CMS News

CMS News

Message from the Executive Director

Dear Colleagues,

I hope all of you are having a great summer and that you are finding time to relax and recharge with family and friends.

This issue of Coastal & Marine Science News features the work and achievement of UNCW students and faculty during the months of May and June. As you will see, it has been a very busy summer for coastal and marine science research and community outreach. 

I’d also like to share a message from Dr. Martin Posey with you. I am very grateful for Dr. Posey’s leadership as CMS Director over the past few years. 

Best wishes for a wonderful summer,

Aswani Volety

Message from the Director

It has been my great pleasure and honor to serve as CMS Director over the past 3 ½ years. We have continued to build upon the strong foundation of marine sciences. It has been exciting to see the arrival of new faculty recruited from across the various departments; growth of academic programs; and growth of new research areas, facilities, and support structure. All this while working to maintain and enhance our existing strengths.

It has not always been smooth, as clearly exemplified by the impacts of Hurricane Florence, but we have continued to move forward due in large part to the dedication and hard work of our staff, faculty, and students. I have been continually impressed and buoyed by the enthusiasm and collegiality of folks at CMS and throughout marine sciences.

Thank you for a great 3 ½ years and I look forward to working with folks in my continuing roles of researcher and educator.


Martin Posey

CMS & Partners 

CMS Events: Save the Date!

Our CMS Open House is planned for September 28. To spread the word or for more information, please visit our webpage. (more)


MarineQuest originally planned to hold a World Ocean's Day event at the Fort Fisher Recreation Area on June 8, but it was postponed until June 22. (more)

MQ was featured in a Weather Nation article about tackling marine debris left from hurricanes with programs like their Turtle Trash Collectors. (more)  

Outreach, Recognition & Other Notables


Dr. Anne Stapleton (BMB) was selected to be a National Science Foundation rotator. (more)

Dr. Jeremy Morgan (CHM) received the Chancellor's Teaching Excellence Award.

In the Drone

Dr. Devon Eulie (EVS), Mariko Polk (BMB, PhD student), and EVS Graduate's experimentation utilizing drones to monitor nesting wood storks was mentioned in Wildlife in North Carolina article 'A Rare Bird Comes to North Carolina.' (more)

Women in Science

On May 4, Sara Rivero-Calle (PHY) and undergraduate students Alexa Alipour, Leah Newmeyer and Charlotte Simon, participated in the First Women in Science Event at North Carolina Fort Fisher Aquarium, showcasing UNCW's SeaHawk cubesat and the use of ocean color and satellites to study the ocean. (more)


Dr. Till Wagner (PHY) and a team of UNCW researchers and students completed an exciting missio to the Arctic with the support of CMS staff. Their trip was featured by CNN, The Guardian, WECT, and WWAY(more)

Water Quality

Dr. Larry Cahoon (BMB) was featured in an article about GenX. (more)

Dr. Steve Skrabal (CHM) was featured in an article on PFAS contaminants. (more)

On May 31, UNCW hosted a public forum about PFAS contaminants featuring several UNCW researchers. (more)

Undersea Vehicles Program

UNCW UVP has been out exploring the southeast coast for the month of June aboard the NOAA ship, Pisces. Follow their Facebook page for updates and stunning underwater images.

UNCW Undersea Vehicles Program ROV

Brunswick County

Dr. Larry Cahoon (BMB) was featured in an article about Brunswick County sewer systems. (more)

The Benthic Ecology Lab (Troy Alphin and Martin Posey, BMB) helped organize a major reef build at the Town of St. James. 17 Ocean 17’ers and 21 Surf N Serve campers from Marine Quest working with 10 students from the Boys and Girls Home joined 12 Benthic Lab students and 100+ St. James residents to build an oyster shell reef and plant Spartina to help stabilize shoreline erosion. This has been a multi-year collaboration and reefs / marsh plantings established early on continue to thrive and protect the adjacent shore areas.

Coastal Erosion & Rip Currents

Dr. Joe Long (EOS) was featured by WWAY and WFMY News in a few articles about coastal erosion and rip currents. (more).