Graduate Student Spotlight: Caitlin Fisher

Hometown: Ottawa, ONCaitlin Fischer

Graduate Research Focus:

My current research involves using numerical models where rockmass structure is simulated explicitly to investigate peak and residual rockmass behaviour around underground excavations. Ultimately, I aim to use the developed numerical modelling techniques to investigate the influence of rockmass structure on rockbursting, and develop methods to assess rockbursting risk in tunnelling environments.

Why I chose to do graduate studies:

I chose to pursue graduate studies after my undergraduate degree to tackle research topics that had previously caught my interest that I believe will be impactful. I’m particularly inspired to be working towards effectively packaging academic research in a way that can be brought back practically to industry.

Caitlin FischerWhy Queen’s?:

I began my B.A.Sc. at Queen’s because of the strong reputation of Smith Engineering at Queen’s University and the sense of community. After moving into the Geological Engineering department, the amazing faculty, staff, and students made me want to continue to pursue my studies in this field.

What do you like to do in your spare time?: If it qualifies as “spare” time, I work part-time remotely for Golder’s Mine Stability West team in Vancouver. In my actual spare time, I love outdoor individual sports including hiking, watersports (windsurfing, waterskiing, wakesurfing, surfing), bouldering, and outdoor climbing. Unluckily for those who find themselves on my team, I also enjoy team intramural sports like ultimate frisbee, soccer, and innertube waterpolo.

What’s next for you?:

I plan to complete a Ph.D. at Queen’s University before moving back into industry full-time to work in a Geological Engineering consulting capacity. After living in

Vancouver previously for work, my dream is to head back there to continue hiking where there’s actually elevation.

Give us some inspiring words about studying Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering :

There are few fields that exhibit such variety in terms of project types, work location, and the unexpectedness associated with working with natural earth materials. In the Queen’s Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering department specifically, there is also such a range of personalities and life experiences to learn from and work with.

Caitlin Fischer