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Four doctorate-level graduate students have been awarded fellowships to pursue their studies in population dynamics or marine resource economics sponsored by the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries) and Sea Grant. NOAA Fisheries and the National Sea Grant College Program are a part of the Commerce Department's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
"We have high expectations that the Graduate Fellowship Program will pay dividends in terms of attracting highly qualified students to the important, and currently understaffed, disciplines of population dynamics and marine resources and encouraging them to seek employment with NOAA Fisheries following graduation," said Emory Anderson, program director for NOAA Fisheries in the Sea Grant office.
The program, funded equally by NOAA Fisheries and the National Sea Grant College Program, provides support for up to three years for qualified students working towards a doctorate in population dynamics or related fields and up to two years for qualified graduate students working towards a PhD in marine resource, natural resources or environmental economics.
All four fellowships awarded this year were in population dynamics. The recipients are: Thomas Ihde of the College of William and Mary, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, Gloucester Point, Va., "Development and application of depletion models that accommodate ancillary information;" Melissa Haltuch of the University of Washington, Seattle, Wash., "Modeling human, climate, and habit impacts on the Pacific Northwest groundfish fishery;" Yasmin Lucero of the University of California at Santa Cruz, "Investigating uncertainty in fish stock assessments;" and Stephanie Wood of the University of Massachusetts at Boston, "Dynamics of recolonization in a depleted population: A study of the gray seal (Halichoerus grypus) in New England."
This is the third year for the fellowship program; four fellowships were awarded in 2000 and another six were given in 2001. Of the 10 fellowships. Three will either have completed their work or their support will have expired by June.
In addition to working under the tutelage of their major professor, each fellow is required to work closely with a mentor from NOAA Fisheries who will provide data for his/her thesis (or concur with a research project suggested by the student), serve on the fellow's committee, and host an annual summer internship at the participating NOAA Fisheries facility. Fellows are required to work each summer of their fellowship at the participating NMFS facility either on their thesis or appropriate related issues.
The award for each fellowship is $38,000 per year to the Fellow's university to cover salary (stipend), living expenses (per diem), tuition, and travel for the fellow necessary to carry out the proposed thesis research and attend an annual fellows seminar each year at NOAA headquarters in Silver Spring, Md.
At the time of application, prospective Populations Dynamics Fellows must be admitted to a doctorate degree program in population dynamics or a related field such as applied mathematics, statistics, or quantitative ecology at a university in the United States. Prospective Marine Resource Economics Fellows must be in the process of completing at least two years of course work in a doctorate program in natural resource economics or a related field at a U.S. university.
The National Sea Grant College Program is a partnership of academia, government, and industry. Sea Grant programs are based at universities in coastal and Great Lakes states and Puerto Rico. They conduct research, education, and outreach to help the nation wisely use and conserve its coastal, ocean, and Great Lakes resources for a better economy and environment.
NOAA Fisheries is dedicated to protecting and preserving our nation's living marine resources through scientific research, management, enforcement, and the conservation of marine mammals and other protected marine species and their habitat.
To learn more about NOAA Fisheries, please visit http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov.
For more information about Sea Grant, go to http://www.nsgo.seagrant.org.