CMS News

CMS News

Message from the Executive Director

Dear Colleagues,

The semester is in full swing, spring is here and there’s an energy on campus that feels like we are finally returning to normal.

March was another busy month for our students and faculty. UNCW hosted the Southeastern Estuarine Research Society conference and the North Carolina Academy of Science meeting (thank you to everyone who helped make both events a great success); Seahawk-1 sent its first ocean color image from space as it flew over the coast of California; and senior Amanda Ceroli ’19 (PHY) and Dr. Narcisa Pricope (EOS) both received Fulbright awards.

This issue of Coastal & Marine Science News recognizes these notables and other exciting work our colleagues have been engaged in, as well as recent achievements from across the departments. Please join me in commending those included here on a job well done.

I hope the remainder of the semester is a productive one for you and your students.


Aswani Volety

P.S. - Save the date for the 2019 UNCW Global Marine Science Summit, October 9-11. We look forward to hosting another great event at CMS!

CMS & Partners 

CMS Events: Save the Date!

The next Planet Ocean Seminar is on Tuesday, April 9, 2019 at 6:30 PM in the CMS Hodder Hall of Mentors (Auditorium, 1105). 

CMS Graduate Student Poster Session: April 30, 2019 at 4 PM in the CMS William S. Sission Hall of Exploration (lobby).


MarineQuest is hosting free workshops for students and volunteers of CMS!

April 5, 10:00-11:00 AM: Resume Skills with Career Development Counselor Charles Ozuna. This workshop will take place in CMS 1208. Contact Nina at with any questions!

April 13, 9:00 AM-12:00 PM: Storm Surge Protectors. This is a Citizen Science Project aimed to collect a long-term data set to help determine the ecological condition of coastal wetlands in our area. Workshop will being at CMS 1208 and end at Fort Fisher State Park. Register here and contact Jade at with any questions!

Cape Fear River Assembly

The Assembly has their 46th annual meeting on May 23rd. Save the date! (more)

Outreach, Recognition & Other Notables

Distinguished Awards

Associate Professor of Geography Narcisa Pricope (Earth & Ocean Sciences) will be the first recipient of the Distinguished Emerging African Scholar Award, to be presented at the annual meeting of the American Association of Geographers. (more)

New Species Naming Honor

The iMESA Lab (BMB, Integrated Molecular Ecology of Sponges and Ascidians) at UNCW and Dr. Susanna Lopez-Legentil (BMB) received a very special & rare honor. Two new sea-squirt (ascidian) species were named after them: Pyura imesa and Pyura lopezlegentilae. UNCW is specifically mentioned in the ‘Etymology’ section that describes the species P. imesa.

Marine Mammal Stranding Network

The UNCW Marine Mammal Stranding Network (BMB) was highlighted in The Coastland Time: “Humpback Whale deaths concerning.” (more)

SEERS Conference Success

Devon Eulie (Environmental Sciences) was the local host for the 2019 spring Southeastern Estuarine Research Society conference. The conference was a great success and brought in researchers from throughout the southeastern United States. (more)

Women in Science

Alyson Fleming (Biology & Marine Biology) and Sara Rivero-Calle (Physics & Physical Oceanography) co-organized the first joint UNCW and CFCC Women in Science and Engineering Forum that took place at CFCC on March 22nd. Alison Taylor was one of the invited panelists and Charlotte Simon (former MARBIONC intern and CFCC student, who is now a full time undergraduate UNCW student) hosted the event. (more)

Women In Science Alison Taylor

Coastal Review

Larry Cahoon’s (BMB) work, "Expect Worsening Wastewater Woes," was highlighted in the Coastal Review Online. (more)

Cape Fear River

Mike Mallin (CMS) was interviewed by an environmental investigative reporter, with NC Policy Watch in Raleigh, on the reclassification of the Cape Fear River. (more)

North Carolina Oyster Summit 2019

Several students and faculty attended the North Carolina Oyster Summit 2019, including Ami Wilbur (Shellfish Research Hatchery and BMB), who was a panelist for one of the discussion sessions. A number of our former graduate students were present as mariculture growers or state agency representatives.

The Benthic Lab

The UNCW Benthic Ecology Lab (BMB) is working with NOAA partners to assess the habitat value of tidal creeks in the lower Cape Fear River estuary. Sampling will take place in March, June and Sept. (more)

Nature Conservancy

Roger and Dale Shew (Roger Shew – EOS) were featured in the Nature Conservancy’s AFIELD Magazine for their research and stewardship of Nature Conservancy lands in southeastern NC, including their work on Venus flytraps and longleaf pine restoration, which have helped in determining management practices, such as controlled burns, for TNC’s holdings.

Navassa City Council Meeting

Roger Shew (EOS) held discussions with the City Council of Navassa and the NCEERC to summarize test data on the Kerr McGee Superfund site that includes the Feasibility Study and the Baseline Ecological Report on the southern marsh area. This is in preparation for the quarterly meeting that includes Navassa, EPA, Multistate Trust, and NCDEQ.