Student Forum

Mixing art and science a win for IMET student

Kaila Noland, a graduate student at the Insitute of Marine and Environmental Technology won first place in the graduate student division of the Department of Energy's ORISE's Science Poetry Contest. High school and university students were invited to submit a piece in April in honor of National Poetry Month. First place winners in each category won an iPad.

Kate Gillespie, also of IMET, won a virtual keyboard after taking third place for her poem, "Biome, Sweet Biome."

Gillespie encouraged Noland to enter the contest and read Noland's winning poem, "Vacationing as a crab," during the institute's Spring into Science event. You can read it below. Are you up for a challenge? Visit ORISE's competition page.

Vacationing as a Crab

Onward! To Portunidae! To Malacostaca! Wherever our hearts may lead!

Pack suitcases with beach towels, swimsuits and sunscreen for all your vitellegenous needs!

Buy tickets! Book trains! Don't forget to go through terminal-pubetral molt before TSA!

Lastly, keep your androgenic gland in check or you might be responsible for a sponge!


Student Groups


Writing Group
On Mondays at 2 PM in BFL (small conference room), students meet as an informal, drop-in group to write their theses, dissertations, or work on whatever other project they have facing them. It is a wonderful opportunity for students to get together and support each other. Feel free to drop in!

American Association of University Women
AAUW meets Tuesdays from 4-5 for fall 2019, but that changes each semester. If you are interested in being a part of AAUW and want to receive emails about our meetings, please fill out the survey down below.


Microbial Biotechnology Club Meetings
Upcoming Meetings:
Feb. 11      UMBC
March 11   IMET
April 15      UMBC


3 questions for... KEVIN KAHOVER

Chesapeake Biological Laboratory graduate student Kevin Kahover's research involves building a computer model that can be used to simulate the numerous ecological, chemical, and physical processes that occur on a restored oyster reef.

Why does it make a difference? This research will be used to predict how recent oyster reef restoration projects in the Chesapeake Bay will influence local water clarity, ammonia production, and overall nitrogen removal. Understanding how these parameters are affected by oyster reefs allows us to predict what environmental benefits we can expect to see from constructing oyster reefs (apart from simply increasing local oyster populations). The model will also give managers insight into how to build reef to maximize these environmental benefits and ecosystem services.

How did you get interested in environmental science? I’ve always been interested in the environment and environmental stewardship, and I have been especially fascinated with the unique and complex biological interactions that occur in the marine environment. Therefore, I decided to major in marine science and biology as an undergraduate, and I continue to work in environmental science as a graduate student.

When did you come to UMCES and what made you decide to come here? I came to UMCES in the summer of 2015. Dr. Lora Harris was looking for a graduate student to do mathematical and computer modeling, which I had some experience doing as part of my undergraduate research.

Read Kevin's full Q&A and find more interviews on our Student Stories page. 

Graduate Student Council Representatives

Appalachian Laboratory

Chesapeake Biological Laboratory

Horn Point Laboratory

Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology

Where are they now?

Astronaut Ricky Arnold, Biotech start-up founder Ryan Powell, and Secretary of Inter-American Convention for the Protection and Conservation of Sea Turtles Verónica Cáceres Chamorro are each leaving their mark on this world, but despite their different careers, they were all once graduate students at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. Visit the Alumni Profiles page to learn more about these and other UMCES graduates.


2019 Southern Division – American Fisheries Society
The meeting will be held at the Moody Gardens Hotel and Conference Center on Galveston Island, Texas from January 24-27, 2019. Join over 500 fisheries professionals from the southeastern US and the Caribbean for four days of workshops, presentations, networking events, and fun.  All the information you need to plan your trip to attend the meeting can be found here.

ASLO 2019 Aquatic Sciences Meeting
February 23 - March 2, 2019. San Juan, Puerto Rico. A wealth of topics will be discussed at the meeting, many stemming from key areas of importance to the area itself at this crucial time – the role of science at the center of all economic, societal and environmental recovery and development efforts, studies on renewable energy, environmental sustainability, clean water, and rebuilding and maintaining terrestrial ecosystems. More information can be found here.

Society of American Foresters National Convention
October 30 - November 3, 2019. Louisville, Kentucky 

Atlantic Estuarine Research Society Spring Meeting
Woodbridge, VA from April 4-6, 2019. We will meet in George Mason University’s brand-new Potomac Science Center, scenically situated on the Occoquan River. With our theme “From the head of the tide to the edge of the shelf” we aim to emphasize the breath and spatial scale of estuaries and coast. We welcome topics ranging from freshwater tidal ecosystems to coastal oceans, and are particularly interested in the connections and exchange between these systems, and the spatial gradients within. More information found here.

American Chemical Society National Meeting
March 31-April 3, 2019 in Orlando, FL. For more information and to register, see this website.

2020 Ocean Sciences Meeting
San Diego, CA. 16–21 February 2020.

Scholarships and Assistantships

EcologyPlus: Where Diversity Meets Opportunity


A new project, funded by the National Science Foundation, to broaden participation in ecology.  EcologyPlus is an alliance of 15 partners led by ESA and will provide diverse students in the Greater DC area with paid career mentoring, networking, research/internship and skills development opportunities. Undergraduate, graduate students, and recent graduates in the Great Washington DC area are encouraged to apply here. Deadline: Extended until filled.

Research Opportunities at the US Forest Service Research and Development (R&D)


Research opportunities routinely become available at the US Forest Service Research and Development (R&D), a component of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. R&D works at the forefront of science to improve the health and use of our Nation's forests and grasslands. Research areas include invasive species, inventory and analysis, outdoor recreation, resource management, water, air and soil, wildland fire and fuel, and wildlife and fish. For more information, click here. Deadline: rolling applications.

Chesapeake Bay Environmental Research with the U.S. Army

One research opportunity is available with the U.S. Army Garrison - Aberdeen Proving Ground, Directorate of Public Works (APGDPW). Qualified candidates should have completed a Bachelor and/or Master degree in biological sciences, forestry, environmental science, environmental engineering within the past five years.  U.S. citizenship is required. Research participant will assist senior level scientists and engineers who are responsible to create and to sustain the mission landscape through a proactive program of diverse activities that simultaneously promote environmental stewardship for the Chesapeake Bay and its natural and living resources while simultaneously supporting mission related activities. Candidate will be well versed in technical and scientific principles associated with natural resource management.


Please review our Information on UMCES Students and Graduate Programs for guidelines and statistics about UMCES Students.  

Information, guidance, and expectations of UMCES students in the Student Handbook.