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November 04, 2016

Hamilton College sends four to SEA Semester as it spreads word on Study Abroad for STEM students

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News
By Land and Sea, STEM Students Study Abroad
Hamilton College News

There’s a great big world of off-campus studies, and it’s not just for art history or French majors. To help prove the point, biology major Angel Pichardo ’17 gave a talk at a recent Hamilton College colloquium about his semester in DIS Copenhagen. His program focused on biomedicine and drug development. The experience, says Pichardo, was the best four months of his life.

Hamilton’s Off-Campus Study office held the colloquium in part to spread the word about the abundance of worldwide study opportunities in “STEM” or science, technology, engineering and math. Students in STEM disciplines are underrepresented in study abroad, despite their need to learn to function in a global milieu and to handle complex global problems, says Carolyn North, assistant dean of off-campus study.

 

 

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September 27, 2016

Brown University student pursues marine biology and medicine

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News

Sailing for Science
By David Orenstein
Brown Alumni Magazine

Peter Baek ’19 is a premed student, a scientist, and an explorer—thanks to a Disney movie.

“Ever since watching Finding Nemo with my grandpa and dad,” he says, “our love for fish and the ocean blossomed as every shelf around the house became occupied with aquariums.” Looking after all those fish inevitably led to an interest in science, Baek explains, and then to oncology: “The passing of my grandpa from laryngeal cancer transformed my interest in science to something deeper—the desire to pursue a career in oncology in dedication to my grandpa.”

In the years since high school, marine biology and cancer medicine have become inseparable to Baek. He’s learned, for example, that the tentacled aquatic animal bugula produces a chemical that has shown promise in fighting cancer. Before arriving at Brown last year, he spent summers learning about cancer biology in labs at the University of Pittsburgh and the National Institutes of Health.

Read the full story.

 

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September 22, 2016

SEA Semester alumna’s marine biological research continues at Amherst

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News

We’re always interested to hear about the continuing research conducted by recent SEA Semester alumni, so we thought we’d share this report about Taylor Hallowell from The Amherst Student.  Taylor sailed with C-266, Marine Biodiversity and Conservation, last spring.

Thoughts on Theses: Taylor Hallowell ‘17
By Jacob Gendelman ‘20; Staff Writer, The Amherst Student

Taylor Hallowell ’17 majors in biology. Her thesis examines the sensory drive hypothesis in cichlid fish that express different retinal genes while living under different colors of light. Professor of Biology Ethan Clotfelter is her advisor.

Q: Can you describe your thesis?

A: The sensory drive hypothesis is essentially that there’s a difference in the environment, [which] leads to sensory divergences, like divergences in animals’ sensory systems. That leads to reproductive isolation, and that leads to speciation. There isn’t a ton of evidence for it right now, but there’s an increasing amount. People are starting to take more of an interest in it. I’m trying to get more data for it. I’m working with cichlid fish, which are really common fish to work with because they’re so easy to breed. I have hundreds of little babies already. I’m making them grow up in extreme light environments. A third of them are only getting red light, a third are only getting blue light, and a third are getting just white light. I’m trying to show that differences in light environment cause differences in the expression of the genes in the retina. That would contribute to the sensory drive hypothesis.

Read the full story.

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September 21, 2016

Stony Brook University students recount Phoenix Islands adventure

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News
SoMAS Students Participate in SEA Semester Journey
Stony Brook University School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences News

Alexandra Bonecutter, a student in the Environmental Studies program with a Marine Science minor, and Ruthann Monsees, a student in the Coastal Environmental Studies program Sustainability Studies program, were part of a SEA Semester voyage that was recently featured in The New York Times.  According to an email distributed by SEA Semester, the voyage “discovered good news regarding coral health in the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA) in July, 2016”

The message continues:

PIPA is one of the last remaining coral wildernesses on Earth, about which little is known. An expanse of ocean about the size of California, it is the largest – and deepest – UNESCO World Heritage site.

Accompanied by 21 other undergraduates, SEA Semester faculty, and researchers from the New England Aquarium and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Alexandra and Ruthann gathered data on the health of the islands’ coral reef ecosystem in order to recommend policy implementations to the PIPA management office in Kiribati – all while sailing as active crewmembers aboard our tall ship research vessel!

Ruthann and Alexandra were on voyage class S-268 Protecting the Phoenix Islands.  According to Ruthann, “We sailed for six weeks from Honolulu to the American Samoa, focusing on the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA); a Marine Protected Area belonging to Kiribati.”  This area, she says, “is recognized as an area with the most “pristine” coral reef system” that “has shown remarkable resilience in the face of climate change, El Nino bleaching events, and anthropogenic effects.”

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September 19, 2016

Lectureship honors Ambrose Jearld, Jr. for promoting diversity

SEA Semester

The Woods Hole scientific community on Saturday honored Ambrose Jearld, Jr., influential NOAA researcher and SEA overseer, with an annual lectureship in recognition of his efforts to make oceanography and marine biology more accessible to a diverse body of students and research faculty.

The surprise presentation was made at Jearld’s retirement party at Fisher House, Church of the Messiah, in Woods Hole. Jearld retired from NOAA Fisheries Service on Sept. 2 after 38 years of service.

The Ambrose Jearld, Jr. Lecture, established and administered by the Diversity Initiative and Diversity Advisory Committee, will be given every summer in Woods Hole by invited scholars, scientists, and authors. The lectures will begin next summer, coinciding with the biennial John K. Bullard Diversity Award.

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September 07, 2016

SEA Semester Faculty Report on Sargassum Beaching Phenomenon

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News
Sargassum Watch Warns of Incoming Seaweed
Eos

SEA Semester professors Deborah Goodwin, Jeffrey Schell and Amy Siuda contributed to this Eos article on efforts to track Sargassum - including by satellite and from the deck of the SSV Corwith Cramer - to better understand and mitigate the recent phenomenon of Sargassum beaching events.

Read the article

Categories: News,Corwith Cramer,Marine Biodiversity & Conservation, • Topic: featured • (0) CommentsPermalink

August 18, 2016

PIPA student profiled in Brown University’s “News from Brown”

SEA Semester

SEA Semester in the News
In summer at sea, adventurous student continues a personal academic journey
By David Orenstein

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Peter Baek traces his inspiration as a scientist, pre-med student and explorer to a beloved movie.

“Ever since watching ‘Finding Nemo’ with my grandpa and dad, our love for fish and the ocean blossomed as every shelf around the house became occupied with aquariums,” said Baek, a rising sophomore at Brown University. “My fascination with fish ultimately led to my interest in science as I continued to get deeper into the water chemistry and biology of fish keeping. The passing of my grandpa from laryngeal cancer, however, transformed my interest of science to something deeper — the desire to pursue a career in oncology in dedication to my grandpa.”

Read the full story.

Categories: News,Robert C. Seamans,Protecting the Phoenix Islands, • Topic: featured • (0) CommentsPermalink

August 16, 2016

SEA Semester students find signs of hope in remote Phoenix Islands

Doug Karlson, communications@sea.edu

SEA Semester

We like to say SEA Semester students adventure with a purpose.  Nowhere is that more true than on our recent expedition aboard the SSV Robert C. Seamans to the rarely visited Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA), in the island nation of Kiribati. 

SEA Semester students, crew and scientists, led by SEA Professor of Oceanography Dr. Jan Witting, together with researchers from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the New England Aquarium, sailed 1,600 miles across the Equatorial Pacific from Honolulu to reach the remote archipelago, one of the last coral wildernesses in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Categories: News,Robert C. Seamans,Protecting the Phoenix Islands, • Topic: featured • (1) CommentsPermalink

July 14, 2016

SEA, New England Aquarium collaborate to study Phoenix Islands

Doug Karlson, communications@sea.edu

SEA Semester

Scientists from the New England Aquarium are currently on board the SSV Robert C. Seamans as she approaches the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA) with SEA Semester class S-268. Our students and scientists, together with New England Aquarium scientists, will help gather data to help protect this amazing UNESCO World Heritage Site – one of the world’s last remaining coral wildernesses.  Dr. Randi Rotjan, Associate Research Scientist at the New England Aquarium, Chief Scientist of the PIPA Conservation Trust and Co-Chair of the PIPA Scientific Advisory Committee, recently sent SEA President Peg Brandon the following letter, which summarizes our unique collaboration and explains why it’s so important….

Categories: News,Robert C. Seamans,Protecting the Phoenix Islands, • Topic: featured • (0) CommentsPermalink

May 26, 2016

Video: 2016 National Science Board Public Service Award Recipient

SEA Semester

To help spread the word about Sea Educations Association’s National Science Board Public Service Award, presented in Washington on May 5th, the National Science Foundation produced this stunning video.

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