Professor Rose Jagus of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) has been awarded the Wilson H. Elkins Professorship by the University System of Maryland for her contributions to increasing the diversity of scientists working in the marine sciences. She is the director of the Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center’s summer undergraduate internship program at the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology (IMET) in Baltimore.
“Although the UMCES faculty have consistently been honored with Regents Awards, this is the first, highly selective Elkins Professorship that UMCES has ever received,” said President Don Boesch. “Under this professorship Rose will support and broaden the minority summer internship program at IMET that has been supported by the Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center. I am sure this will be a big boost to our efforts to broaden participation in marine science.”
The Elkins Professorship is intended to supplement an existing faculty program where there is an opportunity to make an important contribution to the teaching research and public service mission of the institution and the entire University System of Maryland.
Since 2001, Dr. Jagus has served as Project Director of the Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center (LMRCSC) at IMET. The LMRCSC is a minority training program funded by NOAA's Educational Partnership Program and led by Dr. Paulinus Chigbu at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES). In the past, Dr. Jagus has received LMRCSC funds sufficient to support both undergraduate and graduate students. However, in the current funding cycle, 2016-2020, flexibility to support a summer undergraduate internship program at IMET has been lost. The $60,000 Professorship will allow her to continue minority undergraduate training at IMET while she secures alternate funding for the future.
“The award is great recognition for Rose’s work over many years in leading the minority internship program at IMET,” said Russell Hill, director of the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology.
In the last 15 years, the summer program has supported more than 150 minority undergraduate internships at IMET from a wide variety of institutions including the LMRCSC partners, UMES, Delaware State University, Hampton University, Rosensteil School of Marine & Atmospheric Sciences (RSMAS), Savannah State University, as well as UMBC, College Park, Coppin University, University of Baltimore and Morgan State University and other institutions in the United States and Puerto Rico. Many of these students have gone on to further education and training in NOAA-relevant areas.
This program has graduated three master's students, six Ph.D. students, and currently supports three Ph.D. students, as well as co-mentoring students from partner institutions. The co-mentoring of UMES students and the participation of UMES undergraduate interns the summer program has also led to the development of research collaborations between UMCES-IMET and UMES faculty to the benefit of both our institutions
Unlike the LMRCSC funding, which has supported projects in the use of molecular tools in fisheries research and sustainable aquaculture, Dr. Jagus will be able to expand the scope to cover also marine microbial ecology, algal fuel biotechnology, and marine natural products.
“As we have come to understand, all students from institutions of inclusiveness are better equipped to go out and function well in our diverse world,” said Jagus.
Jagus received the University of Maryland Regents Award for collaboration in teaching in 2005 and was recently promoted to full professor at UMCES’ Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology.
As we have come to understand, all students from institutions of inclusiveness are better equipped to go out and function well in our diverse world.