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itn090105 (2)Last month, five outstanding Stony Brook students majoring in marine sciences or marine vertebrate biology were awarded Evan Frankel Memorial Scholarships. The scholarships, worth up to $4000, enable students to enhance their academic by participating in a marine science extracurricular activity such as an internship, research experience, or travel course. The Fall 2008 winners-Lisa Jackson, Kristin Oppito, Brian Rosenstook, Allison Sowa, and Daniel Whitesell- all chose to use their scholarship to attend SoMAS’s Tropcial Marine Ecology course, which began January 2nd in Discovery Bay, Jamaica.

This is the third year SoMAS has offered the winter session course MAR 388, which is led this year by SoMAS Joe Warren and Bred Peterson. Under their leadership, fourteen Stony Brook undergraduates will spend three weeks at Discovery Bay Marine Lab, learning about coral reef ecosystems and conducting independent field research projects.

Between lectures on topics such
as algae morphology and marine invertebrate taxonomy, students get to experience “submerged learning.” By snorkeling and scuba diving in Discovery Bay and surrounding mangroves, students can observe marine organisms and community interactions first hand.

As a student wrote on the daily-updated course blog, students in MAR 388 are ready to “get wet and explore.”

Read more about SoMAS students’ experiences in Jamaica at http://tropical.blogs.com

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