I’m a PhD candidate in the Geosciences Department at UMass Amherst working in the Geomechanics Research Group with Dr. Michele Cooke. My current research uses computer simulations of lab experiments to help deepen our understanding of how rocks break, with the broader goal of advancing our understanding of earthquake processes. I am also passionate about science communication. I produce and host a podcast, Lab Talk with Laura, featuring interviews with scientists across disciplines and career stages with the help of local comics. I also have a blog where I share snippets of my life and interests as a scientist.


Check out the work of the UMass Geomechanics Research Group.

My master’s work was focused on the geometry of the San Andreas fault in California. Here I am demonstrating the dip of the fault in the Coachella Valley.

Lab Talk with Laura

You can listen to 30+ episodes of interviews with scientists across a wide range of disciplines. Available in iTunes, Spotify, and most other podcast apps, or stream directly from Soundcloud.


Find updates about my adventures in geology and science communication on my blog.

Laura Fattaruso, MS
PhD Candidate – UMass Amherst Geosciences
pronouns: she/her

Twitter: @labtalk_laura