Department of Geosciences

School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

News & Events

Announcing the Emile Pessagno Graduate Student Endowment Fund

Dr. Emile A. Pessagno, Jr., Professor Emeritus, retired after 39 years in the Geosciences Department at The University of Texas at Dallas. A total of 40 students have received advanced degrees under Dr. Pessagno’s direction (15 M.S. and 25 Ph.D.).

During his tenure at The University of Texas at Dallas Dr. Pessagno became well-known nationally and internationally for his investigations of Mesozoic microfossils (Radiolaria and planktonic Foraminifera) and Mesozoic stratigraphy. He received 18 grants from the U.S. National Science Foundation and 10 from industry to support his research as well as that of his students. Dr. Pessagno’s investigations involved research in Arkansas, Texas, California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, Alaska, Mexico, Panama, Costa Rica, Brazil, Argentina, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, La Désirade (Lesser Antilles), Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, Oman, Iran, Sarawak, the Sula Islands (Indonesia), and New Zealand. Moreover, in 1968 he was a member of the scientific party of Deep Sea Drilling Project Leg 1 (Orange, Texas to New York, New York). During DSDP Leg 1 the pioneering deep sea drilling ship, Glomar Challenger, struck oil at Challenger Knoll at a water depth of 10,000 feet in the Gulf of Mexico. Dr. Pessagno is the sole author of 30 reports, the first author of 30 reports, and the co-author of 32 reports published in scientific journals. Dr. Pessagno is still active publishing papers and doing geologic consulting.

Dr. Pessagno was a member of the Biostratigraphic Panel for the Deep Sea Drilling Project (1967-1975); Voting Member of the International Subcommission on Jurassic Stratigraphy (1984-1999); Co-founder, Chairman of Editorial Board, and Editor of journal Stratigraphy; two term president of the Cushman Foundation (1975-1977), Member of Board of Directors of Cushman Foundation (1975-2004), Honorary Member of Board of Directors (2004 to present); Founder (1977-1979) and first president of North America Micropaleontological Section of SEPM (NAMS: 1980-1981).

At the request of several of friends and colleagues, a graduate student endowment is being established to honor Dr. Pessagno. The purpose of the Emile A. Pessagno Graduate Student Endowment Fund will be to provide much needed funds to graduate students involved in geological research in the fields of micropaleontology, stratigraphy, sedimentology, and structural geology.

Your gift to the Emile A. Pessagno Graduate Student Endowment Fund is a meaningful tribute to Dr. Pessagno. To contribute to the Emile A Pesagno Graduate Student Endowment Fund please Follow the “Make a Gift to NS&M” link and you will see the Emile A. Pessagno Graduate Student Endowment Fund in the designation box. Dr. Pessagno will receive notification of all gifts and correspondence. If you any have questions, please contact Barbara Hollis, at (972) 883-6407.

Thank you for your consideration of this proposal to honor Dr. Pessagno. All gifts to this endowment are tax deductible, and as many of you know, some companies will match donations made by their employees.

  • Updated: August 12, 2015