A Paleontologist with a Goal to Pass on His Passion

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – “I have always loved paleontology you know if it’s dead it’s fun right,” says Jim Mead, Site Director/Chief Scientist at Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, South Dakota.

It’s his love and excitement for learning the past that drives him to share his passion with others. For 40 years, Jim Mead has been presenting all over the country about his work, the Ice Age Colorado Plateau: Been there Dung that.

“Really my interest started back in high school, so it’s been one of those things. Honestly, I had critical teachers at certain stages that said here’s what you need to do and so I did those, it’s been fun,” says Mead.

And thanks to his mentors, Mead is now hoping to not only get people interested in palenotology, but even join him along the adventure.

“I feel like that’s also my job now, is to get other kids interested and do the same thing, ” says Mead.

Although, talking about fossils and old findings may not be for everyone. Mead says he always seems to leave an impression on everyone he meets.

“What’s weird that comes out of these talks, people later on will say you know I was out hiking and I saw some dung and thought of you and it’s kind of like I think that’s a compliment, but I’m not sure. So you get to be known for weird stuff,” says Mead.

They say first impressions go far and Mead is hoping others get the impression of how palentology teaches you more than you would expect.

“I am having fun doing what I am doing and I like to let people know that there is unique things out in our backyard and just keep studying it,” says Mead.

Mead says you never know whether someone is interested in a topic or not, but if you talk about what you do with excitement, you just might change people’s minds.



Categories: Education