Student Service Award

The University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) Student Service Award honors a graduate student who has provided outstanding service to their laboratory unit, UMCES, the University System of Maryland, their community, government agencies, and/or professional societies over the course of their tenure as an UMCES graduate student. The award recognizes contributions that are vitally important to the UMCES community and constituencies, but are often overlooked in comparison to more traditional academic or scientific achievements. 

2024, Chelsea Fowler
Horn Point Laboratory

Chelsea Fowler, a graduate student working with Louis Plough at the Horn Point Laboratory, is recognized for her tireless efforts to create a welcoming student environment and diving into numerous opportunities with gusto. Fowler served as a Marine Estuarine Environmental Sciences/UMCES graduate student representative, a volunteer liaison for the summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates students, and is a leader on the Horn Point Chapter of the Society for Women in Marine Science. She is dedicated to community engagement and has helped Horn Point expand its presence and impact in the local community. Chelsea is a regular public tour leader for Horn Point and serves as the student representative on the new ad-hoc Environmental Education Committee, helping develop new strategies and opportunities for youth. She also helped organize the annual Horn Point Open House for the community, in addition to organizing the Science Saturday STEM event last fall, while conducting research on the efficacy of new environmental DNA monitoring techniques of important fish populations.

2022, Claire Nemes
Appalachian Laboratory

Claire Nemes received this award for a high level of engagement and service to the Appalachian Laboratory, UMCES, and the broader community. Focusing her graduate work on bird research, Nemes has given more than a dozen talks to community groups about bird migration or the ecological impacts of free-roaming cats on birds. She recently became a board member and secretary of BirdLab, a bird banding and conservation nonprofit in Pittsburgh, PA, and has volunteered in several bird banding and survey efforts in western Maryland and nearby Pennsylvania. Claire has organized countless bird walks in western Maryland, developed educational materials to teach visitors about the challenges of bird migration, and recruited a local cub scout troop to construct and install 14 birdhouses on the Appalachian Laboratory campus.

2021, Christina Goethel
Chesapeake Biological Laboratory

While Christina has been an academic and research standout during her graduate career at the UMCES Chesapeake Biological Laboratory (CBL), culminating most recently in a 2021-2022 Fulbright Fellowship, this award honors her commitment to service across multiple levels. Since arriving at UMCES, Goethel has served on professional workshop and meeting committees, on a CBL Faculty search committee, as a manuscript reviewer for six journals, on ad hoc committees to organize mental health and social justice efforts at UMCES, and in numerous volunteer and outreach activities at CBL. Her service on the UMCES Graduate Student Council further elevates her contributions to an exceptional level.