is a strong segment of the mining industry and it accounts for about $10 billion in sales of products, but it is dwarfed by industrial minerals, which account for about $32 billion in sales. The industrial minerals are important because they really allow for the high standard of living that we enjoy in the western world. If you don’t have a strong industrial minerals segment of your economy, you don’t have the roads, buildings, food, etc. that we all take for granted.”

Dombrowski will finish his talk by giving details on clay minerals and how they are part of products used every day.

He received a bachelor’s degree in geology from the University of Georgia and a master’s and Ph.D. in geology from Indiana University. He worked in the petroleum industry on a seismic crew looking for oil after earning his undergraduate degree and then worked with Chevron Oil for five years between his master’s and Ph.D.

After his final degree, Dombrowski began working in the industrial minerals industry through a position with Georgia Kaolin Company. After that company was purchased and broken up, he joined Engelhard Corp.

“For my mid-life crisis I joined a specialty paper mill that used all types of industrial minerals in paper,” he says. “For the last five years I have been with Specialty Minerals in Easton, where I work with calcium carbonate and talc.”

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