New Exhibit Will ’Rock’ Open House at Benedictine’s Jurica-Suchy Nature Museum

The public is invited to visit the Jurica-Suchy Nature Museum's newest exhibit "Rocks and Minerals" on the Benedictine University campus.

You can’t heat your home or drive your car without them. You wouldn’t be able to catch episodes of “Homeland,” bring out the flavor in one of your favorite dishes or adequately propose to the person of your dreams without them. 

Yes, life would be pretty boring without rocks and minerals. In fact, they are one of the greatest sources of human consumption. The average American is now expected to use about 3 million pounds of rocks, minerals and fossil fuels throughout their lifetime, according to the Mineral Information Institute. 

The public is invited to learn how these geologic objects influence nearly every aspect of modern life – from electricity and travel to sustenance and shelter – at a new exhibit, “Rocks and Minerals,” which will be unveiled during an open house at the Jurica-Suchy Nature Museum on the Benedictine campus from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, January 21.

Visitors to the “Rocks and Minerals” exhibit will also learn to identify how rocks and minerals formed, and be able to distinguish between their different types. The new permanent exhibit represents a portion of the more than 10,000 specimens and artifacts collected by noted biologists Frs. Hilary and Edmond Jurica, O.S.B. and the late Fr. Theodore Suchy, O.S.B.

The museum is open to the public and there is no admission fee. 

“The new display, like all of our exhibits, is meant to inspire people to take a closer look at the world around them and to appreciate the world’s natural diversity,” said Karly Tumminello, museum curator. “We hope people will learn something new about rocks and minerals and how these natural resources are essential to our daily lives.

A “Specimen Touch Table,” featuring skulls, pelts and casts of animal tracks native to Northern Illinois, will also be on display, and children can take advantage of a special craft booth where they can explore plant and butterfly lifecycles, and color a book or assemble an animal mask which they can take home. 

Visitors to the museum can also examine a rorqual whale skeleton, wooly mammoth bone and a variety of other animal and fossil specimens displayed throughout the museum.

For more information, contact Tumminello at ktumminello@ben.edu or (630) 829-6531.


Benedictine University is an independent Roman Catholic institution located in Lisle, Illinois just 25 miles west of Chicago. Founded in 1887, Benedictine provides 55 undergraduate majors, 15 graduate and four doctorate programs. Benedictine University is ranked No.1 among the country’s fastest-growing campuses between 2000-2010 in the Chronicle of Higher Education’s list of private nonprofit research institutions, and Forbes magazine named Benedictine among “America’s Top Colleges” for the second consecutive year in 2012. Benedictine University’s Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program is listed by Crain’s Chicago Business as the fifth largest in the Chicago area in 2012.


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