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June 19, 2006

CDELSI awards graduate fellowships in ocean health and environmental change

By Ann Gibb

Five first-year graduate students have received fellowships in ocean health and environmental change from UCSC's Center for the Dynamics and Evolution of the Land-Sea Interface (CDELSI). The graduate fellowships, established through the generosity of an anonymous donor and worth more than $27,000 each, support marine-related research that crosses the traditional boundaries of science and engineering disciplines.

CDELSI is an interdisciplinary research center that brings together faculty, graduate students, and postdoctoral researchers investigating the dynamic systems and complex processes and interactions that occur at the interface between continents and oceans. The center focuses on the coupling of marine and terrestrial systems and the climatic, geologic, biogeochemical, and biological processes that influence these systems.

CDELSI Fellowships support graduate students interested in this interdisciplinary approach with a focus on marine-related research in the fields of ocean health and environmental change. The 2006 CDELSI Fellows are as follows:

Kelsey Dyck (Earth sciences) will be working on a project funded by the National Science Foundation to study stable isotopes and trace elements in mussel shells. The project's goal is to reconstruct coastal ocean temperature, upwelling, and El Niño frequency in sites in central California and British Columbia during the Holocene epoch (from the present to approximately 11,500 years ago).

Peter Rovegno (ocean sciences) is transferring from UCSC's physics graduate program as a result of his research on fluid dynamics influenced by the Earth's rotation and its relevance and application to climate change and biological processes in the oceans. Rovegno will be investigating ocean circulation off the central California coast, particularly in the context of regional effects of environmental change.

Matt Bromage (computer engineering) is finishing his undergraduate degree in computer engineering at UCSC, where he has been team leader of SEA-LABS (Sensor Exploration Apparatus utilizing Low-power Aquatic Broadcasting System). As a graduate student, Bromage will continue his work on the SEA-LABS project, which aims to build a remote sensor network for studying coral reef environments and transmitting data in real time (see previous story).

Nicholas Addleman (ecology and evolutionary biology) will be studying evolutionary and population genetics of marine invasive species, with a possible focus on a hybrid zone, centered in the Monterey Bay region, between a native and an invading mussel species.

Jenny Quay Lane (ocean sciences) earned a B.S. in marine biology from UCSC in 2004 and did her senior thesis research on oceanographic conditions associated with blooms of a toxic diatom. She wants to continue studying harmful algal blooms though the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Monitoring and Event Response for Harmful Algal Blooms (MERHAB) project, which includes the goal of implementing an economically sustainable monitoring program for harmful algal blooms along the California coast.

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