Friday, June 5, 2009

In hard economic times

there are so many decisions to be made, and I know it's tough, and I can either agree, or not (GM!) But when it gets to the local level, and I can actually potentially make a difference, this is where I feel the urge to act.

The University of Wyoming Geological Museum has been slated for closure under state budget cuts. I am going to copy my letter to the editors of various newspapers around the state (as well as President Buchanan and Governor Dave Freudenthal), and I encourage all of you out there who understand the importance of such a unique resource to the education of people of all ages and the contribution to the local economy to voice your disapproval of this decision.
Please consider a letter to the editors of the Laramie Boomerang, Casper Star Tribune and Cheyenne Eagle Tribune, as well as to UWYo President Tom Buchanan and Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal. All these people can be reached easily via the web. THANKS!

June 5, 2009
Dear President Buchanan, Governor Freudenthal , Editor and Wyoming public:
Making budget cuts in tough economic times is a difficult decision to make. While I respect the energy and deliberation spent in making this decision , I am compelled to write that closing the UWYo Geological Museum is a mistake.

Having worked at the museum for two years in the prep lab, I have seen the impact the institution has on visitors from Laramie, the State, and as far away as Chicago, Texas, even Boston. In summer, parents plan vacations around bringing their children to see Big Al. They go to Yellowstone, Cody, Thermopolis and other Wyoming venues along the way. School groups from all over the state attend tours of the museum. Instructors on campus and at LCCC bring classes for instructional and art exercises. Local families visit regularly with their kids. Grandparents bring their grandchildren. Highway travelers stop for an interesting break. The Geological Museum serves as an important educational tool and brings money to the local economy.

Geological resources available in our area are unique and are on display for the public at large through the Museum. It strikes me that closing such an important institution in our region, which employs one full-time director (who has been on board for decades) and one part-time (this used to be a full-time position) office associate could not amount to much in terms of the entire budget, but would be a significant loss to the Laramie community and to those who travel hundreds and sometimes thousands of miles to experience this little gem.

Leaders, please reconsider your choice. It was not a good one.
Thank you.
Lisa Cox
University of Wyoming graduate student, resident and contributor to community

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello, I am a reporter with the Wyoming Tribune Eagle looking to do a story on the museum's closing. Lisa, I would like to talk to you or anyone else interested in keeping the museum open. My name is Bill McCarthy and my e-mail address is My phone number is 307.633.3122.