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Motlow State Community College
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Richard Gross exhibit "The World of Minerals" on display in Clayton-Glass Library atrium

Oct. 14, 2015

Motlow College is hosting the exhibit, "The World of Minerals" inside the Clayton-Glass Library on the Moore County campus. The exhibit is presented by Richard Gross, a retired Motlow professor.

While the minerals were gathered from all over the United States, many came from Tennessee. "The Elmwood mine in Carthage and the Cumberland mine in Gordonsville are the premier mineral specimen mines in Tennessee," said Gross.

"A mineral is a naturally occurring solid inorganic substance that has a set chemical formula and an ordered atomic structure," added Gross. "It is different from a rock, which can be an aggregate of minerals and does not have a specific chemical composition."

The exhibit also includes geodes, which appear as plain rocks on the outside but contain crystals on the inside.

"The new mineral collection on display is a great addition to the library," said Stuart Gaetjens, director of libraries at Motlow. "I expect the collection to be useful for geology and chemistry students, but interestingly an art class has already used photographs of some of the specimens for an assignment. The original rock and mineral display inside the library generates a lot of comments. I am sure this one will too."

Gross taught college for 39 years, including 26 at Motlow and 13 at Palm Beach Junior College. At Motlow he taught biology, honor's biology, microbiology, environmental science, geology and photography. He was also responsible for the development of the geology course and credit photography courses at Motlow.

Gross received various awards for his work as a teacher, including the Outstanding Conservation Educator Award from the Audubon Society of the Everglades, the Motlow College Development Council Teaching Excellence Award and the National Teaching Excellence Award from the University of Texas Study.
Richard Gross' exhibit, "The World of Minerals" is currently on display in the Clayton-Glass Library on the Motlow College Moore County campus. Pictured, from left, Stuart Gaetjens, director of libraries at Motlow and Richard Gross, former Motlow professor. Motlow College photo.