Curriculum Vitae – Benjamin D. Brooks

Last Updated: October 2020
(Undergoing Revision)

Key Skills | Postgraduate Education | Undergraduate Education | Work Experience | Voluntary Work | Interests | References and Contact

Key Skills (back to top)

– Versed in team and independent working
– Wide ranging IT proficiency
– Proven organisational skills
– Calm under pressure
– Adaptable
– Experienced Communicator
– Competent in CSS and HTML 4/5
– Trained Peer Mentor

Mapping & field geology experience: I have undertaken several mapping-training field courses during the course of my degree (Dorset, Yorkshire, Tenby, and Anglesey). My Third Year Independent Geological Mapping Project involved a small 10km2 area of the English Lake District, interpreting the geology and producing an interpretative geological map and an 8,000 word report on the area. This work was awarded a mark of 66%

Research experience: In my final year at Southampton I completed an Independent Research Project investigating macro-ecological changes in offshore shelf sea environments over the Jurassic period. The project involved independent meta-analysis of existing literature, gaining access to museum collections and using museum specimen data, scaling methods and non-parametric statistics in the final research project report.

Computing experience: Competent in the use of Windows 95 – Windows 10, Office 97 – 2019, OpenOffice, EndNote X/, Image editing software (Fireworks MX, CorelDRAW X3-X4), have a working knowledge of video editing software (COREL VideoStudio Pro X3) and web design (HTML/CSS coding, Drupal, WordPress and Dreamweaver software), and have also used specialist applications such as ERDAS Imagine (Remote Sensing), ArcGIS (GIS Software), GEOrient and Stereo32 (stereonet software), Finally I am conversant with ModesXML (Museum database management software)

Presentation skills: I am competent in writing a variety of styles of report and in producing PowerPoint presentations, websites and printed media such as academic posters, leaflets and hand-outs. Over the course of my degree I have given several presentations on geological topics to small groups, produced written reports on the Geology of Ingleton (Yorkshire) & Coniston (Cumbria) and other reports as part of individual study units in micropalaeontology and resource geology. I’ve also given speeches and spoken in front of the university student council, student union A.G.M. and in university society meetings.

Teamwork experience: Whilst at university I have worked in teams in both academic and non-academic capacities. This included work on group projects in my second, third and fourth years of study and as part of the student union representation team where I took a leading role in lobbying for increased representation at satellite campuses. Before university I was also a member of my school cadet unit’s NCO team, responsible for the activities, welfare and teaching of the schools cadet unit members, whose ages ranged from 13 – 18.

Postgraduate Education (back to top)

Cadet Vocational Qualification Organisation (2020)
BTEC Level 3 Award in Education and Training – Ongoing, Expected Pass

Met Office College, Exeter (2015 – 2018)
BIP-M Compliant Initial Forecasting course (2015)
RQF Level 5 Diploma in Meteorological Forecasting (2018)

School of Museum Studies, University of Leicester (2013 – 2015)
Distance Learning MA, Museum Studies: Graduated with Merit.
Subject of Masters Dissertation:

“How does the commercial nature of the UK Fossil Trade affect the ability of natural history museums to maintain and enhance their collections?”

University and Earlier (back to top)

School of Ocean and Earth Science, University of Southampton (2007 – 2011)
Integrated Master of Science, Geology (MSci): Upper Second Class Honours
Subject of Masters Dissertation:

“Vertebrate Palaeoecology in offshore shelf sea environments through time; and investigation of the Blue Lias and Oxford Clay.”

Courses examined included:

Palaeobiology – 67%
Structural Geology – 76%
Sedimentary Systems – 66%
Remote Sensing & GIS – 70%
Evolving Earth – 71%
Volcanic and Mantle Processes – 65%
Global Tectonics – 64%
Global Climate Cycles – 73%

Work Experience (back to top)

Nov. 2014 – Present: UK Met Office, Exeter, Devon.
Operational Meteorologist: After an initial training period in the Met Office College lasting until July 2016,  this role involves assessing the quality of observational weather data, interpreting weather models with respect to those observations, information from the Met Office Guidance Unit and relevant meteorological theory; then producing forecast products for customers. This role also involved interpreting forecasts for customers in UK Civil Aviation and associated industries.

Jul. 2011 – Sept. 2014: Lyme Regis Museum, Lyme Regis, Dorset.
Independent Services Provider: This role involved assisting the Museum’s Geologist and Education Officers in taking paying members of the public along the coast between Lyme Regis and Charmouth. This entailed describing and showing them the preservation styles and the ecology represented in the rocks. I was also able to help the visitors to identify and understand the fossils that they collected on the fossil walks. This role also involved working on family activity days and working behind the scenes to set up temporary exhibitions and update the museum’s geological modes database.

Jan. 2012 – Mar. 2012: Craven Museum, Skipton, Yorkshire.
Geology Intern: This three month fixed term role involved data basing and cataloguing the Geology collections currently held by Craven Museum. This included identification and photography of specimens, collating the data into the museum’s ModesXML database and organising the collection within the museum’s available storage.

Nov. 2008 – July 2011: UK Student Recruitment and Outreach Office, University of Southampton.
Student Ambassador/Student Mentor: I was involved in showing prospective students around the university, promoting higher education to secondary school students. This role also allowed me to teach sustainable energy in an extracurricular scheme in local schools. The variety of this role required me to adapt my presentation style to different age groups, field questions on a range of topics and think on-the-spot.

May 2010: The Fossil Workshop, Lyme Regis, Dorset.
Fossil Festival Assistant: I worked at the Lyme Regis Fossil Festival 2010 interacting with customers, handling money, undertaking stock control and explaining the fossilisation process. I also assisted in some low-tech manual fossil preparation.

Nov. 2009 – July. 2010: School of Ocean and Earth Sciences, University of Southampton.
Undergraduate Mentor: My role involved assisting first year students in the basics of geological interpretation. The ability to think in 3D, work in a team and communicate ideas and analogies to students has been essential, as was the ability to motivate students to think in ways different to those to which they were accustomed.

Voluntary Work (back to top)

Jan. 2017 – Present: Royal Air Force Air Cadets.
Adult Volunteer: …

Aug. 2010/Sept. 2011: Palaeontology Department, Natural History Museum, London.
Curatorial Volunteer: I spent three weeks assisting the Curator of Echinoderms, Dr. Tim Ewin maintaining the echinoid collection, including re-labelling and re-boxing specimens and updating the records of where specimens had been cited or figured in scientific literature. In 2011, I was involved in cataloguing a private collection that had been recently donated to the museum, this included producing a MS Access database and corresponding paper catalogue.

Oct. 2007 – July 2011: Southampton University Student’s Union.
Student Representative/School President/Faculty Officer: I was involved with working with students, the Students’ Union and university staff to improve the education system at the university and ensure the student voice was heard. Good writing and oratorical skills were necessary in this role. In 2010 I was awarded the Excellence in Volunteering Award (EVA) for Innovation in Student Representation for my work as School of Ocean and Earth Sciences President. I was awarded a second EVA in 2011 for my four years of committed service as a student representative.

Sept. 2006– Sept 2008: 624 Volunteer Gliding Squadron, Chivenor, Devon.
Flight Staff Cadet/Civilian Gliding Instructor: For two years I worked at 624 VGS on weekends and during school holiday periods helping to teach motor gliding to members of the Air Training Corps and Combined Cadet Force (RAF). This involved cleaning and maintaining the squadron’s three aircraft, performing checks on fire equipment and vehicles, undertaking pastoral care for resident cadets overnight, maintaining flying documentation and assisting senior staff in general squadron operations.

Interests and Activities (back to top)

I enjoy a variety of outdoor activities including hiking, cycling, skiing and rock climbing and help supervise amateur rockclimbers on an unofficial level. I enjoy the challenges posed in expedition planning and have taken part in several expeditions in the UK, including the Brecon Beacons, Dartmoor and the English Lake District. Travelling has long been a passion of mine and I have been lucky enough to experience many foreign countries and cultures including Norway, Fiji and New Zealand and additionally have represented the UK on the International Air Cadet Exchange to Ghana in 2007. I am also a blogger and science advocate.

References and Contact (back to top)

In the insterests of privacy, I do not publish the details of my referees here. They are, however, available on request to prospective employers.

To contact me for enquiries, or to request reference information, you can use this form.

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