NOAA Awards Nine NOAA Fisheries/Sea Grant Fellowships

July 28, 2009

A group of Fellows listen a to an aqauculture expert in Florida.

A group of Fellows listen a to an aquaculture expert in Florida.

High resolution (Credit: NOAA)

The 2009 class of nine NOAA's Fisheries Service/Sea Grant fellowships is the largest in the history of the program. Among the multi-year doctoral fellows, seven are studying population dynamics and two are studying marine resource economics.
“NOAA established this unique graduate fellowship program in 1999 to focus on changes in fish populations, what influences those changes, and what drives marine resource economics. Training and recruiting candidates in these highly specialized disciplines is important to NOAA's Fisheries Service and to the National Sea Grant Program,” said Leon Cammen, Director of NOAA’s National Sea Grant College Program.

Population dynamics is the study of fish populations as affected by fishing mortality, growth, recruitment and natural mortality. Marine resource economics focuses on the valuation of fishery resources, fishers and policy choices.

Selected for population dynamics fellowships:

Melissa Hedges, Louisiana State University
Major professor – Joe Powers; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Liz Brooks, NEFSC, Woods Hole, Mass.
Identification and incorporation of quantitative indicators of ecosystem function into single-species fishery stock assessment models and the associated biological reference points

Mark Henderson, Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Major professor – Mary Fabrizio; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Steve Cadrin, NEFSC, Woods Hole, Mass. “Stock structure and mortality rates of summer flounder based on multiple tagging technologies”

Patrick Kilduff, University of California, Davis
Major professor – Louis Botsford; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Steve Lindley, SWFSC, La Jolla, Calif.
Understanding the influence of a variable ocean environment on chinook salmon

Jocelyn Lin, University of Washington
Major professor – Lorenz Hauser; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Jeff Hard, NWFSC, Seattle
An individual-based quantitative genetic model for investigating local adaptation and population viability in connected populations of sockeye salmon

Patrick Lynch, Virginia Institute of Marine Science (Major professor – Robert Latour; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Kyle Schertzer, SEFSC, Beaufort, N.C.
Expanding quantitative approaches to assessing the population status and dynamics of large pelagic fishes

Skyler Sagarese, State University of New York, Stony Brook
Major professor – Michael Frisk; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Paul Rago, NEFSC, Woods Hole, Mass.
Assessing spiny dogfish migration and population dynamics in the northwest Atlantic

James Thorson, University of Washington
Major professor – Andre Punt; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Ian Stewart, NWFSC, Seattle
Evaluating Pacific groundfish schooling behavior and untrawlable refuges using multi-species mixture models and data from autonomous underwater vehicles

Selected for marine resource economics fellowships:

A former Fellow demonstrates the 'hands-on' aspect of his work.

A former Fellow demonstrates the 'hands-on' aspect of his work.

High resolution (Credit: NOAA)

Ben Gilbert, University of California, San Diego
Major professor – Theodore Groves; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Dale Squires, SWFSC, La Jolla, Calif.
The role of voluntary fishing cooperatives in the U.S. fisheries management: costs, benefits and economic efficiency

Chris Kennedy, University of Wyoming
Major professor – Edward Barbier; NOAA Fisheries mentor – Larry Perruso, SEFSC, Miami
Biological complexity and economic reality in fisheries management: a study of the Georgia USA blue crab fishery

The goals of the NOAA  Fisheries /Sea Grant Fellowship Program are:
  • To encourage qualified applicants to pursue careers in population dynamics and stock assessment or in marine resource economics.
  • To increase available expertise related to these fields.
  • To foster closer relationships between academic scientists and NOAA Fisheries.
  • To provide real-world experience to graduate students and accelerate their career development.

Since 1999, the NOAA Fisheries/Sea Grant graduate fellowship program has awarded a total of 54 fellowships. Each fellowship award is in the form of a cooperative agreement between NOAA's Fisheries Service and the Sea Grant university/college of $38,500 per year.

For more information on the program, fellows or future applications, contact local Sea Grant program offices or the NOAA's Fisheries Service/Sea Grant liaison, Terry Smith.

NOAA understands and predicts changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and conserves and manages our coastal and marine resources.