Ocean Blog

Ocean 496: Coastal Ecosystems of Micronesia in a Changing Climate
Ocean 496: Coastal Ecosystems of Micronesia in a Changing Climate

On August 21, 2014, fifteen University of Washington undergraduate students will embark on a 23 day intensive oceanography fieldwork course in Kosrae, Micronesia. The Island of Kosrae is the eastern-most island in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and the expansive Caroline Island chain of the western tropical North Pacific Ocean. It is unique among Micronesian Islands in that it is a solitary island surrounded by a coral reef rather than being amongst a group of small islands. Magnificent mangrove swamps and seagrass meadows surround much of the coastline. With a population of just over 7,000 people, very little in the way of tourism or industry, and active conservation efforts, most of its 42 square miles of lush mountainous terrain remains undisturbed and stunningly beautiful.

As a small island state, Kosrae is already beginning to be affected by impacts of global climate change, and is likely to be subjected to increasingly negative consequences throughout the 21st century. By studying on Kosrae, the students will see first hand the effects of climate change, particularly sea-level rise, and how it is felt in a remote island location where the local population had no role in creating the problem.

With the guidance of Professor Julian Sachs and Graduate Students Dax Soule and Marta Wolfshorndl, the students will apply basic principles of geology, chemistry and biology to develop an understanding of Kosrae’s coastal ecosystems, learn about the ways global climate change is impacting those ecosystems, and experience the rich Kosraean culture. The course will include units on mangroves, coral reefs, estuaries and seagrasses. Most days will feature a field-based activity, during which students will conduct a rapid ecological assessment of a mangrove swamp, coral reef, or seagrass meadow. Local experts will join us for most of these activities. Our ecological assessments from pristine settings will be compared to those from locations impacted by human activities, such as runoff or logging. This data will be shared with the Kosrae Island Resource Management Authority (KIRMA) and the Kosrae Conservation and Safety Organization (KCSO). The final student project in Kosrae will be to develop a workshop for K-8 teachers on Kosrae on mangroves. Once back in Seattle, each student will be responsible for writing a paper that will apply what they’ve learned on Kosrae to a broader context. The paper will be based on a coastal ecosystem, climate or conservation related issue of their choosing.

The goal of this blog is two-fold: first, to share our scientific methods and endeavors as the students actively engage with the environment of Kosrae, and secondly, to offer a glimpse into the beautiful Kosraean culture. We hope you will join us in our pursuit of knowledge and share in the many trials, tribulations, and successes in the oh-so very hot and sweaty days ahead!

Past Entries

The Marine Technology Society 2014 Scholarship Program

The Marine Technology Society 2014 Scholarship Program is now open to students who are interested in Marine Engineering, Marine Technology and the Oceans.

MTS is pleased to offer thousands of dollars’ worth of scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students who are studying in the marine science, marine engineering and/or marine technology field. Scholarships are for MTS student members only. For membership information, please go to here. Student Membership is for full-time college students and high school seniors is only $25 per year.

For more scholarship information, please visit our website: http://www.mtsociety.org/education/scholarships.aspx. To go directly to the applications, click here MTS Scholarship

Applications must be postmarked no later than April 15, 2014.

Please feel free to contact suzanne.voelker@mtsociety.org, 202-717-8705, ext. 102 with any questions.

The Marine Technology Society is not-for-profit professional society of ocean engineers, technologists, policy makers, and educators. It is dedicated to the development and sharing of information and ideas about marine engineering and technology.

Thank you,

Suzanne Voelker
Marine Technology Society
1100 H Street NW, Suite LL-100
Washington, DC 20005

Scholarships Available to MTS Student Members

Charles H. Bussmann Undergraduate Scholarship


Open to MTS members who are college undergraduate students currently enrolled full time in a marine-related field

Charles H. Bussmann Graduate Scholarship


Open to MTS members who are college graduate students currently enrolled full time in a marine-related field

The MTS Student Scholarship for Graduate and Undergraduate Students


Open to MTS members that are college undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled full time in a marine-related field

The MTS Student Scholarship for Two-Year, Technical, Engineering and Community College Students


Open to MTS members enrolled in a two-year, technical, engineering or community college in a marine-related field

The MTS Student Scholarship for Graduating High School Seniors


Open to MTS student members that are high school seniors who have been accepted into a full-time undergraduate program

John C. Bajus Scholarship


Open to MTS members who are a college undergraduates and graduate students currently enrolled full time in a marine-related field who have shown a commitment to community service and/or volunteer activities

The Paros-Digiquartz Scholarship


Open to MTS members with an interest in marine instrumentation who are undergraduates and graduate students currently enrolled full time in an academic institution.

ROV Scholarship

Up to $8,000

Open to MTS student members interested in remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) or underwater work that furthers the use of ROVs.

Dieter Family Travel Scholarship
Up to $500
Full student registration and up to $500 for travel-related expenses to a MTS/EEE Oceans Conferences.

2014 Summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU)

2014 Summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU): Coastal Ocean Systems and Sustainability program
with the USC Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies


Program dates: June 16 – August 8, 2014 (8 weeks).
Application deadline: February 17, 2014.

This NSF-funded program will support highly motivated and talented undergraduate students to conduct independent but guided research that focuses on Coastal Ocean Systems and Sustainability at the Wrigley Marine Science Center (WMSC) on Catalina Island, CA.

Students will get hands-on research experience, training in laboratory and field methodologies, introductory lectures and seminars in oceanography and marine science, academic and career advisement, as well as opportunities to explore different parts of the island and ecosystems. Other benefits include: $500/week stipend, housing at the WMSC, reimbursement for travel from host institution (up to $500), and transportation between the WMSC and the mainland.
We welcome applications from students who have completed at least one year of undergraduate study and will be enrolled as an undergraduate in the Fall of 2014. Students must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals or permanent residents of the U.S. to be eligible for this program. We especially encourage students from underrepresented groups in STEM fields or schools with limited research opportunities to apply. This program will be particularly useful for undergraduate students with a strong interest in pursuing graduate school or a career in marine science. Competitive applicants will have at least a 3.0 GPA, one semester of chemistry, one semester of biology, and one semester of calculus or statistics.
The application and more information can be found at: http://dornsife.usc.edu/wrigley/reu/

Contact: wies-reu@usc.edu.

Linda Chilton
Education Program Coordinator
Sea Grant Program
University of Southern California
3616 Trousdale Pkwy. AHF 252
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0373
email: lchilton@usc.edu

2014 Postdoctoral Scholar Program Advertisement

The Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) in La Jolla, California, invites applications for one or more Institution-wide Postdoctoral positions in any of the major areas of research conducted at Scripps. Scripps Institution of Oceanography is one of the oldest, largest, and most important centers for marine science research in the world. Research at Scripps Institution of Oceanography encompasses physical, chemical, biological, geological, and geophysical studies of the oceans, earth, and atmosphere. Scripps Postdoctoral scholars are expected to interact with existing programs, and candidates are required to contact potential mentors and identify mutual research interests prior to submitting their applications. Research activities at SIO can be explored by viewing profiles of the Principal Investigators at Scripps.

Candidates are required to have completed the PhD degree prior to taking up the appointment and should have received the degree no earlier than January 1, 2011. Current and former Scripps Postdocs are not eligible for these awards.

Awards are competitive with a major emphasis on potential for independent, creative research. The Postdoc positions are for one year, and award twelve months of salary with a minimum stipend of $58,000 plus benefits. An additional six months of support may be granted provided that the Postdoc obtains additional external support. Appointees are eligible for health insurance through UCSD.

The deadline for applications will be February 1, 2014, and successful candidates are expected to start before December 1, 2014. All applications, which must include two confidential letters of recommendation, and letter of support from a potential Scripps mentor, are to be submitted in electronic form, following instructions to be found here.

Further information can be obtained from:

Chair, Scripps Institutional Postdoctoral Awards Committee
c/o Carrie Byrd
Scripps Institution of Oceanography
University of California, San Diego
9500 Gilman Drive, MC 0210
La Jolla, CA 92093-0210

Marine Sciences Faculty Positon: UNC Chapel Hill

The Department of Marine Sciences at The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (http://marine.unc.edu) invites applications for a tenure track position to be filled as an Assistant/Associate Professor in one of two possible focus areas. Carolina faculty in general and Marine Sciences faculty in particular have a strong tradition of including undergraduate students, in addition to graduate students and post-doctoral fellows into their extramurally funded independent research programs, in addition to providing outreach and service within and outside the University.

Marine Environmental Genomics

The Department seeks exceptional candidates in the developing field of marine environmental genomics with research and teaching interests focused on marine microorganisms (i.e. viruses, archaea, bacteria and protists). The candidate will have research expertise in the implementation and/or development of bioinformatic tools to analyze large sequence libraries and associated environmental data from marine microbial systems through generating their own datasets, analyzing those obtained by other groups within and outside the University, or both. This position will leverage exceptional facilities on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus for environmental genomics research that include the High-Throughput Sequencing Facility housed within the Carolina Center for Genome Sciences (http://genomics.unc.edu/), the ITS clusters (http://its.unc.edu/research/) and the UNC Bioinformatics Center (http://bioinformatics.unc.edu/). The candidate may also benefit from being affiliated with the Curriculum of Environment and Ecology and/or the Curriculum of Bioinformatics and Computational Biology.

Particle Dynamics

The Department seeks exceptional candidates with a research and teaching focus on the dynamic interactions between fluids and particles. Candidates are encouraged from the spectrum of fluid-particle dynamic interactions, ranging from Environmental Microfluidics, very small scales where viscosity is dominant, to Sediment Dynamics, sediment transport in high-energy coastal environments. Areas of interest include, but are not limited to: plankton interaction with shear and turbulence, chemotaxis, particle sedimentation in stratified fluids, links between microscopic environment and large scale fluxes, how physical processes (associated with river flow, waves, tides, and currents) move sediment, transform the coast, and deposit sediment in the marine environment. Especially encouraged are candidates interested in crosscutting collaborations with research on nutrient cycling, geochemical fluxes, sedimentology, and microbiology in riverine, estuarine, coastal and open ocean environments. The successful candidate is expected to develop a strong, extramurally funded research program built on collaborations with current and future faculty members within the department and the Institute of Marine Sciences, as well as with research groups in Applied Mathematics, Environmental Sciences and Engineering and Microfluidics in the Physics and Astronomy Department. The candidate will have full access to two outstanding campus-based facilities, the Marine Sciences/Applied Mathematics joint Fluids Lab (http://fluidslab.web.unc.edu/) and the supercomputing cluster (http://its.unc.edu/research/).

To apply for the position, please follow this link: http://unc.peopleadmin.com/postings/35661. Applicants must submit a cover
letter with the names of at least 4 references, a Curriculum Vitae and research and teaching statements; the position will
remain open until filled with application review beginning January 15, 2014. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is
an Equal Opportunity Employer.         

2014-2016 Coastal Management Fellowship

State projects have recently been selected for the 2014 Coastal Management Fellowship opportunity. This Fellowship provides education and training in coastal resource management and policy for postgraduate students, matching them with state coastal zone projects. The two-year fellowship is sponsored by NOAA's Coastal Services Center and offers a competitive salary, medical benefits, and travel and relocation expense reimbursement. Students are eligible for this fellowship if they will complete their master's, doctoral, or professional degrees between January 1, 2013 and July 31, 2014.

Applications are due to Washington Sea Grant by January 24, 2014.

For more information:

*Visit the Washington Sea Grant website at http://wsg.washington.edu/education/fellowships/NOAA-CMF.html

*Contact Nancy Reichley at Washington Sea Grant: sgfellow@u.washington.edu or 206-685-8302.

Marine Debris Internship – COASST

Marine Debris Internship – COASST

The Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team (COASST), a citizen science program based at the University of Washington’s School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, is looking for 2-5 undergraduate students to assist with program’s upcoming marine debris data collection project beginning spring 2015.

Students working with COASST gain valuable, hands-on experience with citizen science programs, scientific protocol development and testing and learn the complexities of adapting data collection to a broad and diverse corps of participants. Students will work directly with the program’s research staff to:
-create marine debris photo database with linked attributes
-field-test the marine debris protocol
-create the marine debris field toolkit
-finalize marine debris literature search
-network with marine debris principal investigator, researchers, and partners

Once quarterly, students will present their work at lab meetings, and attend the Pacific Coast field trip.

Interested students should send an email to: Jane Dolliver, Program Coordiantor, coasst@uw.edu

Please include a statement of interest that contains:
-applicable background in marine biology (coursework, job/intern experience)
-experience with data, statistics packages, databases (excel, R, catalyst etc.)
-experience with volunteers, volunteer programs, and/or other research labs
-days and times of availability for January-March – Winter Quarter 2014 (8am-8pm)

Arctic Research Fellowships - $5,000

Arctic Research Fellowships - $5,000
The Arctic as an “Emerging” World Region
Deadline for Proposals: 11 December 2013

More information/application: http://www.jsis.washington.edu/arctic/grad/

Call for Proposals
The Canadian Studies Center, Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies – in partnership with the Center for West European Studies, Ellison Center for Russian, East European and Central Asian Studies, Center for Global Studies, and East Asia Center (all in the Jackson School), Anthropology and Scandinavian Studies, Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, Atmospheric Sciences, Oceanography, Program on Climate Change, and the Quaternary Research Center – is pleased to announce 7-10 fellowships available for UW graduate students valued at $5,000 each.

The Arctic as an “Emerging” World Region
The objectives of the fellowships are to foster innovative research that strengthens area studies at the University and to build vital research linkages across disciplines, particularly between the natural and social sciences and the humanities, on a range of issues related to the Arctic. Resulting research papers will focus on the Arctic as an emerging world region from a variety of perspectives. Examples of focal topics include climate and ocean change, human rights, changes to the cryosphere, indigenous concepts of Arctic territory, fisheries management and economics, community security, international customary law, past human-environmental dynamics, global geopolitics, resource extraction and environmental ethics, and the interactions between the Arctic indigenous peoples and state entities in the policy dialogue.

More information/application: http://www.jsis.washington.edu/arctic/grad/

Environmental Alternative Spring Break

Environmental Alternative Spring Break is a Pipeline Project opportunity for students to spend their spring break teaching in a rural or tribal community. This is a FREE experience, and comes with a 2-credit seminar during winter quarter to prepare. We are still looking for applicants from across disciplines!
Our application closes on Sunday night, so please help us spread the word about this fantastic opportunity.

Blurb below:
It’s your spring break. One week away from classes, exams and all-nighters. Are you heading to the beach? Are you spending the week on your parents’ couch with a laptop in hand or do you want to make a real, lasting impact?

The UW Pipeline Project is sending groups of students to rural and tribal communities throughout Washington State during spring break 2014 to facilitate hands-on environmental education projects. You and your team will plan, design, and teach your own curriculum to young students whose educational experiences and opportunities are limited simply because of where they live. You will learn more about the community, local ecology, and the environmental and education issues of the region. As part of preparation, you will enroll in a seminar during winter quarter to fundraise for the program and serve as a mentor in local classrooms or environmental organizations for 2-2.5 hours per week. You can reach more students than those you’ll be teaching during spring break. No prior environmental education experience is necessary and your expenses (food, housing, travel) are on s.

EDUC 401 P (2-credit) seminar: Thursdays 4:30-5:50PM (location TBD)
Apply at https://catalyst.uw.edu/webq/survey/lhuynh10/214782 by 5PM on Sunday, November 17th.

You have the chance to make a fundamental lasting impact on a group of students’ lives and perhaps, lead them to sit in your place one day and decide how to spend their own college spring break. Do more than teach. Inspire.

Lingering questions? Contact Loan Huynh at lhuynh10@uw.edu or (206) 453-8781.

Pipeline Project: http://expd.washington.edu/pipeline 

Tenure Track Faculty position at UC, Riverside

The Department of Earth Sciences at the University of California, Riverside, is fortunate to be hiring new tenure-track faculty members in three areas: Biogeochemical Modeling, Neotectonics, and High Resolution Records of Cenozoic Climatic and Environmental Change. The details of the three positions can be found on our Department website at: http://earthscience.ucr.edu/jobs.html


If you would pass this on to any interested people in your department, we would greatly appreciate it. Thank you very much for your time.

The University of California is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and supports dual career couples.