Robby Goldman


  • University of Canterbury
  • Pomona College

I am a second-year PhD student working with Dr. Trish Gregg to understand how stresses within a volcanic system influence magma propagation and eruption location. My current research combines field, petrographic, and computer modeling techniques to constrain the evolution of the Akaroa Volcanic Complex in the South Island of New Zealand, where I conducted research in 2016 as a Fulbright Graduate Student Fellow.

My 3-minute Research Live! talk (which won the 2017 People's Choice Award) provides a good overview:

I am involved with the following educational outreach activities:

1) Simulating explosive volcanic eruptions using a trash can, water, and liquid nitrogen. (

I oversaw the organization and implementation of several "TRASHCANO" demonstrations at this year's Engineering Open House. (

2) Organizing and teaching an exploration geophysics classroom exercise for high school physics students at the University of Illinois Laboratory High School.

I was also part of the organizing committee for the 2018 SESE Research Review, and served as the MC for the lightning talks and awards ceremony (

Finally, I am a dedicated science advocate--I currently serve as the Advocacy Committee Chair for the Science Policy Group at UIUC (, for which I manage outreach activities ranging from campus-wide letter-writing drives to student-led trips to Springfield, IL, to meet with policy makers and discuss science-based legislation. I recently participated in the 2018 AAAS CASE workshop as a representative of UIUC's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. I have also been selected as a participant of AGU's inaugural Voices for Science program, through which I will continue my local, state and Congressional science advocacy activities.